Bat change challenges Louisville baseball

Made it out to Jim Patterson Stadium Sunday, a perfect day for baseball. Nice crowd, in the neighborhood of 2,000 fans. Returned home with two foul balls.

Only thing missing were the three, four or more home runs per game University of Louisville fans have grown accustomed to since Dan McDonnell arrived four seasons ago. The offensive juggernaut that was U of L baseball is off its stride.

Don’t blame it on the coach and his recruiting. McDonnell lost eight players to the Major League Baseball draft last season and he has some good up-and-comers. Something else is affecting the college game.

The NCAA implemented a rule this season that the aluminum bats should perform more like wooden bats, explaining that less potent bats would make the game safer. Specifically for pitchers, providing them more protection from line drives. As a result, the college game has moved from being geared to hitters to one that favors pitchers.

McDonnell has reservations about the bat change, but as he told College Baseball Daily:

“At the end of the day, baseball is baseball. You have to throw strikes, you have to make plays, and you have to get timely hits to score runs. Maybe there are a few less home runs, but only time will tell.”

After 28 games this season, U of L has 14 home runs. That’s an average of one every other game.

Share this

Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.