Willie Mays’ Bat

Willie Mays’ bat is as iconic a piece of sports memorabilia as we can imagine. Mays, known as “The Say Hey Kid”, was a 24 time All-Star and produced a home record few thought would ever be broken. He won Rookie of the Year, 12 Gold Gloves and was the league MVP twice. With such abundant, well documented success, it is impossible to add to his story here. But, we will add some insight on his bat. For what it is worth, below is the compilation of data we found on Willie Mays’ Bat.

Louisville Slugger 35  33.1, 33.2, 34 Ash S2  1955. 1960 – 1968
Rawlings Adirondack  35 31.2 , 35.5 Ash M63  1961

Willy May's Bat

Willie Mays’ Historic At Bat

Willy May's Bat

The most written about at bat by Willie Mays was on September 22, 1969. On that day, he joined Babe Ruth in the 600 Club on a deep left field shot in San Diego. He only hit 13 home runs that year and that was his last. There isn’t a baseball source on the planet that hasn’t written about that moment.

But, what many don’t remember is that Mays would have and should have reached the 600 mile stone a few years earlier. Enter the Korean War. With the war, his 1952 season was cut short, and his 1953 season was nonexistent. Had his 1952 through 1954 HR totals—which looked like this: 20, 4, 0, 41—-looked like an entirely reasonable progression like this: 20, 24, 30, 41, then the story of Willie May’s 600 home run would sound like this:

On June 13th, 1967 the Giants faced the Astros in an extra inning game. Willie Mays would DH for Bob Schroder in the 6th and play the rest of the game. At 599 home runs, Willie hit into a double play to end the 6th. In the 8th, with another chance to be the 2nd in the 600 club, Willie flew out to right field.

Now in extra innings, Mays would approach the right side of the plate in the top of the 10th with bases loaded. Barry Latman, the 10 year journeyman and 2 time All Star, would pitch from the stretch. At 6 foot 3 inches, he’d tower over the 5 foot 10 Willie Mays. On a 2-2 fastball, Mays would drive the ball into deep left field for number 600. (In reality, that was the story of Mays’ 550th home run).

Willie Mays’ Bat Model

Willy May's Bat

Like many players of his era, including Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays rotated between his Louisville Slugger and Adirondack. Although we assume he used more than just two models total, we could only find evidence of the famed S2 from Louisville and the M63 from the Adirondack Rawlings line.

Willie Mays’ Bat Size

Willy May's Bat

Both bats were a consistent 35 inches in all the auctions we could find. The weights varied a bit. The lightest

Game Used Willie Mays Bats

Willy May's Bat

It is almost impossible to find Willie Mays’ home run bats. The one pictured above came on his 38th home run of the 1965 season. 1965 he also hit his 500th home run. Bats like this range in the $50,000 to $125,000 marks.

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Alex Rodriguez’s Bat

After extensive internet research, and a number of conversations with collectors, the following compiles all of Alex Rodriguez’s bat information. We looked for different sizes, models, types and brands as well as some unique history and identifying features. As well, we have linked the sources we relied upon to get the best information. Our hope is it creates the most comprehensive information on Alex Rodriguez’s bat.

Alex Rodriguez's Bat

Brand Length Weight Type Model Number Years
Louisville Slugger 34, 33.75 30.7, 31, 31.2, 31.3 Ash C271, C271L, I13 1994 – 2011
Louisville Slugger  Ash T141 1994 – 1995
Sam Bat 34 30.4 Maple AR13NY 2005
Louisville Slugger 34, 33.75 30.1, 30.2, 32.1, 32.5 G174 2003 – 2004
Louisville Slugger 33.75 30.6 C271 Ken Griffey 1996
Louisville Slugger Ash P72 2005
Cooper 34 31 Ash T141 1996

What Size is Alex Rodriguez’s Bat?

Alex Rodriguez's Bat

From his start date in 1994 to his last at bat in 2016, Alex’s bat sizes are remarkably similar. More so than nearly any other player we’ve studied. Few bats were different from his 34 inch, roughly 31 ounce, bat. 32.5 ounces is the heaviest bat we could locate and 30.1 was the lightest. Most sat in the 31 or 32 ounce range even across different brands.

