What Companies Make Wooden Baseball Bats? in-depth rundown

The world of baseball is always evolving, especially when it comes to baseball bats. In Major League Baseball, players are required to use wooden bats with specific specifications like barrel shape and diameter.

And when the rules are strict, the quality and skill of the bat manufacturers become extremely important. New brands come up every year, and the baseball bat is where you see the most innovation and craftsmanship.

Now, if you’re planning on picking up a wooden baseball bat for the coming season, I’m sure you’re wondering which brands even make them. I mean, amateur baseball leagues are usually played with alloy or composite bats, right?

Here, I will give you an in-depth rundown on what companies make wooden baseball bats and offer a deep dive into the plate share of different bat manufacturers.

But if you don’t the detailed discussion, here’s the TL;DR:

  • Marucci
  • Louisville Slugger
  • Victus
  • Old Hickory
  • Chandler
  • B45
  • Tucci Lumber
  • Rawlings
  • Sam Bat
  • Under Armour
  • Dove Tail Bats
  • Mizuno

What Companies Make Wooden Baseball Bats? Top Wooden Baseball Bat Manufacturers

Wooden baseball bats are the choice of the professionals. Yes, they have certain limitations, such as they break easily or take a lot of skill to learn to use properly, but in MLB games, wooden bats are the only ones that are allowed. Using a composite or alloy baseball bat is a strict no-no.

What Companies Make Wooden Baseball Bats?
Image Credit: Africa images

Of course, there are many amateurs who like to collect and play with wooden bats. And if you’re planning on picking up a wooden bat for yourself, you must be wondering which bat companies make the best wooden baseball bats.

Well, there are around 34 MLB-approved baseball bat companies out there. But I’m sure you understand how it can be difficult for me to talk about all of them. So, let me address some of the popular ones who have the highest percentage of plate shares in the scene.

Don’t know what plate share means? I’ll talk about it later, so make sure you stick to the end!

1. Marucci

Marucci is the lovechild of the former MLB pro Kurt Ainsworth and entrepreneur Jack Marucci. Established in 2022, this brand quickly rose to fame because of its high-end baseball bats and gloves.

Image Credit: Marucci, facebook

Consistency, innovation, and customization – these are the three pillars of the brand. Their innovative designs and the option to customize the wood type or barrel thickness let you buy a bat that’s tailor-made just for you.

Marucci is a top manufacturer of high-end wooden baseball bats, and it almost always secures the top spot in MLB plate share. That should give you an idea of how trustworthy the brand is when it comes to manufacturing wooden bats.

2. Louisville Slugger

In the baseball world, no other name is as iconic as Louisville Slugger. This brand has a rich history with the sport dating back to as early as the late 19th century. Even to this day, they maintain a consistent appearance in the hands of MLB pros.

Louisville Slugger
Image Credit: Louisville Slugger, facebook

Louisville Slugger is known not only for their baseball bats, however. Their high-quality pitching machines are also worth mentioning. In fact, when I was young, honing my craft in the game, I owned a Louisville Slugger Black Flame Pitching Machine myself that I used extensively.

Regardless, they are a top brand that manufactures quality wooden baseball bats. Before Marucci came along, every pro would use a Louisville Slugger baseball bat.

3. Victus

While both Louisville Slugger and Marucci manufacture wooden bats, they also produce baseball bats made of alloy or composite for different player groups. However, with Victus, wood is the only material you’ll find.

Image Credit: VictusSports, facebook

Victus was formed in 2012 but as of 2017, it was acquired by Marucci. They have three different wooden baseball bat series – the Show, the Grit, and the Limited.

These days, it’s often a battle between Victus and Marucci when it comes to plate share. So, if you plan on getting a Victus wooden baseball bat, you can be certain that it won’t disappoint you.

4. Old Hickory

The first time I saw the name, Old Hickory, I had to take a second glance – do they still make baseball bats out of Hickory? Nope – they’re still made of maple, birch, or ash. Old Hickory is simply the name of an amazing bat manufacturer. 

