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Higher bat speed, and the resulting ball speed off an aluminum bat gave a Little Leaguer insufficient time to react, and the boy suffered cardiac arrest when hit by a batted ball during a game, the boy's family claims in lawsuits against Hillerich & Bradsby dba Louisville Slugger, and the Little League.

Aluminum bats have been controversial for precisely this reason, and because some baseball purists say the lighter bats give batters an unfair edge. In this case, the Domalewski family claims Steven, 12, was injured and hospitalized during a June 6, 2006 game in Wayne, N.J., from a ball bit by a Louisville Slugger TPX Platinum bat. The 31-inch bat weighs 19 ozs., the complaint states. Traditional wooden bats generally weight 30 ozs. or more.

As a result of the blow to his chest, Steven "went into cardiac arrest ... was resuscitated and transported to St. Joseph's Medical Center in Paterson," according to the claim in Passaic County Court. It claims Steven "suffered from anoxic encephalopathy secondary to comotio cordis" and "is multiple handicapped."

The Domalewskis accuse the defendants, among other things, with consumer fraud: minimizing the dangers of aluminum bats, though knowing of them. They demand punitive damages.


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