Japanese Major League hitter cares for his bats as though they were violins

An interesting article in the New York Times about how Ichiro Suzuki, now on the Yankees, keeps his bats in a shockproof, moisture-free black case by which he controls their moisture level.

For Suzuki, a preeminent scientist in the field of hitting, regulating the amount of moisture in his bat is critical to the touch and feel of it. A hard, dry bat with just the right amount of water content has helped Suzuki become one of the best hitters in the game. Since he came to the United States in 2001 to play for the Seattle Mariners, he has led all of baseball in regular-season hits on seven occasions and recorded 200 hits in each of his first 10 seasons.

Apparently, that cannot be done with spongy, sweaty bats.

“The moment when the ball leaves the bat, that feeling of a moist bat, it doesn’t feel as good,” he said. “That feel of the ball coming off the bat is different.”

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 25, 2012 02:21 PM | Send

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