Gearing up for Baseball – Lindsey Naber with Rawlings Sporting Goods® Gives Us a Glimpse of What’s New With This Season’s Baseball Gear
Baseball is in the air! Most major league baseball teams around the nation will be celebrating opening day on their home fields over the next few weeks. College and high school baseball is in full swing and parents are thinking about baseball gear for kid’s little league and summer camps.
We were fortunate to spend a little time with Lindsey Naber, marketing manager of key accounts at Rawlings Sporting Goods®, one of our key PORON® Performers, who was kind enough to let us know what we will be seeing on field this season.
Q: Can you give us an idea of some of the new baseball gear we will be seeing at the amateur level this season?
Customization is a trend that is particularly happening with kids right now. They are looking to create their own individuality while still being part of the team.
Q: How is Rawlings addressing this trend?
We are offering a custom batter’s helmet and glove program. Our CoolFlo® Helmet is available in a variety of new colors, and also in two-tone colorways to match team colors.
Our custom glove program is very popular! Kids can now get the same custom treatment to our glove selection as our Rawlings Pro Advisory Staff Members. We can personalize any of one of our recommended gloves, or even a pro’s glove, by selecting a from a broad range of options to include: the kind of leather, shell color, web design and color, padding, embroidery, and more!
We also offer bats that are tailored to meet a variety of athletes’ individual needs. We understand that no swing is the same, so we’ve created options to appeal to each type of player whether they are a power-hitter or perhaps a smaller athlete looking to increase their swing speed.
Q: Speaking of bats, we’ve been hearing quite a bit about the new BBCOR bat standards. Can you tell us a bit about that and how Rawlings has addressed it?
BBCOR (Bat-Ball Coefficient of Restitution) is NCAA®’s new system of measuring bat power – the amount of energy lost when a ball collides with a bat. The higher number indicates a greater trampoline effect, referring to the velocity of a batted ball. Prior to these new regulations, balls hit with composite bats, which are now banned by the NFHS and NCAA, were packing too much heat and causing safety concerns. Now all high school and college teams need to use BBCOR regulated bats, which puts everyone on a level playing field. Rawlings’ new 5150 Alloy, 5150Velo, Machine and Plasma bats are all BBCOR Certified and approved for high school and collegiate play.
Q: Rawlings spends an extraordinary amount of time on research, development and testing to make sure its products are the safest on the market to keep players in the game. Would you say that style and comfort are equally important?
Products can be as safe as they can be, but often times not worn because players think they look or fit funny. If the product looks and feels good, players are more apt to keep wearing it, which will keep players protected as much as possible.
Q: Congratulations on Rawlings’ 125th anniversary! Are there any specific promotions Rawlings is planning for this special occasion?
Yes! We have created a 125th anniversary glove collection – several which feature PORON® XRD™ palm protection I might add – that features retro designs combined with new technologies. We are also conducting a “125 Giveaways in 125 Days” promo on the Rawlings Facebook page, which we launched on March 19th. Entrants have the chance to win a new Rawlings product each day.
Q: We just have to ask…Who is your favorite MLB team?
Personally, my favorite team is the Cardinals having grown up here in St. Louis. I can’t show my bias too much though as we have endorsers on every team. I’m not supposed to play favorites!