What Bat Model did Alex Rodriguez Use?

Alex Rodriguez's Bat

Alex was mostly loyal to Louisville Slugger bats during his 22 year career. Within that brand he used a number of different models, although his favorites appeared to be the C271L and C271. He also used the P72 (Derek Jeter’s bat model), as well as Ken Griffey’s C271 when he was with the Mariners. We confirmed that for at least 2003 and 2004, he used a G174 model from Slugger, as well, a T141 and I13 sporadically .

We also know he used at least two other brands: A Cooper T141 in the mid-90’s (reminiscent of Bo Jackson’s bat) and a Maple Sam Bat AR13NY during the mid 2000’s (reminiscent of Barry Bonds’ bat).

Alex also signed a number of other model bats. A few Rawlings Big Sticks and an Old Hickory model both had his signature and were pro model bats, but the bats were not claimed to be game used.

What was Alex Rodriguez’s Best At Bat?

Alex Rodriguez's Bat

There is a serious case to make for a number of Rodriguez at-bats that could be his ‘best’, but the first month of A-Rod’s 2007 season was an absolute burner.  He hit 14 home runs that April, 6 of which came in multi home run games. No other was more significant in terms of changing the tide of a game than the season series opener against the Orioles.

Down 6 to 7, Alex stepped into the box with the count every kid preps for. It was the bottom of the 9th, there were two outs and, of course, the bases were loaded. Chris Ray, the Orioles’ closer worked two strikes on Rodriguez. The next pitch called for an outside fastball hoping to nick the black and send the Yanks packing. But the 95 mph fastball got away from Ray and shot to the top of Alex’s strike zone. Right. Down. The. Middle. With no hesitation, Rodriguez pulled the trigger and sent the ball deep and high. Ray would point upwards hoping to direct the center fielder in the mid-day sun. Alex knew it was gone. Some 420 feet later, just right of dead center, fell Alex’s first, and ever, Grand Slam walk off. Yankees win, 10-7.

Chris Ray would undergo Tommy John’s later that year and spend another 4 or 5 years as a journey man relief guy. Alex would go on to hit a total of 156 RBI’s that season—his personal best for one season in his career. No one has hit more RBI’s than A-Rod in a single season since.

Game Used Signs of Alex Rodriguez’s Bat

Alex Rodriguez's Bat

Alex Rodriguez’s bat’s are identified by large amounts of pine tar or Mota Stick on the handle. It is also common to find cleat marks along the barrel as well, as he would hit them against his cleats between pitches. While he didn’t write his number on most of his bats, he did work with a number of auction houses around his team’s local area to verify his bats and put them in the collector’s market. eBay searches like this can usually find a couple certified examples.

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Chipper Jones’ Bat

After conferring with several sources, and examining a slew of game time pictures, we have compiled information on Chipper Jones’s Bat. Those details, along with his best at bat and details on his game used bat characteristics, are found below.

Brand Length Min Length Max Weight Min Weight Max Model Type Years
Mizuno
Glomar
Rawlings Adirondack 35 32.5 794A, MS20 Ash 2009
Louisville Slugger

Chipper Jones Bat

What Size Bat Did Chipper Jones Swing?

Chipper Jones Bat

From auction data, Chipper Jones’ bat is 35 inches and 32.5 ounces. There was not enough auction data to get a real feel for every bat he swung, but 35 inches and 32.5 ounces is a good start.

What Bat Model did Chipper Jones Use?

Chipper Jones Bat

We could not find a single image of Chipper Jones using anything but the Rawlings Adirondack. As a Mizuno swag guy, this was rather surprising. There are some claims he used Mizuno, Glomar, and Louisville Slugger occasionally. But, they were so occasional as to not appear in a single auction, or image of Jones at bat in a game.

Far and away, Chipper Jones’ preferred game model is the Rawlings Adirondack. The best we can tell is he preferred the MS20 from the left side of the plate and the 794A from the right.

Chipper Jones’ Game Used Bat Characteristics

Chipper Jones Bat

On most Chipper Jones’ Gamers, expect pine tar on the upper handle and his number (#10) written on the knob or end cup. Finding a Glamor, Slugger or Mizuno game used Jones bat would be very rare and we would be skeptical. As a switch hitter, expect ball marks on both sides of the barrel, although he often preferred one model over another for use on different sides of the plate.

