|Industry||Baseball, Manufacturing, Sports equipment, Sporting goods|
|Founded 📆||June 1, 2016|
|Founder 👔||Gary Malec, Mark Malec, Cody Silveria, Lars Anderson|
|Headquarters 🏙️||Redwood City, California|
Area served 🗺️
|Gary Malec, Mark Malec, Cody Silveria, Lars Anderson, Ryan Kalish|
|Owner||Gary Malec, Mark Malec, Lars Anderson, Ryan Kalish|
Number of employees
Birdman Bats is a privately owned American sporting goods manufacturing company located in Redwood City. California.
Birdman Bats is one of 35 licensed baseball bat suppliers for Major League Baseball (MLB) and Minor League Baseball (MiLB) players. It is also a bat supplier for baseball leagues throughout the world, including Australia, China, Japan, and Korea.
In addition, it also makes baseballs, bottle openers, hats, hoodies, keychains, raglans, snapback hats, stickers, t-shirts, softball bats, and whiskey glasses.
Background and history
Brothers Gary and Mark Malec grew up playing baseball in Wildwood Crest, New Jersey and later moved to San Francisco, California; Gary moved there in 2010 and Mark followed in 2013. In May 2011, they started their boutique baseball bat company in their backyard and opened a warehouse in South San Francisco, California. They turned the garage of the warehouse into a workshop and made bats for themselves using power tools.
Gary Malec produced the first bat on his hand-wired lathe in 2011 for Mark, who was playing college baseball and struggling at the plate. Months earlier, Mark drew a cartoonish half-man, half-bird sketch in an art class. Gary found the doodle, made it into a sticker and put on the first Birdman bat. That drawing sparked the company name, Birdman Bats. The logo is meant to serve as a reminder to play baseball like a kid for the love of the game.
Gary Malec met Lars Anderson two years before meeting his Boston Red Sox teammate Ryan Kalish. Kalish invested in the company in 2018. Anderson was minor league teammates with Manny Ramirez and Birdman Bats landed Ramirez as their first MLB client after introduction by Anderson. Birdman Bats and Malec traveled with Ramirez when he played in Japan.
Birdman Bats was approved by the World Baseball Softball Confederation in 2016 which allowed the bats to be used in the European Baseball Championship, the Olympic Games, the World Baseball Classic, and professional leagues in Japan and Korea. In addition, Birdman Bats is also licensed in the Chinese Professional Baseball League, the Confederation of European Baseball, and the Australian Baseball League. The first Birdman bat was used in a Spring training game by 2015 World Series Champion Terrance Gore.
Shortly thereafter, Birdman Bats were used by prominent MLB players including Hunter Pence, Yasiel Puig, Kris Bryant, Todd Frazier and Alex Blandino.
Yasiel Puig was the first to use a Birdman bat in a Major League regular season game, as well as postseason in 2018. His five home runs in a 24-hour span tied a Major League Record record for the most home runs in two consecutive games. The first Birdman bat used in a Major League postseason game was also by Puig on October 4 at Dodger Stadium in Game 1 of the 2018 National League Division Series, where the Dodgers defeated the Atlanta Braves 6-0. The first Birdman bat used in a World Series game was by Puig on October 24 at Fenway Park in Game 2 of the 2018 World Series, where in the fourth inning Puig singled off of David Price to drive in Manny Machado with the go-ahead run.
Manufacturing and production
Gary Malec originally carved bats by hand, which take upwards of an hour. He then bought a makeshift lathe off Craigslist in 2010. This was until he launched and secured funding through a Kickstarter campaign in 2016. The funds were used to purchase a computer operated lathe that makes bats, a laser engraver, and a healthy stack of wood.
MLB players who use Birdman Bats
- Zach McKinstry
- Austin Slater
- Pablo Sandoval
- Jorge Alfaro
- Albert Almora
- Jake Arrieta
- Greg Bird
- Alex Blandino
- Willie Calhoun
- Brandon Dixon
- Kyle Farmer
- Maikel Franco
- Kyle Hendricks
- Rich Hill
- Cole Irvin
- Drew Jackson
- Mike Leake
- Gerardo Parra
- Hunter Pence
- Chad Pinder
- Yasiel Puig
- Edwin Ríos
- René Rivera
- Tyson Ross
- Ross Stripling
- Bradley Zimmer
Former MLB players
- John Baker
- Chase d'Arnaud
- Brandon Dickson
- Tim Dillard
- Pedro Guerrero
- Ryan Kalish
- Jeff Keppinger
- Alex Mejia
- Melvin Mercedes
- Will Middlebrooks
- Manny Ramirez
- Madison Younginer
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- List of baseball bat manufacturers
- "SJ Magazine: Swinging For the Fences". SJ Magazine. 2016-09-22. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- "Birdman Bats is hitting home run with baseball players: Hillary Vaughn". Fox Business. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- Anderson, Lars E. "Lars Anderson: I have retired from baseball. Now what do I do?". The Athletic. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- "Hoornstra: For two former major leaguers, retiring at age 30 beckoned in different ways". Orange County Register. 2019-01-31. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- Orlando, Alex. "Local baseball bat maker swings for fences". Half Moon Bay Review. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- "Peninsula Baseball Bat Maker Gets a Shot in 'The Show'". NBC Bay Area. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- Jenkins, Bruce (2018-12-31). "Birdman's wooden bats, crafted by Bay Area team, have major-league appeal". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- Orlando, Alex (2018-08-16). "How Birdman Bats went from a Half Moon Bay garage all the way to Major League Baseball". Medium. Retrieved 2021-05-03.[unreliable source?]
- "Birdman Bats Take Flight In San Francisco". 2017-02-27. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- "South Jersey natives swinging for the fences with boutique bat company". WHYY. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- "Birdman Bats". Kickstarter. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
Category:American companies established in 2016 Category:Baseball bats Category:Companies based in Redwood City, California Category:Company stubs Category:Manufacturing companies established in 2016 Category:Redwood City, California Category:Sporting goods brands Category:Sporting goods manufacturers of the United States Category:Sports equipment makers Category:Sportswear brands Category:United States manufacturing company stubs
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