Getting to Know You – Yaya Baseball

In case you’ve missed it, we’ve teamed up with awesome Slovakian bat manufacturers Yaya Baseball to offer one lucky Bat Flips & Nerds reader or follower the chance to win one of their incredible custom made bats worth €119. At that price point they’re an absolute steal – and good enough for ex MLB affiliated players and a current ABL star.

Now, you probably got as far as ‘Slovakian bat manufacturer’ before raising an eyebrow, so we decided to ask the guys at Yaya to tell us a bit more about their origins and their awesome product. If you weren’t going to enter the competition beforehand, you definitely will after this. Over to Tony and the team…

You’re based in Slovakia. Is there a big baseball culture in the country?

Unfortunately, the culture of baseball in Slovakia is not as prevalent as other countries in Western Europe and even our neighbors, Czech Republic, but the clubs here are trying their best to grow the game here. The two top teams in Slovakia, Apollo Bratislava and Angels Trnava compete in the Euro Interleague Baseball, a league comprised of teams from Hungary, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, and Slovakia. The rest of the teams in the country compete among themselves in the Slovak Extraleague.

What inspired you to set up the company?

The company’s founder, American Andy Weissman , ventured into this project motivated by a wish to find a self funding independent vehicle for preserving and building baseball in Eastern Europe for any child regardless of economic standing. He searched for weeks in the forest to find a new and better, more durable, powerful wood to bring to players all around the world. He found it – and that’s why we make awesome quality bats at a fraction of the price of our American competitors.

And why focus on custom made bats?

We give the customer the option to customize because we realize that everyone has their own sense of style and preference. When a player is able to feel like he’s created his or her own bat, they are able to take more pride in it and have more confidence knowing that this piece of equipment was specifically designed with them in mind. Although the quality of the wood and our commitment to excellence throughout the process of making these bats can stand alone, the option of customization is a unique feature that sets us apart.

What differentiates this bat from others available in the market?

Quite frankly, it’s our process. Euro Beech wood isn’t as accessible to companies in the U.S. as it is to us. This wood has been proven to be just as pliable as ash wood and just as dense and durable as maple. We only use the highest quality billets for our bats and each one is handcrafted by guys who have perfected our precise process. Another core competency we have is of course the customizing option. We give creative liberty to the customer not only in color scheme, but also structure. You are able to choose from a variety of knobs, handles, barrels, cups, and even weight distribution.

There are a lot of testimonials on the website, who uses your bats and what do they like about them?

We have customers all around the world. Most of our sales are in Europe, but we have customers in Australia, Asia, and North America. We sponsor several elite clubs around Europe such as Hamburg Stealers and VSK Technika Brno and even top European players including  the Czech Republic’s ex Reds and Twins prospects, Petr Cech and Matej Hejma, and Mitch Nilsson, who’s currently starring for the Brisbane Bandits in the ABL. We have developed a strong and loyal base of customers and we’ve been truly grateful for their support and we are still striving to continue to grow and become a more prominent fixture in the global marketplace.

For those of you wondering how you get your hands on a Yaya bat, you have two options:

  1. Head to Yaya’s site and start picking out the colours, weight and trimmings for your own custom bat. (They’re currently running an offer for a free practice bat with every custom bat!)
  2. Enter our Yaya competition by retweeting and liking the tweet right below. Make sure you’re following us and Yaya too!

 

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