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November 13, 2020 | by Brian Duryea | @BatDigest
We’ve used Lizard Skin grips on bats for the last five years.
Although they now have competition, they are still our go-to and dominate the youth, collegiate and MLB market.
If you have never put on a grip, we highly recommend you watch someone else do it before you dive in feet first.
Practice does make perfect for applying Lizard Skin Grips. We are much better at it today, after installing at least a dozen, then we were on our very first one. For the best results, we suggest you watch the video above. And then practice.
Lizard Skin Grips might be the biggest revolution in baseball since pine tar. At every level of the sport, you can find these perforated aftermarket bat grips. Today, several bat companies including Slugger and Easton have stocked their bats with Lizard Skin.
We have seen several dozen up close, installed at least a dozen more, and extensively used the product. That experience, added with extensive player feedback, entails this Lizard Skin Grip review.
This product makes our Holiday Gift Guide list and our best gifts for the baseball and softball players.
When we first reviewed Lizard Skin Grips nearly two years ago, their color options number not much more than a dozen. Now, it can’t be less than 200.
More recently, we ran a user-generated review on the ‘best looking bat grips.’ The voting generated over 10,000 votes. Spoiler alert if you intend to read that entire article: The winner was the Dynamite Camo (pictured at the beginning of this section). The Dynamite Camo is just one of literally hundreds of designs Lizard Skin offers.
Lizard Skin baseball and softball grips cut their teeth on the bike grip space. To survive in that highly competitive niche, bike grips needed to perform in all types of weather—while still providing the spectrum of comfort and feel desired by the rider’s preference. At the time, some believed no company was providing that offering in their handle and grip space. Lizard Skin saw the need and filled it. Today they are known worldwide for an array of quality built bike grips and handlebar tape on any.
Today they are known worldwide for an array of quality built bike grips and handlebar tape on any bike line you can imagine.
They’ve done the climb in baseball for much the same reason they are a worldwide brand in bike grips. That is, a simple recognition that different players like different feels depending on the situation. As well, grips must work in all types of weather. With 18 years of experience in perfecting different grips for competitive bike racers, the transition to producing grips for competitive baseball and softball players was pretty straight forward. They needed options, a grip that had success in all types of weather, and an unbeatable feel.
Considering that in 2012 Lizard Skin had yet to produce a single bat grip, their ascent into the baseball psyche has been nothing short of remarkable. Big names in baseball now use lizard skins religiously–Robinson Cano, David Ortiz, and Hunter Pence, to name a few. Massive vendors like closeoutbats.com can install the grip before shipping out new bats. In 2017, Louisville Slugger had custom made Lizard Skin grips for their bats.
Lizard Skins bat tape for baseball bats come in three degrees of thickness: 1.8mm, 1.1mm, and 0.5mm.
Wood bat users tend to the 0.5mm. This thin grip still gives a tactile feel to the bat’s handle but keeps exceptional grip without pine tar. Look no further than Bo Jackson’s bat or Ken Griffey Jr’s bat, for examples pre Lizard Skin that wanted this tactile feel. Even Honus Wagner, in the 1800s, attempted to improve the grip with cork.
Little leaguers looking for the most cushion possible prefer the 1.8mm. Even most highschoolers appreciate this feel the most. We recommend this to most simply because it does feel the best for shock absorption.
The middle ground is the 1.1mm Lizard Skin grip. This is, roughly, the standard grip width of most bats straight from the factory. We would recommend this to those who don’t want too pillowy of a grip but still aren’t ready for the very thin 0.5mm.
In a sport that has been around nearly as long as America itself, Lizard Skin bat tape somehow created an entirely new product category: customized baseball bat grips for any player, anytime, anywhere. They’ve made a significant run in that space with all signs pointing to an open field ahead.
And probably the greatest validation to Lizard Skin baseball bat grips? Big-name conglomerate companies are now scrambling to space with knock-offs of their own. With a two-year head start, a very fair price point, and traction in the MLB, we suspect those copy-cats will learn quickly that it is hard to catch someone who first learned to run on a bike.