Chipper Jones’ Best At Bat

Chipper Jones Bat

Chipper Jones’ most significant at-bat came on September 2, 2012. Playing the Phillies, Chipper faced Jonathan Papelbon down 5 to 7 at home in Atlanta. With a runner on 2nd and 3rd, Chipper and Papelbon would dance the count to 1 ball and 1 strike.

This would be Chipper’s third time facing Papelbon. The previous two at-bats didn’t end well for Jones—one strike-out and one ground out. With the Braves at two outs and a 99% Phillies win probability forecasted by baseball reference, things didn’t look good for Atlanta. Yet this time, on a 95 mile an hour fastball down the middle third of the plate, Chipper unleashed his 35 inch Rawlings Adirondack for a no-doubter over the right centerfield wall. A three-run shot to win the game 8-7 and send Papelbon walking off.

Chipper Jones’s Bat Sources

We checked Gold In Auctions for information on Chipper’s bat. As always, PSA bat facts was also wildly helpful in terms of images and insight. What Pros Wear had some useful information on Chipper Jones’ bat as well.

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Ichiro Suzuki’s Bat

In terms of size, type, model and brand, Ichiro Suzuki’s bat stands alone. His approach to hitting, and taking care of his hitting instrument, are unique to the cause. They should give pause to every player in the game who thinks too little about their equipment. The following summarizes a few hours of research on Ichiro Suzuki’s bat.

Brand Length Min Length Max Weight Min Weight Max Model Type Years
Mizuno 33.46  33.46 31  31.75 Mizuno Pro Tamo Wood / Ash

Ichiro Suzuki's Bat

What Size Bat Does Ichiro Suzuki Use?

Ichiro Suzuki’s bat size is remarkably consistent. In fact, of all the Major League bats we have studied, none have been more exact than Ichiro’s. The length of each bat is 34.46 inches. The weight no lighter than 31 ounces, yet not greater than 31.74 ounces.

What Bat Bat Brand Does Ichiro Suzuki Swing?

His entire career, Ichiro Suzuki swung a custom Mizuno bat. Mizuno, based in Japan, makes bats of Tamo Wood, sometimes known as Japanese Ash. Much like Derek Jeter never swung anything but the American favorite, Louisville Slugger, Ichiro is loyal to the Japanese Mizuno.

Ichiro Suzuki’s Game Used Bat Characteristics

Ichiro Suzuki's Bat

Difficult to find on the market, Ichiro’s bats are identified by their exact length of 34.46 inches and weight between 31 and 31.75 ounces. Ichiro kept remarkable care of his bats and used them only slightly. As such, pine tar and ball marks are rare. However, his respect for the bats leave very few on the open market. Throw in demand for his bats from both the US and Japan, and it is obvious why his confirmed game used bats draw a significant premium.

Ichiro Suzuki’s Best At Bat

Ichiro Suzuki's Bat

In the Majors, Ichiro only hit two walk off bombs during his entire career. Both with two outs. In June of 2013, Ichiro, then playing for the Yankees, hit a single run shot on Tanner Scheppers in the bottom of the 9th.

To win a September game in 2009, Ichiro blasted a two-run walk-off home run in the bottom of the 9th that sailed into the right field bleachers. That year he played for the Mariners in Seattle, where the game was held. Baseball references claimed it the most significant, game-changing, hit of Ichiro’s entire career. The opponent? The Yankees. The pitcher? None other than the best closer in the history of the game, Mariano Rivera.

Ichiro Suzuki’s Bat Sources

PSA bat facts, as always, is helpful in terms of bat data on major players. The Game Used Universe Forum has some interesting threads on Ichiro’s Bat. Gold In Actions is also helpful. This New York Time’s piece on Ichiro’s bat is worth a read, too. You should also like Bryce Harper’s bat.

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George Brett’s Bat

George Brett’s bat usually has consistent characteristics in terms of design, model, weight, length and game used marks. After considerable research, we take a closer look at George Brett’s bat.

