For three days, gone are the rules that restrict bat colors to a handful of finishes and reduce logos and player name-branding. This upcoming bastion of rule relaxation comes in the form of Players Weekend, Aug. 25-27, and we will see all manner of designs because of it.
Louisville Slugger has encouraged its players to go well beyond the norm, offering all manner of color and decoration in its customizable wood bat line for the three-day event.
For the first time ever, outside of the pink used on Mother’s Day, players will be able to use bat colors that are normally restricted, in addition to using whatever name they want on the bats. Traditional finishes--natural, flame-tempered natural, black, brown, wine, gray and black cherry--now get joined by bright yellows, blues, reds and more. Players have selected everything from team colors to personal favorites. And they've also taken the opportunity to adorn the bat with nicknames--players can wear a nickname on the back of their uniform as part of the weekend--or place a name on the bat as a way to honor someone special in their lives.
Louisville Slugger bats made for Players Weekend also have the Evolution logo branded on the back of the barrel. As the Official Bat of Major League Baseball, Louisville Slugger bats are the only bats permitted to include a back brand. The MLB and Louisville Slugger's PRIME logos are traditionally used for back branding.
-- Tim Newcomb covers gear and business for Baseball America. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.