As high school baseball teams in Iowa get ready for pre-season practice the players will have to get used to different types of bats. New rules in place will make the barrel of aluminum bats narrower and the bat itself heavier. Lee Toole is the coach at Lewis Central High School and also a member of the baseball advisory board for the Iowa State High School Athletic Association. He says the regulations are designed to cut down a large increase in home runs and improve safety for pitchers. He says they’ve been studying the issue for the last ten years.One study concluded that home runs had quadrupled at the high school level in recent years and Toole says the power surge has been evident, especially when lighter bats came out and the hardness of the baseball stayed the same. Last year the baseball was softer, and he says that decreased the number of home runs. Toole says the changes involve both weight and diameter of the barrel. He says they want the bats to be more like a wooden bat.Toole says the changes should inject more bunting into the game. He says the home run will still be there, but it will take more of a true hit and straight shot to hit the ball out.The high school baseball season opens across the state on May 21st.
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