Brand Length Min Length Max Weight Min Weight Max Model Type Years
Louisville Slugger 34 34.5 30.7  32.3 B351, C271, T85 Ash/White Ash 1973 -1993
Rawlings Adirondack 194VP, 387B Ash 1973 -1993

George Brett's Bat

What size bat did George Brett Use?

George Brett's Bat

The most common bat size we documented from auction houses was a 34 to 34.5-inch bat with a weight between 30.7 and 32.3 ounces. Like most players, Brett’s use of bat’s outside of those ranges should be expected.

What bat model did George Brett Use?

George Brett's Bat

George Brett preferred Louisville Slugger for his entire 21-year career. He was known to swing Rawling Adirondack occasionally but, Slugger was clearly the favorite. The most common models we identified are the C271, B351 and T85.

Slugger’s C271, his most preferred bat, was common of his era swung by the likes of Bo Jackson, Ken Griffey Jr. and Ozzie Smith. Brett is the only player we have yet documented to swing the B341 and T85.

George Brett’s Game Used Bat’s Characteristics

Pine tar, pine tar, and more pine tar. Brett, famous most of all for the pine tar incident in 1983, put pine tar well up his bat’s handle. Despite the 18-inch rule for pine tar, Brett’s bat’s exhibit pine tar upwards of 20 inches from the knob and sometimes more.

His game used bats tend to have more markings on the right side of the barrel as he was a label-up left-handed hitter. Usually expect, as well, Slugger bats in the weight and length ranges specified above.

George Brett’s Best At Bat

George Brett's Bat

In July of 1983, the Royals played the Yankees in a mid-day baseball game. In the top of the 9th, Rich Gossage (“The Goose”) took the mound against George Brett. The score 3 to 4 in favor of the Yankees and the Goose set his marks on the mound with 4 warm up pitches. On the day, Brett was two hits for four at-bats, both singles.

Brett stepped in the left-hand batter’s box with a runner on first.  Gossage’s first pitch was an outside fastball that Brett took deep, but foul, into the left field bleachers. The next pitch, a high fastball down the middle, was put it into the right-center field bleachers. It was Brett’s 145th career home run.

As Brett rounded the bases, Yankees manager Billy Martin raced to home plate to examine the amount of pine tar on Brett’s bat. Pine tar, allowed 18 inches up the bat, appeared well beyond that mark and Martin kept in the ear of the umpires as they discussed. They would lay the bat in front of home plate to measure as home plate’s width is 18 inches. While the umpires deliberated, Brett said, “if they call me out, you’re going to see four dead umpires.” After confirming pine tar exceeded the length of the plate, the umpire pointed at Brett with the knob of his bat and called him out.

Then All Hell Broke Loose

Brett ran out the dugout like a loose cannon. And he was. A Royals player ripped the bat from one of the umpires and ran it into the clubhouse. An umpire followed. Brett yelled spittle into a number of umpires faces as the Yankees came off the field, ruled the winners. Brett was physically restrained for minutes by at least two Royals players in one of the most impressive post game antics ever.

This famous pine tar incident was later reversed by the league. The remaining 1 1/3 inning were played without a single hit, two fly balls, a strike-out, and a gound out. The Royals ultimately won the game 5 to 4. Brett’s hit is recorded today in the box score as a ho-hum two-run blast in the bottom of the 9th. It was anything but ho-hum.

Brett had well over 3,000 hits in his career, 317 of those were home runs. Some Yankees fans would argue he had 316.

George Brett Bat Sources

PSA Bat Facts is always helpful and should be a go-to source for bat research. Vintage bats also has a very helpful write up on George Brett’s Bat, showing the Louisville Slugger ordering records. It documents many more bats than we could find at auction. The Pine Tar Incidence is well documented. That one sports show has a great write up.  His bat’s weight information is found at Gold In Auctions. Additional reading on the pine tar game, on this WSJ article, is worth your time.

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Honus Wagner’s Bat

Honus Wager, of baseball card fame, was also the first player to be endorsed by a bat company. Some argue he was the very first professional athlete to have any type of endorsement contract. His bat may be the most sought after piece of baseball memorabilia in existence, save possibly his baseball card. We scoured the internet and collector sites to put together this landing page for research on Honus Wagner’s Bat.

