MLB's Next Crackdown May Be Maple Bats

Harder wood splits easily, sending shrapnel into stands
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 3, 2008 3:10 PM CDT
Washington Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman ducks from a broken bat from Florida Marlins' Hanley Ramirez during the seventh inning of a baseball game, Sept. 5, 2007, in Washington.   (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
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(Newser) – Barry Bonds may soon be the face of another Major League Baseball investigation: into the dangers of maple bats. The slugger's choice of wood has a growing following among players, but incidents of flying shards injuring fans and coaches have sparked a movement to ban the bats, USA Today reports. A safety summit on June 24 will take up the issue.

"A bat could easily snap and go right toward the pitcher, and he's not paying attention because he's looking at the ball, and it jams into his stomach," says Oakland pitcher Chad Gaudin. "I'm sure if that happened, God forbid, they would ban them."