Old Hickory
Image Credit: OldHickoryBats, facebook

Established in 1999, Old Hickory Bat Company started its journey from a small garage in Nashville, Tennessee. They mostly catered to local players at the time, but soon after, their popularity became widespread. And today, they are one of the most well-known bat manufacturers for MLB professionals.

Similar to Victus, Old Hickory deals exclusively in wooden baseball bats. Their commitment to crafting high-quality and durable wooden baseball bats earns them a consistent spot on the plate each year.

5. Chandler

Chandler is a relatively new entry in the scene, but the name spread like wildfire in the Pro scene. Established only in 2009, the brand quickly rose to infamy because of its innovative design and intricate craftsmanship.

Image Credit: ChandlerBats, facebook

Perhaps the most notable part of Chandler baseball bats is their booming crack that echoes through the stands when the player gets a good connection on the ball. Chandler bats are often considered the gold standard among the pros and elites in the sport.

Chandler Bats was acquired by Yoenis Céspedes’ YC52, LLC in 2019, and they have been on a steady upward climb ever since. They managed to make a consistent appearance on the plate these past couple of years at the hands of different pros.

Similar to Victus and Old Hickory, they manufacture wooden bats only. It’s a premium wooden bat manufacturer for players of all skill levels.

6. Honorary Mentions:

The world of baseball is pretty dynamic and while many brands can’t make it to the top five list, they still deserve a mention. Here are a couple of brands that manufacture high-end wooden baseball bats –

  • B45
  • Tucci Lumber
  • Rawlings
  • Sam Bat
  • Under Armour
  • Dove Tail Bats
  • Mizuno

Baseball Bat Usage in MLB Opening Day (Last 5 Years)

Professional MLB players are always switching up their gears. And watching your favorite player switching to a different brand for their baseball bat is pretty common. Let’s call the percentage of players using a specific brand’s baseball bat the plate share of the brand.

I will only talk about the top five spots since mentioning all the top baseball bat brands won’t be very helpful and might confuse you even further. With that said, let’s take a look at the popularity of different baseball bat brands on the opening day of the MLB the past five years.

2019 Opening Day Bat Usage

Marucci was a dominant figure in the MLB scene in 2019 and had a plate share of 28.83 percent. The closest competitor to Marucci was Victus who held a plate share of 18.36 percent.

The following three spots went to Louisville Slugger, Old Hickory and Sam Bat with their plate share of 13.67 percent, 11.33 percent, and 6.44 percent plate shares, respectively.

Here’s a quick chart showcasing the presence of different brands in 2019 opening day of MLB:

PositionBrand NamePlate Share (Percentage)
3Louisville Slugger13.67
4Old Hickory11.33
5Sam Bat6.44

Chandler, a prominent brand in the MLB scene, didn’t quite make the cut this year since their plate share was only at 5.47 percent, which was pretty close to Rawlings at 5.08 percent. However, in the following years, Chandler would consistently claim the top-five spot.

2020 MLB Opening Day Bat Usage

In 2020, you’ll see more of the same things, or rather pretty much the same brands dominating the leaderboards in plate shares. Marucci held its top spot with 23.70 percent plate share, with Victus trailing behind slightly with a plate share of 19.26 percent.

Louisville Slugger had a plate share of 16.67 percent, claiming the third place and Old Hickory came in fourth with a 10.75 percent plate share, and Chandler managed to sneak into the list with their 9.26 percent plate share.

Here’s a chart for the year of 2020 MLB opening day bat usage:

PositionBrand NamePlate Share (Percentage)
3Louisville Slugger16.67
4Old Hickory10.74

While Sam Bat was out of the running for the top five spot, they still managed to claim sixth place with their 4.07 percent plate share. Rawlings, on the other hand, only had a 2.59 percent plate share but managed to get seventh place, beating out Tucci, who had a 2.22 percent plate share.

