Pat Shingleton: "Bees in the Bat!"
Before the initiation of metal baseball bats, the Hellerich and Bradsby "Louisville Slugger" was the bat of choice for the Big Leagues and the Little Leagues. Yesterday's column noted the difficulties in starting the baseball season in snow and nippy temperatures. Batting gloves "weren't around" in those days and nothing could prevent the "sting" when the ball connected to the bat on a super cold day. Some would refer to these occurrences as "bees in the bats." Due to the price of wooden bats, coaches would insist that the bat label be "in your face" when gripping it. Hitting the ball on the label broke the bat and resulted in 10 laps around the field. However, a cracked bat could be repaired with nail-brads and a layer of black tape.