Closeout Bats: How Clearance Shopping Can Transform Your Game
You may be familiar with the term “Closeout Bats,” from the online sporting goods retailer by the same name. Fan favorites though they are, they do not hold a monopoly on shopping for the hottest gear at the not-so-hottest prices, and they certainly don’t hold a monopoly on clearance shopping as a general (and generally advisable) practice.
The thing about Closeout Bats the seller is that they take their name from a generic term for what the rest of us would call “clearance bats,” mating popular bats to other gear and passing along some savings to the customer.
At HB Sports, we have a few guiding principles, and though one of these is providing low prices for our customers, it is not the only one. We pride ourselves on providing free shipping, exclusive discounts and excellent customer service; we like to think we treat each of our customers as a part of one large family.
So, with that said, here’s a little gem for our readers, and use it wisely. Think of the term “closeout bats” more generally, and let it apply to the practice of clearance shopping. You might have been tempted to fall in line with the maxim to pay more and get more, since the more you spend, the higher quality you are supposed to get.
This is not always the case, and wise clearance shoppers know that there are instances in which it is expressly the opposite of the truth. Patience and vigilance - no small measure of each - will pay off in the long run for those who wait.
Here’s how (and why) you should be an opportunistic clearance shopper, and to learn to strike while the iron is hot.
Clearance Shopping and Its Inevitable Draw
If something is truly a closeout - bat or otherwise - then there’s a reason the seller is getting rid of it. Perhaps there is excess stock, or more likely, the manufacturer has discontinued it and the remaining products are simply taking up shelf space.
When either of these things happens, the retailer is tempted to slash prices in an attempt to get the product to move to make way for newer, potentially more desirable products. Consequently, clearance prices - closeout prices, that is - tend to be laughably low. In some cases, clearance prices make sale prices look like a joke.
Whatever the seller’s specific reasons are for dropping prices, they have the ability to pass on amazing savings to their customers. There are, however, a few caveats associated with this. One is that sometimes you cannot return the items once they’ve been purchased. It should also be noted that clearance is not repeatable; the items on clearance are often reduced to clearance until they are gone and not replaced.
This often places the onus of preparation and awareness on the buyer. You can’t simply wake up and decide you’re going to get a deal on a closeout bat on any given day. You need to be patient, put your time in, and stay alert for company developments. You really can never predict when gear like baseball and softball bats will be reduced to clear - and you don’t know how fast they’re going to sell out either.
The benefits are as clear as the first syllable of clearance. Being an opportunistic shopper will get you excellent prices on the best gear (even if it’s from last year) and with our excellent service and free standard shipping, you can save even more and potentially make off with a baseball bat that’s better suited to your needs.
Hopefully you don’t need more convincing that you should engage in clearance shopping, at least opportunistically. Here’s how you can score a deal on certain classes of gear, and some tips for success.
Closeout Bat Deals: How to Get a Bargain
If you’re looking for a deal on closeout bats, the trick is to be prepared. You see, you can’t visit a shop and “search” for a bat for sale from your preferred manufacturer, with the specific certifications that you need, or even balanced as you choose. You need to keep your eyes open, be diligent, and pay attention every day.
One way to do this is to stay in close touch with your preferred sellers. For our part, you can follow our social media accounts, Pinterest, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram. They’ll increase your likelihood of getting a notification when anything is going, going, gone. Follow our accounts and make sure you pay attention to updates and developments that will tip you off to a closeout, a sale, or a clearance deal.
You should also come up with a list of your favorite sellers, and periodically check their websites for deals and clearance sales. While following social media accounts and joining newsletters is beneficial, it is you that need to take the initiative to find deals so that you can be ahead of them. If you stumble upon a clearance deal before anyone else finds it, the spoils are yours.
Now, a note on being prepared. A baseball bat is not a perishable good, and though some young players will have changing needs through the seasons, adult players’ preferences probably won’t vary much from season to season. If you play in a league that permits it and you prefer a composite bat with a huge trampoline effect and -8 weight drop, that’s probably what you’re going to swing next season and the season after that.
If you can get a serious deal on a DeMarini with just those specifics, and some extras on top of it, what do you care if you don’t “open the packaging” until next season? You’re going to pay extra when you buy something as the need arises. If you buy before you need something - especially if you know it’s something you’re eventually going to need - that’s the way to save money. Anticipate the need and buy ahead of time. That’s the big trick, and it’s as applicable to closeout bats as it is to any other piece of gear and equipment.