Brand Length Min Length Max Weight Min Weight Max Model Type Years
Louisville Slugger 33 3/4 36 35 43 W107, Kork Grip 1905 – 1916

Honus Wagner's Bat

What Size Bat Did Honus Wagner Use?

Honus Wagner's Bat

Although few examples exist, the ones that do, weigh no less than 35 ounces. Many Wagner bats weigh as much as 43 ounces. Length is 36 inches—very customary for the time. See, for example, Ty Cobb’s bat.

What Bat Model Did Honus Wagner Use?

Honus Wagner's Bat

Honus Wagner is largely credited as the first player to sign an endorsement deal for a signature bat. In fact, the term “signature bat” originates from the agreement Honus made with JF Hillerich and Son. (That company was soon to be known as Louisville Slugger). The agreement allowed Slugger to stamp his signature on bats.

The only record we found was of Honus Wagner using Slugger bats. These model numbers ranged over the years, but the W107 with a Kork Grip was likely his most common.

Honus Wagner’s Game Used Bat Characteristics

With only six in known existence, Honus Wagner’s bats do carry some common characteristics. As a hitter who spaced his hands apart on the handle, the grip of Wagner bats is well up the bat. That grip consisted of either a type of tape job or factory applied cork (kork).

Sizing matters too, as Hillerich & Sons produced Wagner bats for the public. But, bats for the public were shorter, in the 33-inch range, while Wagner’s game used bats were almost always 36 inches long.

Any game used Honus Wagner bat has been thoroughly vetted by the industry at large. It would be a miracle to find one that has yet to be recorded.

Honus Wagner’s Best At Bat

Honus Wagner's Bat

Honus Wagner may have recorded the first walk-off home run in history. After much research, we have to find one that predates his April 25, 1899 at bat against Jesse Tannehill. Tannehill, a 3-year starter for the Pirates, would pitch to his future teammate from the Louisville Colonels, Honus Wagner. Wagner, batting in the cleanup spot, hit a solo shot in the bottom of the 9th to break the 1 to 1 tie. The term walk-off wouldn’t be coined for another 100 years but, sure enough, Wagner was dropping walk-off bombs in the 1800’s.

The following year, Wagner was acquired by the Pirates. The rest, as they say, is history.

Honus Wagner Bat Sources

Wikipedia’s write-up on Honus Wagner’s career, and his relationship with Ty Cobb, is noteworthy. PSA Bat Facts Wagner section is valuable. We also checked in the National Pastime Museum. Mears online auction house has an interesting write up on a bat not confirmed to be Wagners. Gold In Auctions has the best write up on a game used Wagner bat.

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Shoeless Joe Jackson’s Bat

Adding any real information to the research of Shoeless Joe Jackson’s bat would be like adding a drop to the ocean. Literally, scores of internet articles and a few books have been written on both the man and his bat. As such, we don’t intend to add anything but, instead, to compile some insights to get the researcher on his way. The following comprises the information, with sources, we documented for Shoeless Joe Jackson’s bat.

Brand Length Weight Model Type Years
Hillerich and Bradsby 36 48 J13, Black Betsy Hickory 1903
Spalding 150

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

Shoeless Joe Jackson’s Game Used Bats

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

Joe Jackson’s bats are identifiable for two reasons. The first is the characteristics of the bat. These characteristics include, rather broadly, a very thick handle, a taper that lasts nearly the length of the bat, and a very dark color, at least on the barrel. The second reason his bats are identifiable is simply because there are so few of them in existence. Shoeless Joe Jackson’s verified game-used bats number less than 5. And, if you ask some, even less than that.

What Size Bat Did Shoeless Joe Jackson Use?

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

Like most in his era, Jackson’s bats were flat out heavy. At least 40 ounces in most instances and upwards of 48. His bat’s length was no smaller than 36 inches. Jackson’s sizing was typical for the dead ball era of baseball where bat speed was undervalued.

What Model Bat did Shoeless Joe Jackson Swing?

