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Easton Rebuilds BBCOR Technology In New Project 3 Bat Line

Trevor Anderson, Easton’s director of product development, says it was time to take a look at the California company’s BBCOR line from knob to cap. The multi-year project, dubbed internally as Project 3 for the -3 drop, has now gone public, full of new technology and with a Project 3 name to signify it all.

The new Project 3 line includes five new bats from Easton, but really, Anderson says, three of them make up the bulk of the line, from ADV to Fuse to Alpha.

The ADV, the highest price-point in the new Project 3 line, offers a fresh take on a composite two-piece. “We pioneered the whole two-piece bat 20 years ago now,” Anderson says. “This was an overhaul of how the barrel attaches to the handle.”

Calling it ISO, for isolation, the new connection aims to remove vibration in the handle by using a new foam — the same style used by Adidas Boost footwear — injected into where the barrel meets the handle. With the lightweight nature of the foam, Easton can use 40 percent more foam to create a softer connection and more “solid, natural feel” without adding weight.

For the barrel, no longer was Easton aiming to simply make a bat longer. Instead, engineers reduced the length in their barrel for a more traditional-shaped bat to find the best swing weight. “We are optimizing the barrel shape to allow us to put the weight in the right spots to create the ideal balance point,” Anderson says. “We redid the whole barrel shape and the composite ply to optimize for a hotter bat.”

The ADV also includes new patent-pending Power Boost soft knob technology. Instead of a hard knob, Eason used hard rubber, similar to that of a racecar tire, then softened it to help with the feel of the bat.

“A lot of players get injured in the hands from the hard knob,” he says. “Why don’t we make the knob softer? We messed around with different rubbers so it was still hard, yet soft. Players are really digging it.” Along with the comfort, players can move their hands farther down the knob for more leverage.

Following the ADV, the Fuse offers an aluminum barrel with a forged carbon composite cap to help take weight out of the end for a faster-swinging bad. The stiff end cap allows for greater barrel trampoline. The Fuse includes a carbon core, reinforcing the aluminum alloy to create the “thinnest walls in the game to create a better-performing bat.” The Power Boost soft knob gets joined by a VRSCOR insert in the handle designed to remove vibration and create a solid feel.

The Alpha bat, at the lowest price point in the main Project 3 line, offers a more traditional aluminum bat, still with the carbon core in the barrel and VRSCOR.

As a final component, Easton added Lizard Skin grips to every bat. “They are on half of major leaguers right now,” Anderson says. “Everyone loves it, let’s do it.”

With the new Project 3 designs, Anderson says Easton has created a pro-balanced swing weight in the ADV, a faster swing in the Fuse and a power balance in the Alpha. Throughout it all, Easton has rebuilt its BBCOR lineup with Project 3.

Tim Newcomb covers gear and business for Baseball America. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.

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