Here’s something else about clearance. One of the reasons closeout bats are closeouts it's because they’re getting “closed out,” and discontinued. If you’ve found a model of a bat that just feels right in your hands, and you notice that it’s getting discontinued and going on clearance, you’d better buy it up. Get one, or two, or more - they won’t go bad, and once the clearance goes, you might never have a chance
You might be able to swing the same alloy bat for years and years, but we all know that wood and composite bats can crack in response to mishits and adverse conditions. Don’t gamble with your favorite bat if you only have one.
Gloves and Mitts
Baseball bats aren’t the only items that go on clearance. Basically, every other piece of gear can be discontinued or cleared as well. Consider the baseball and softball gloves and mitts you use when you’re on the other side of the plate.
Baseball and softball gloves are, for all intents and purposes, like items of clothing. One single mitt or glove will fit no two individual players alike. Furthermore, a fielding glove provides a highly personalized experience and one that shifts over time.
You already know that mitts and gloves must be broken in, and they form to your hand more and more over time. This provides a highly subjective experience, and one that cannot be duplicated with the purchase of a different glove, even one that comes from the same manufacturer and promises to deliver on similar features.
That makes a specific glove in your size a one-of-a-kind thing, like a bat but even more personal. Waiting for clearance deals on baseball and softball gloves and mitts can give you an opportunity to replace your current glove with a reserve or a few reserves of the same model. That way, when you do inevitably wear out your current glove, you’ll have something just as good lined up to replace it.
There’s something else: clearance is a great way to try new gear at a fantastically reduced price. It’s no secret that high-quality, full-grain leather and super-synthetic gloves are big-ticket items that command hefty sticker prices. If you want to try out something new but don’t want to pay the full price, hawk the clearance deals.
Cleats and Turf Shoes
Let’s take a close look at footwear. Footwear, like cleats and turf shoes, will keep you dry and cool during a game, supporting you while providing the best possible traction, given the surface on which you are playing.
While there are advancements in technology every year, and companies like New Balance are increasingly coming up with newer insoles, footbeds and materials for supposedly enhanced comfort and support, it can be hard to improve on a good thing.
If you currently have a pair of cleats or turf shoes that you love, here’s an unfortunate fact. The harder you play in them, and the longer you own them, the more quickly they’re going to wear out. A good pair of shoes might have a couple of seasons of life in it, but eventually, they will need to be replaced.
You may be able to save yourself a significant chunk of money just by making a commitment to shopping clearance deals wherever you can find them. You can’t be selective or picky with clearance, so you’ll need to be highly attentive. You need a specific size of shoe and buying as soon as you notice the deal will save you money and give you the ability to put a pair of your favorite cleats or turf shoes in the closet in reserve.
Keep your eyes open, buy ahead, and save money - you’ll be glad you did in the long run.
Peripheral Accessories: Spend Less, Get More
In addition, clearance shopping is a viable option for securing deals on gear bags, sunglasses, hats, baseballs and softballs, and other accessories. The good news about these types of accessories is that you can often predict the need before it occurs, and won’t have to buy something new at a moment’s notice.
For example, if you know that by next season, or in two seasons, you’re going to need a new gear bag, simply set the goal today to watch the clearance sales and you can get last year's hottest gear bag at the end of this year for a song. You’ll have a brand new gear bag waiting for you when your current one peters out, and you’ll have secured it for pennies on the dollar.
Take the same approach to shopping for sunglasses, hats, and baseball, and softballs and you will definitely not regret it. Every year, both players and teams beat the lights out of hundreds if not thousands of softballs and baseballs. You need quality, but you don’t want to have to pay top dollar for it. A baseball that has sat in a warehouse for a year (but been unused) is not a jot less useful for one that’s fresh off production.
Buy on clearance and have what you need ready, when you need it, instead of having to make last-minute, impulsive purchases that will cost you extra and deliver the same amount of value. What can we say - other than that with conscientious clearance shopping, you really do spend less and get more for it.
Summarizing the Advantages of the Hunt for Closeout Bats
In a nutshell, when you shop for closeout bats and other gear, you spend less money, get more value for your dollars, and can keep reserves of what you need ready when you need them. In that respect, you’ll be better prepared as a player as well.
In addition to following us on our social media accounts, we’d encourage you to check back on our website where you can periodically check our clearance deals. If you have any questions about our gear or equipment, please give us a call at 1-800-540-BATS and we’d be more than happy to assist - remember, all orders get free standard shipping, so you’ll save even more on clearance.
- Blog Admin