Learn about the ball you play with
Get the right baseballs for youth, high school, college and professional play as well as collector balls. Cork and non-cork centered baseball products for safety, practice and training, as well as game and tournament baseballs. Online baseball sports equipment specialists to guide you for every player and team need.
Getting The Best Baseballs
Since the first home run was hit in the 1870's, the baseball design has been argued by players, managers, league officials and sports equipment manufacturers alike. Size, weight, height of seams, dead centers versus modern lively baseballs, the evolution of new pitches such as curves, sliders, sinkers, knuckleballs all convey advantage or disadvantage to players. Look over what goes inside the best baseballs:-
- Construction. Modern baseball design features a range of materials, integrated into a 5 ounce weight, 9-inch ball that drives every aspect of the game. Baseball construction typically involves meshing a cork center with a layer of wound wool to form an interior ball. Last in the construction is fitting cowhide leather exterior paneling, along with raised stitching or seams. Alternative materials and construction can include youth baseballs, which can feature plastic or polyurethane centers in order to provide safety cushioning.
- Raised Seams And Dimples. A baseball's profile is uniquely shaped by the circular pattern of stitching or raised seams that bind the outer leather layer. Raised seams or stitching on youth baseballs are lower than on adult baseballs in order to accommodate a smaller hand size in the Little League and youth leagues. Less pronounced stitching or seams on your baseball mean that your youth players will not easily replicate hard-breaking curve balls or the assortment of ‘junk' pitches mastered by older players. Baseball dimples should be avoided, evidencing wear or surface imperfections which will translate into altered performance.
- Special Youth And Safety Equipment. Most baseball equipment is down-sized in order to fit the size and needs of youth players. In ball design, smaller means less aggressive seams, plus increased cushioning in the core materials. A new class of youth-oriented safety ball design is the plastic centered baseball. Additionally, new lines of baseballs are available in brightly finished day-glo yellow sticky plastic for increased visibility, which is important to kids who are in the early stages of developing hand-eye coordination necessary to throwing, batting and fielding.
Necessary Certifications . All playing levels of organized baseball operate according to rules, originally set down in the 1870's and modified ever since. Make sure that your youth baseballs are certified for play by the Little League, Pony League, American Legion League or comparable body. Similarly, baseballs for college and professional play must be certified. Stick with major recognized brands such as Rawlings baseballs or equivalent market leader.
- Practice And Safety Balls. Save your money, yet get a performance practice baseball. Practice baseballs are specifically designed for both indoor batting and catching as well as outdoors. Like safety balls, your typical practice ball features a soft cork or plastic center, able to withstand a lot of use, yet not ‘break the bank' in terms of costs. Softer by design, these safety baseballs are a smart strategy for pre-season and indoor training, where you want to avoid injuries and ricochet.