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

There is some evidence he swung a Spalding bat occasionally. But, mostly, he is known for swinging a Hillerich and Bradsby stick. One bat, in particular, was nicknamed the “Black Beauty”, and as the story goes, was made from the East side of a Hickory tree. That bat, made in 1903, broke in 1911 and Jackson sent it into H&B (aka Louisville Slugger) to be repaired.

After his banishment from baseball, a bat named ‘Black Beauty’ would be produced and sold to the public. Today, many of those are worth their weight in gold.

Shoeless Joe Jackson’s Best At Bats

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

Shoeless Joe Jackson’s dismissal from baseball is one of the great tragedies of the sport. Although acquitted of any wrongdoing by a Jury, Jackson’s assumed knowledge of his teammates’ throwing of the 1919 Series, and a confession, later recanted, of receiving payment, allowed the commissioner to ban him for life.

Shoeless was illiterate.

It has been argued before, and we will do it again here, if Shoeless Joe Jackson was a party to the throwing of the 1919 World Series by the Blacksox, then he did a terrible job at it. In fact, he played better than he had all year in his MVP (if there was such a thing that year) career. Indeed, in the 1919 Series, he hit for a .394 average, a .563 slugging percentage and a .956 OPS. His 1919 season, which was one of his best, averaged just a .351, .422 and .506 respectively.

Further, Jackson recorded 12 total hits on 32 at-bats in the Series—a record that stood for 40 years. Of his 12 hits, 3 were doubles and 1 was a home run. That home run and one of the doubles came in the elimination game. He also led the team with 5 runs and 6 RBIs. Despite several chances, Shoeless Joe would not record a single error through 8 full games.

Jackson may have known about the scandal to throw the game by his teammates. Some of the evidence suggests he at least knew or should have. And, he may have been paid for it by Lefty Williams, possibly unbeknownst to him. But, what we know for sure is this, the illiterate Shoeless Joe Jackson played to win the 1919 World Series. No doubt about it. His recanted testimony and acquittal at trial correlate to his efforts on the field. And after nearly 100 years of banishment for a lifetime sentence—which ended with his death in 1951—its time to let this man in the Hall.

#letshoelessin

Shoeless Joe Jackson’s Bat Sources

Wikipedia has a helpful article up on Black Betsy. ESPN’s write up of his bat was interesting too. Also, the bat facts section on the PSA site is invaluable. Haul’s of Shame has a write-up that will make you question everything in the memorabilia collection space. Baseball reference is, as always, invaluable.

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Carlos Santana’s Bat

After searching every imaginable place and exchanging emails with manufacturers, we gathered reliable information on the size and preferred model of Carlos Santana’s bat. Included as well, are his best at-bat to date and all the information we found on his game used bats. The sources from which we gathered the information are linked below.

Brand Length Min Length Max Weight Min Weight Max Model Type Years
Sam Bat 33.5 31 32.8 SG1 Maple 2010 – 2011
Marucci C341 2012 – 2016
Louisville Slugger H238

Carlos Santana's Bat

What Size is Carlos Santana’s Bat?

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

The heaviest bat of Santana’s we found is a 32.8 ounce Sam Bat. Others are close to that, and as far as we could tell, do not range outside the 32 to 33-ounce range. In terms of length, Santana bats are 33.5 to 34 inches long.

What Bat Model Does Carlos Satana Use?

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

Carlos Santana uses several different models. For a while we thought he would never use anything but a Sam Bat, but, more recently, we confirmed his use of Marucci’s sticks. In particular, the C341. His Sam Bat is often an SG1. In his earlier days, he often used the Slugger H238.

Carlos Santana Game Used Bat Characteristics

Don’t expect to see any grip or tape jobs on Santana’s bat. As well, the use of pine tar is limited. Expect, on the other hand, well-worn bats in the 33 to 34-inch length and the 31 to 32-ounce weight range. Sam Bats and Marucci are the most common. Outside of those two brands, be wary of a real game used Carlos Santana Bat.

Carlos Santana’s Best At Bat

Shoeless Joe Jackson's Bat

The most significant, game-changing, at bat for Carlos Santana came on April 29, 2011 (thanks to Baseball Reference for declaring it so).  With the score tied 5 to 5 in the bottom of the ninth inning, Santana would face Joaquin Beniot, a Tiger reliever at the time. With the bases loaded on a 3-1 count, Santana, from the left side of the plate, would utterly destroy a 94 mile per hour fastball. It would land over the right field fence as Santana admired the view. The Indians win 9 to 5.

