Updated: July 3, 2020

MLB Bat Throwing: The Grim Reaper Crowd Surfs

Bat throwing into the stands makes for some interesting photos. The one above most recently made famous by a boy who was more concerned about his clash of clans season then this fly Sam Bats baseball bat looked up just in time to open his mouth. Luckily, dad was there to help.

About a year ago we posted an article that discussed other crazy bat throwing pictures we could find on the internet, below is that story.

A couple of seasons ago Kelly Shoppach’s bat found its way into the stands and drilled some bloke in the craw as if the bat had been Muhammed Ali’s fist. It is difficult to move your gaze from the man’s sunken right cheek and misshapen mandible. The man, it was reported, didn’t suffer a broken jaw but, somehow, a broken rib. Even the persistence of Ali’s left jab never hit a man so squarely in the jaw as to fracture something in his chest. At the risk of making a statement that won’t be news to anyone: flying bats are dangerous.

MLB bat throwing

The MLB worked with manufacturers in 2008 to curb the amount of broken bats and it worked. Except for some required signage suggesting spectators watch out for flying bats, however, not much has been done to stop airborne timber getting thrown heavenward fully intact and landing, quite often, on people. Pine tar is as old as the game and Lizard Skin bat tape is helping keep the bat in hand, but rarely a night passes when a big leaguer doesn’t lose grip and send a 32-inch Grim Reaper crowd surfing.

I’ve counted 8 airborne and fully intact bats flying into the stands since the All Star break. (Every following link links a video of a flying bat). Some airborne timber appears to have caused stomach aches, others were caught with an impressive degree of difficulty. Most bats are thrown into the crowds, others at reporters. A few nights ago Tony Abreu, journeyman for the Giants, made the unfortunate distinction of throwing his fully intact bat nearly three times further than the distance he would hit the ball two pitches later.

I thought it might be fun to see if any particular brand was thrown more than others but after just a few minutes of gathering some data points the task seemed futile.  Louisville Slugger, Marucci, Sam Bats, and so on and so on get thrown with equal consistency at people.

There are other reasons people throw bats. Some, for example, throw the bat at a baseball to hit a home run.

Others struggle with the concept of bat grip entirely:

Some throw the bat on accident–I mean purpose:

Some others throw the bat at umpires:

But no matter what the purpose or intent of the flying bat this much we know: flying bats are dangerous–and, in my opinion, the MLB should figure out ways to make that happen less.

If you’re not convinced, (or if you are and would like to laugh a little bit at people wetting themselves) take a look at the following:ye-white-sox-indians-baseball-2010-12-13-15-41-45 tumblr_m5x62tUpOA1qm4we9o1_1280 timthumb pb-110914-bat-rs.photoblog900