Aluminum Bats: Easton Maco Torq
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Easton Mako Torq Aluminum Bats: WORST Mistake You Can Make Right Now

 

Aluminum Bats: Easton Mako Torq

Photo courtesy: Easton.com

Let me be clear about the objective of this article.  There are bats, and there are hitting aids.  Easton Mako Torq aluminum bats have attempted to fuse both together.  This is fine, but the price point is high ($280-550) when compared to a simplified alternative.

We HAVE to scrutinize hitting aids with science, like we do efficient hitting movements.  If you haven’t heard of Easton Mako Torq aluminum bats yet, then here you go…

Key product marketing differentiation says they use “360-degree Torq Rotating Handle Technology”.  Easton’s claim is to stop a hitter from rolling their hands over at contact.  Their launch video says these aluminum bats help to be “short to the ball”, “square up more pitches”, “get to the zone faster”, and “stay in the zone longer”.

Let’s answer these THREE questions:

  • Is rolling over a big problem?
  • What do cues like being “short to the ball” really mean? And,
  • What is a better more affordable hitting aid than the Easton Mako Torq?

 

Is Rolling Over a Big Problem?

HUGE!  Three reasons why:

  1. Youth level coaches instruct players to hit the ball on the ground because fielders can’t play catch,
  2. Misinformed coaches have “hands” dominant swing approaches, and
  3. Coaches use rapid fire “quick hands” toss drills.

Point #1 doesn’t transfer to the bigger field, where 95+% of ground-balls are outs.  The hands DO NOT create bat speed on their own.  They merely amplify energy transfer originating in the torso.

Point #3 isn’t practicing like we’re going to play. A hitter has around 20-30 seconds between each pitch, so the goal is NOT how many balls we can hit in five seconds.

What Do Cues like Being “Short to the Ball” Really Mean?

Mako Torq Aluminum Bats: Short to the ball? (Ryan Braun)

Ryan Braun photo courtesy: MLB.com

The marketing for Easton Mako Torq aluminum bats promise – that by using their bat – a hitter will:

  • “Be short to the ball”,
  • “Square up more pitches”,
  • “Get to the zone faster”, and
  • “Stay in the zone longer”.

Let’s briefly break these claims down…

“Be short to the ball”

It’s not how short a hitter can be to the ball, but how quickly they can get the barrel on the plane of the pitch.  Easton Mako Torq aluminum bats DO NOT help with this.

“Square up more pitches”

If rolling handle technology can counteract a hitter from rolling their wrist over at contact, then this may be true, sometimes.  Squaring up more pitches has MORE to do with a hitter’s timing.  Also, where a hitter makes contact in the impact zone can be the difference between hitting the sweet spot consistently or not.  Unfortunately, the Easton Maco Torq DOES NOT help with timing or a hitter’s contact point.

“Get to the zone faster”

Getting to the zone (impact zone I assume) is all about the Conservation of Angular Momentum.  Since a hitter doesn’t know which type of pitch, speed, and location beforehand, it’s a race – after a decision to swing has been made – to get the barrel on the pitch plane as soon as possible.  In order to spin faster, the hitter MUST stay tight in the turn until the barrel is on plane.

“Stay in the Zone longer”

Here’s where I think Easton Mako Torq aluminum bats hit the mark.  IF – and it is a BIG “if” – these bats can stop rolling over, then a hitter’s “stay through” will get better.  But at a price ($280-550).  And once the hitter has to swing a normal “one-piece” bat, then I’m not sure if the anti-roll over mechanics would transfer.  I don’t see higher levels adopting Easton Mako Torq aluminum bats.

 

What is a Better More Affordable Hitting Aid than the Easton Mako Torq?

Aluminum Bats: Prohammer Bat

ProHammer Bat photo courtesy: PHBat.com

Easton Mako Torq aluminum bats are an expensive fusion of bat and hitting aid.  If you’re looking for a hitting aid that:

  • Provides great feedback for rolling OR not rolling the wrist at contact
  • Hitters can use for dry swings, tee, soft toss, and LIVE batting practice…
  • Improves eye-hand coordination with a slim hit-able surface…AND…

Post UPDATE: By the way, about a couple months after publishing this YouTube and article (when it began to gain serious traction – and as of this ‘update’ the video has been viewed almost 80K times on YouTube), one of Easton’s engineers contacted me VERY unprofessionally.  Clearly he had a bone to pick.  Saying I had zero ground to stand on, and how could I ‘bad mouth’ their precious Mako Torq technology…that I didn’t know what I was talking about.  What’s laughable is that this “engineer” couldn’t supply me with credible studies that supported their claims…he said they had them, but he wouldn’t share.  Hmmmm…

Let me be clear, I LOVE Easton bats, and preferred them well over Louisville Slugger’s. However, I don’t agree with their opinion on Torq technology benefits.

From what I’ve heard, Easton purchased the patent from a High School player who made the technology, in wood shop class, to alleviate pain in his wrist when swinging.  IT WORKED!!  If Easton would have marketed it based on that, there would be no discussion.  But I feel they stretched the technology truth a bit too much.  You be the judge.