Carlos Santana’s Bat Sources

Collections Auctions Bat section has some helpful information on Santana bats. As well, Gold In Auctions Santana auction is helpful and amazing. We also referred to Pristine Auctions for some Santana bat insight. The Baseball Reference Guide for Santana is, as always, invaluable.

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Roberto Clemente’s Bat

Despite his bat being deemed a rare find, Roberto Clemente’s bat details are found everywhere. No surprise, considering he may be the best Pittsburgh Pirate to ever play the game, and with his untimely death, left a hole in the story of what would have been. Here we attempt to consolidate information on bat sizing, models, and game used information. This serves as a starting point for research on the Puerto Rican Roberto Clemente’s bat.

Brand Length Min Length Max Weight Min Weight Max Model Type Years
Louisville Slugger 34.5 36 31.4, 36 38 U1, G105 1955 – 1972
Rawlings Adirondack 37.75 129 1968 – 1970

Roberto Clemente's Bat

What Size Bat Did Roberto Clemente Use?

Roberto Clemente's Bat

Roberto Clemente swung the largest post-WWII bat we have yet to document. Often swinging bats as heavy as 38 ounces, his bats were clubs compared to many others of his era. Willy Mays and Hank Aaron, for example, never swung anything more than a 35-ounce bat. Even by pre-WWII standards, Clemente’s bat was heavy. Ruth and Gehrig would have been impressed.

We found one auction where the bat weight measured at 31.4 ounces. However, this came from his rookie season. Through his prime and later in his career, he regularly used the large 38-ounce bats.

What Bat Model Did Roberto Clemente Use?

Roberto Clemente's Bat

The data gathered shows Clemente preferred Louisville Slugger’s U1 much of the time. However, he spent time swinging the G105 and, we would guess, a number of other models from the ever present Hillerich and Bradsby.

Game Used Roberto Clemente Bats

The enormous sizing makes a number of Clemente bats recognizable. No others, were 38 ounces. Additionally, on some of his bats, Clemente would carve light grooves in the barrel—believing this grip would create better backspin on the ball for better flight carry. We debunk much of this at justbatreviews.com in the best baseball bats section. Expect, as well, his jersey number (21) written on the bat’s knob.

Roberto Clemente’s Best At Bat

Roberto Clemente's Bat

In the second to last game of the 1972 season, Roberto Clemente, with 2,999 hits for his career, dinked a slow roller to 2nd base in the bottom of the 1st. He would beat the throw to first, but the official scorekeeper ruled the player an error. The remaining at-bats for the game would include a strikeout, fly out and ground out. Hence, his 0-4 day left him at 2,999 hits going into the final game of the season.

The following day, in the bottom of the 1st, Clemente stuck out. In the bottom of the 4th, against pitcher Pitcher Joe Matlock of Mets fame, Clemente drove a fastball on a rope to the left-centerfield gap. He would sprint to first and jog it out to second for a stand-up double. At the time, he was the 11th player to hit for 3,000 hits and the second, save Honus Wagner, to do it in a Pirates uniform.

It was the last at-bat of Clemente’s season, and little did we all know, it would be the last at-bat of Clemente’s career. Tragically, in December of that year, a plane carrying Roberto Clemente and his humanitarian efforts to the earthquake victims of Nicaragua would crash. There were no survivors. Puerto Rico would hold three days of national mourning.

Roberto Clemente’s Bat Sources

There is a fascinatingly long story about the bat Clemente used for his 3,000th hit. An ESPN writer gives his first-hand account here. PSA bat facts is helpful. Check out Gold In Auction’s Clemente bat auction too. Mears Auction house has some decent sizing information dates. VSA Auctions on Clemente’s bat was used. You can read some of the details of Clemente’s plane crash in this New York Time’s Piece.

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David Ortiz’s Bat

The data below represents our attempt to gather all the information on the internet about David Ortiz’s bat through hours of online research, mlb.tv game footage and exchanging some text with collectors. Our intent is to cover everything imaginable about David Ortiz’s bat including size, weight, length, brand and model as well as what years he used what bat. Many of the sources we used are toward the bottom of this article on David Ortiz’s bat.

