top of page

How to Grip a Baseball Bat

We have all been taught to align our door knocking knuckles when we grip a baseball bat, but is that what hitters actually do?

Today we will take a look at some of the best hitters ever and pay close attention to how they actually grip the baseball bat.

Some hitters hold their elbow up which can change the dynamic of how the hands grip the baseball bat.

The three main types of grips the hitters use to get the baseball bat.

  1. Door knocking Knuckles aligned

  2. Ax grip

  3. Wrapped


When looking at how to grip a baseball bat you must also look at the shape of the arms, wrists and the position of the elbows in relation to the baseball bat.

The majority of great hitters create a triangle shape with their arms when they grip the bat.

This means that they will hold their elbow up or back. This elbow position creates more torque, allows for better swing direction and more power to the opposite field.

Some hitters grab the bat with their wrists straight and other hitters grab the bat with their wrists flexed.

When looking at how the great hitters grip the baseball bat we must take notice of where they hold the barrel as they prepare to swing the bat.

Door knocking knuckles- This is universally taught in Little League.

Ax grip- This is what you will see in the majority of world class headers.

Wrapped- There have been several great hitters to use a wrap grip on the bat.


Find a grip that's comfortable for you.

One thing that most coaches can agree on is that the bat should be held in the fingers where grip strength is the best.

We do not want to hold that in the palm of a hand.

Some coaches will talk about gripping the bat loosely to allow for quickness and flexibility throughout the swing

The average home run in the major leagues is hit 100 miles per hour. In order to swing the bat fast enough to hit the ball 100 miles per hour, the grip cannot stay loose throughout the swing.

Ideally, the grip will be loose as we set up and then strong as you go to actually swing the bat.

The grip must be strong to consistently control the barrel and hit the ball Square.


Barry Bonds was the best home run hitter ever he choked up on the bat to give himself better control of the barrel. Many people believe that he swung a 32-inch bat, this is not true, he swung a 34-inch 31.9 ounce Sam Bat.

Choking up is very commonly taught as a two-strike approach to hitting. This technique can also be used in all hitting situations.

Grip tape

Grip tape is more commonly seen on aluminum bats rather than wood. This is because wood bats break more easily.

Some hitters like the feel of using grip tape. You can use regular athletic tape or you can use lizard skin grip tape.

Pine tar

The majority of hitters in the major leagues use pine tar to get a better grip on the baseball bat. They want to trust that they can take a hard swing without the bat flying out of their hands.

Pine tar can be applied to a spray or pine tar stick.

Batting gloves

The majority of major league hitters use batting gloves to protect their hands from the constant abuse.

Recently, batting gloves have been designed with more tact to them reducing the need for pine tar.

It is not uncommon to see catchers grip the bat without batting gloves, the gloves act as extra equipment to deal with as a catcher.

Share this article with everyone you know


Check out the Complete Swing Mechanics Video Guide



bottom of page