2021 MLB Opening Day Bat Usage

The year 2021 was a good year for Louisville Slugger. While they had a consistent appearance in third place in the two prior years, in 2021, they managed to secure the second spot, sending Victus to the third position. The plate share percentage for Louisville Slugger and Victus was 18.04 and 15.29 percent, respectively.

Marucci, as always, maintained their lead with their 25.88 percent plate share, claiming the top spot. Old Hickory, with their 10.2 percent plate shared, secured fourth place, while Chandler maintained their fifth spot with their 9.41 plate share percentage.

Here’s a chart showing the top-five baseball bat brands with the highest plate share in 2021:

PositionBrand NamePlate Share (Percentage)
2      Louisville Slugger18.04
4Old Hickory10.2

As you can see, the plate share for almost all the top five brands saw an increase in 2021. That’s also true for some of the brands that are below the list. Rawlings, for instance, saw an increased plate share of 3.14 percent. However, the plate share for brands like Trinity, Zinger, and Warstic was at a measly 0.34 percent.

2022 MLB Opening Day Bat Usage

2022 was an amazing year for Victus. Since their acquisition by Marucci in 2017, they have struggled with claiming the top spot in terms of plate share. However, in 2022, they managed to edge out Marucci by securing 25.93 percent of the plate share, claiming the top spot in the leaderboards.

Marucci wasn’t too far behind, though. With their 22.59 percent plate share, they were still a prominent figure in the 2022 MLB scene. Louisville Slugger went back to their usual top 3 finish with a 15.93 percent plate share. For Old Hickory, the plate share went up to 10.74 percent, and Chandler managed to get a 6.30 percent plate share.

Let’s take a look at how the year 2022 affected different brand’s plate share in the MLB scene:

PositionBrand NamePlate Share
3Louisville Slugger15.93
4Old Hickory10.74

Below the top-five board, there was a major shift in power dynamics. Rawlings, who had a pretty respectable plate share so far, went down to only .74 percent. Mizuno made an appearance on the board with a similar plate share percentage. Brands like Tucci Lumber and B45, on the other hand, had a noticeable bump in their appearance. 

2023 MLB Opening Day Bat Usage

And finally, we arrive at the year 2023. Remember how Victus beat out Marucci the previous year? Well, Marucci is back on top once again, and they look stronger than ever with their 23.9 percent plate share. Their sister company, Victus, is still not far behind with their 22.8 percent plate share.

Louisville Slugger once again managed to secure their third spot this year with a plate share of 14.6 percent. For the fourth place, Chandler replaced Old Hickory with a 10.40 percent plate share, and Old Hickory secured the fifth spot with a 10.1 percent share on the plate.

Here’s a rundown of different baseball bat brands and their plate shares for the year 2023:

PositionBrand NamePlate Share (Percentage)
3Louisville Slugger14.6
5Old Hickory10.1

Among the other brands that didn’t make the list, the most notable mention would be Tucci Lumber, with its 3.7 percent plate share, and Dove Tail Bats, with a plate share of 2.2 percent. However, this year, the MLB is mostly being dominated by the top five brands in the industry.

Does the Plate Share Mean Anything for a Baseball Bat Brand?

Not necessarily. You see, the plate share percentage gives you a quick look at how many pros are using which brand of baseball bats, but as a casual player or even someone who plays in the amateur leagues, this doesn’t mean much.

Professional players are always approached by different brands for endorsement, and when a player gets endorsed by a specific brand, he’s naturally obligated to use their bats.

If you want to buy a wooden baseball bat, don’t let the plate share of the brand sway your judgment. Focus solely on the quality of the bat and how it feels in your hand, and you should be able to land on a bat that’s perfect for your play style.

Let’s Recap

Wooden baseball bats are an undeniable part of the MLB scene. And while we have made many technological strides in the world of baseball, the pros still stand by their trusty wooden bats every single game.

As for their manufacturers, there are many brands that are amazing. Brands like Marucci and Louisville Slugger might be more popular because of their superior plate share, but that doesn’t mean Tucci Lumber or Sam Bat is a bad brand. So don’t let the brand name dictate your preference when you’re thinking of buying one.


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