Brand Length Weight Type Model Years
Marucci 34.5 32.8, 33.4 Maple DO34, Papi 34 2012 – 2015
Nakona 34.5 32 Maple 2009 – 2010
Rawlings Adirondack 34.5 30.7, 31.6, 32.1, 32 456B 2005 – 2008
X Bat 34.5 32.3, 32.5 Model 24 2004 – 2007
Louisville Slugger 34.5, 33.75 30.8, 31.1  Ash O76, C243 1997 – 2004

David Ortiz's Bat
Unlike a lot of pro model versions, you can actually buy a David Ortiz game bat with an Amazon search like this. As well, eBay often has game used bats of David Ortiz on auction.

What Bat Does David Ortiz Use?

David Ortiz's Bat

Ortiz, like most MLBers,  has used many different makes and models in his career. Our chart above simplifies something that is not that simple. Ortiz likely used a number of different bats during any given season or, frankly, any given game. However, roughly speaking, we found the bats listed above in auction, attributed to those specific years.

More particularly, during his Twins’ years, Ortiz most often used Louisville Slugger’s C243. There is some evidence of the O76 model from Slugger, too. We could not find evidence Big Papi used Slugger any time after 2004. However, we could find his use of the X-Bat 24, a significant number of Rawlings Adirondack 456B and a splurge on Nakona bats in 2009 and 2010. Around the start of the decade, Ortiz appears settled on Marucci’s Papi 34 formerly known as DO34.

It would appear Ortiz prefers maple—as many big hitters do—but we found some evidence of him using ash bats as well.

What Size is David Ortiz’s Bat?

David Ortiz's Bat

Outside of his rookie year, Ortiz swings a 34.5 inch bat religiously. Across brands it didn’t matter. As the weight of wood varies, so does David Ortiz’s bat weight. The average is around 32.5 ounces (making his bat a natural drop 2), but they ranged as low as 30.7 and as high as 33.8. The only real trend we notice is his more recent bats rarely come in under the 32.5 ounce weight. No where close to the like’s of Babe Ruth and David Winfield.

David Ortiz’s Best At Bat

David Ortiz's Bat

On June 11, 2006 at Fenway Park, the Red Sox played the Rangers in an inter-league game. At roughly 2:45pm the Red Sox looked beat. It was the bottom of the ninth. The Sox were down 2 to 4. Ortiz, the designated hitter that day sitting in the three spot, stood in the box. Akinori Otsuka, the Japanese transfer, and now closer, for the Texas Rangers, was on the mound. Starting the 9th inning, Otsuka forced a ground ball for the first out. His 2nd and 3rd hitters lined singles up the middle. The fourth hitter flied out to right field and the runners did not advance.

Otsuka would work the count to two balls and two strikes before getting Papi to foul off another pitch. With two strikes, two runners on, down by two in the bottom of the ninth, SABER metrics would portray the chances of the Red Sox winning at almost nil. Yet, on that final pitch of the game, Big Papi would drill an Otsuka heater into deep right and over the wall. A three run shot to walk it off. It would be the most significant game-changing at bat of his entire career.

David Ortiz Game Used Bats Info

David Ortiz's Bat

Ortiz’s game used bats are readily available on the market. Searches on ebay (like this) and Amazon (like this) usually turn up a few specimens. Ortiz’s long career offer a variety of gamers for any collector. His grip has changed from tar, to athletic tape, to Lizard Skin Grip. Massive ball marks can be found on good specimens, as Ortiz hits very hard. Boston Red Sox game used bats tend to be more expensive than his Twins’ days, but they are all very collectible.

David Ortiz Bat Sources

PSA’s Bat facts for David Ortiz were very helpful. Goldinauctions.com is always good for Ortiz sizing information on the particular models they auction. What Pros Wear had some limited information on Ortiz’s Marucci bat. Bidami, if you are up for some searching, is always good for some weight and model number information and they have plenty of David Ortiz Bat info. Also, we found some Ortiz rookie bats at Huggins and Scott auction house.

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