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Joey Myers

I’m a member of the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), the International Youth and Conditioning Association (IYCA), and the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR).I’m also a HUGE supporter of the Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA).

I’ve spent 11+ years in the corrective fitness industry, and have too many alphabet-soup certifications to bore you with.I also played four years of Division One baseball at Fresno State from 2000-2003.

It’s NOT how you study, but what you study that counts.I apply human movement principles (or rules), validated by science, to hitting a baseball and softball.
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7 replies
  1. Bob
    Bob says:

    From what I gathered, this is just another tin bat. As far as I’m concerned, as soon as a kid is serious about baseball, and as soon as they can use a barrel larger than 2 1/4 inches, they should dump the compo and tin a switch to wood. So this is all academic. Who cares about this bat, it’s a toy – and they should sell them at TOYS R US, or Wal Mart. College baseball still uses them, as they say … because wood bats are more expensive in the long run because they break. That’s BS as far as I’m concerned. There are many alternatives to using play-toy bats, such as McDougalls, Bamboo, or those bats that have compo handles but wood barrels. I think College baseball uses them because they are getting some endorsement money, weather they want to disclose that or not. It’s the only reason I can think of – there are just too many alternatives that come closer to all wood that they could use. Check out the Mine bat site – and there are dozens of others. They may also want to boost enrollment because they want players to go there for 4 years, and draw all the fans etc., because there is huge money in it. Like college basketball and football, with their billion dollar T.V. contracts. College baseball is not as big, but the last thing they want is to have some kid who they can market as a big time, blue chip prospect come in and only hit 310 feet to dead center on a good day. They want to see those bombs to put people in the seats.

    So just forget this piece of junk, get your hands on a good wood bat and play some real baseball.

    Reply
    • Joey Myers
      Joey Myers says:

      I totally agree with you Bob. If you think about it, college and even High School baseball isn’t where all the money is in aluminum bats. It’s in Youth baseball and softball. They have the bigger pools of players (and paying parents) to choose from. I think these levels are the ones getting exploited. At the end of the 2008 youth baseball season, there were 2.6 million Little Leaguers worldwide. And 400,000 youth softball players. This was according to LittleLeague.org stats. At Fresno State, we all got “free” bats. Not sure if our program paid for them or not, but we were definitely sponsored by Easton or Louisville. I think it’s a publicity play for these companies. Just like in fashion. Get celebrities wearing your clothes in the open where the masses can see. The money isn’t in the celebrities, it’s in the masses.

      Reply
  2. Bob
    Bob says:

    Easton supplies the LLWS as well don’t they? Without getting too political in this forum, they make a ton of money off that event, and there are parents who basically shell out their life savings to have their kid play ball in that tournament. Major Jr. hockey in Canada is under the gun now because most of those players are working age, and they get little compensation for basically playing in a pro league. With the revenues from the gate, parking, food sales, souvenirs, T.V., etc. and the World Jr. Championship at Xmas, Major Hockey is walking away with wheel barrels full of money … and the players want some.

    There is a movement afoot to form a players union to negotiate paying the players.

    Many, if not most, of those franchises are now owned by former NHL players, and there are big dollars involved. There’s no crime against making a buck, but … if that’s the argument for the owners side, then it certainly can be used by the other side too. If the people that make the kind of money we know gets generated by sports that are developmental leagues for the pros (in all sports), and have a clear conscience doing it, then it should be open season on anyone who can prove they have a legal, if not moral right to their share. That goes for University Sports too.

    These kids spend years and and lots of money to play a sport. Some do it because they love it and want to make it their life’s work, some because they want scholarships, etc. I asked my son this question … “What if you had the choice of working in a gas station for 12 bucks and hour, or playing in the MLB for 12 bucks an hour … which would you take?” Guess which one he picked?

    Back to the bat … if you want a faster, cleaner, shorter, or whatever other words they want to use to describe the swing you’ll have if you get their bat, just forget it and do what Joey says to do.

    Reply
    • Joey Myers
      Joey Myers says:

      I agree Bob, working on clean efficient mechanics doesn’t cost a thing. Didn’t know that about hockey, but I’m not surprised. Thanks for sharing (as usual 😉 that information.

      Reply
  3. cac
    cac says:

    Each kid on each team in the llws tournament gets the latest generation bats from Easton for free… they even have the choice of swinging it or not.

    Reply
  4. Michael Horton
    Michael Horton says:

    It is not conservation of angular momentum that you’re talking about, just angular momentum. Your link to the conservation page is dead anyhow.
    Many of these aids are necessary because little league coaches teach kids to use heavy bats. Then they develop bad habits like long swings and rolling over. If heavy bats were better, they wouldn’t make rules about minimum weights and maximum drops.

    Reply
    • Joey Myers
      Joey Myers says:

      Michael, saying I’m actually talking about “Angular Momentum” versus the “Conservation of Angular Momentum” is like calling “Bob”, “Robert”. It’s the same thing. I’m talking about conserving Linear into Angular Momentum. I fixed the link by the way, which will shed light on what I’m talking about.

      Reply

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