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New bats changing offense in high school baseball

New bats changing offense in high school baseball

March 25th, 2012 in News

A variety of bats hang in the Jefferson City Jays' dugout during a game last week at Vivion Field.

Photo by Kelley McCall

A fondness for Lions Field in Westphalia depends on whether you're a pitcher or a hitter.

At a cozy 300 feet down the lines and 315 to center, the park can be a nightmare for a pitcher as what look like routine fly balls off the bat can turn into home runs. But with a change in the bats used in high school baseball this season, pitcher's thoughts may go from "Oh, no" to "OK."

"A lot of balls that normally would have carried over won't now," Fatima coach Scott Kilgore said, whose Comets play their home games at Lions Field. "It will change the game, the scores will be a lot closer, or at least lower."

A change by the National Federation of High School Associations (NFHSA) requires Missouri high school baseball players to use a different type of bat this spring as a way to increase player safety. In short, the requirement makes the aluminum bats act more like wood.