Louisville Slugger announced a consumer return/replacement procedure for non-approved youth composite bats.
The statement from the bat maker follows:
Many parents, coaches and youth baseball players are confused and frustrated over the various actions related to composite bats taken by baseball's governing organizations for the 2011 season. We at Louisville SluggerÂ® TPXÂ® share in your frustration as our business and ability to introduce products to market has been adversely affected by these decisions. As recently as February 17, 2011, Little League Baseball Inc. made yet another change to its test protocol for bat compliance. All the while, Louisville Slugger TPX has exhausted its efforts to minimize the impact on our valuable and loyal customers.
Please understand that in our 127 years in baseball, Louisville Slugger TPX has never made and sold a product that is not in compliance with baseball governing organizations' regulations or performance standards. When our products go to market they are in compliance. Always have been. Always will be. That's the way we've done business since 1884.
Because of governing body decisions, some 2Â¼-inch composite barrel TPX bats that were compliant when they were sent into the marketplace no longer meet the rules of some organizations, while they are still legal for play in most others including Babe Ruth/Cal Ripken, Pony, Dixie Youth and USSSA. The attached chart details specifically which 2010 and 2011 models are still permitted by each respective organization. Simply stated, there is confusion because all youth baseball organizations are not in agreement over standards for composite bats.
While Louisville Slugger TPX firmly believes youth baseball organizations that have imposed immediate changes have done so with a significant lack of regard for their partners and constituents, it greatly values its vast number of loyal customers. As such, we are instituting the following process to rectify the situation for those customers who possess bats that are now considered non-approved for play as a result of the composite bat moratorium put in place December 30, 2010.
Verify your bat is considered non-approved for play in your respective league. (See attached chart for non-approved 2010 and 2011 Louisville Slugger model bats.)
If your bat is now considered non-approved, contact Louisville Slugger at (800) 282-2287 Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. EST to obtain a Return Authorization (RA) Number. Please have the following information available: model number, bat length, bat weight, proof of purchase and date of purchase. In order to be eligible for a replacement bat, customer must have RA number.
If bat was purchased between July 1, 2010, and February 21, 2011, from an authorized Louisville Slugger dealer and accompanies a valid proof of purchase:
Louisville Slugger will replace bat with a YB116 Omaha at no charge. Replacement bat will carry a one-time, one-year warranty effective the date it was shipped from Louisville Slugger.
Louisville Slugger will replace bat with a big barrel SL11EX2 Exogrid 2 or SL11H2 H2 for $100, plus applicable sales tax. Replacement bat will carry a one-time, one-year warranty effective the date it was shipped from Louisville Slugger.
If bat was purchased between January 1, 2010, and June 30, 2010, from an authorized Louisville Slugger dealer and accompanies a valid proof of purchase:
Louisville Slugger will replace bat with a YB116 Omaha for $50, plus applicable sales tax. Replacement bat will carry a one-time, one-year warranty effective the date it was shipped from Louisville Slugger.
Louisville Slugger will replace bat with a big barrel SL11EX2 Exogrid 2 or SL11H2 H2 for $100, plus applicable sales tax. Replacement bat will carry a one time, one year warranty effective the date it was shipped from Louisville Slugger.
ÂOriginal bat must have been purchased from an authorized Louisville Slugger dealer between January 1, 2010, and February 21, 2011, to be eligible for replacement.
Customer must have valid proof of purchase to be eligible for replacement. Valid proof of purchase includes either a copy of original receipt from Louisville Slugger Authorized Dealer or a copy of credit statement, bank statement or cancelled check.
Customer must contact Louisville Slugger Customer Service Department to receive an approved Return Authorization (RA) Number no later than April 15, 2011. Louisville Slugger must receive non-approved bat no later than May 1, 2011 to be eligible for replacement. Bats received after May 1, 2011, will be returned to customer without replacement.
All replacements requiring payment are subject to applicable sales tax determined by customer's respective local tax law.
All replacement bats will carry a one-year, one-time replacement warranty effective from the date the replacement bat was shipped.
Once Louisville Slugger is contacted and RA has been approved, customer is responsible for shipping bat, freight prepaid (paid by customer), to Louisville Slugger.
Replacement bat will be shipped ground freight prepaid (paid by Louisville Slugger) to customer within 5 business days of receipt of non-approved bat as inventory permits. If Louisville Slugger depletes YB116 Omaha inventory, customer will be shipped YB126 Omaha.