Miken Ultra II Velocit-E softball bat, $40.

Most people do not associate metal baseball or softball bats with money, and for good reason - most of them aren't even worth bothering with. But... some of the bats often found hiding out there among the duds are the high-dollar brands that cost hundreds new and bring hundreds used. The two brands I can think of right now are DeMarini and the bat in our particular example here - Miken. Learning more about the expensive softball bats you're likely to run across will pay off handsomely!

It always pays to dig around! At the yard sale, this little Miken Ultra II Velocit-E bat was inside its bat bag, which was under a big pile of jackets. When I took the bat out of the bag, I was immediately impressed by how darned expensive it looked!

I thought I was in for a killer deal, but then the seller started in with the usual - how her husband had paid over $200 for just the bat... and how if nobody was willing to pay his $40 asking price, he was going to stick it back in the hall closet.... I was ready to stash it back under the jackets, but I kept repeating my mantra that half of a deal is better than no deal.

Using the Auctionbandits Centerpiece technique, I removed my attention from the bat and figured that the gloves and bag would likely sell on eBay for at least what the seller was demanding for the whole lot, which would mean that the bat would be the gravy. And it looked like a lot of gravy to me, so I decided to take a chance and pay up. But first, I made sure to inspect the bat carefully to make sure it had no dents or cracks, and that it didn't rattle or make any weird sounds - which composite bats are known to do when they're broken or ceacked - when I whacked it firmly on a car tire. Everything was okay, so the next step was to list it and wait.

When I got home that afternoon, I did a little research and discovered that some of these composite bats are really expensive, costing well over $350 in some cases. And when I think about all the bats I've passed over at yard sales and auctions, I have to wonder if I blindly passed over any Miken bats. Here's what the Miken folks say about this bat:

"Due to its E-flex Ultra II Technology there has NEVER been a bat that combines performance, durability and sweet spot like the Ultra II. So no matter where you hit on the barrel, it's BOMBS AWAY. Players are saying that this bat has the biggest SWEETSPOT on the market. We are positive that you have never hit a bat that is more forgiving and has more pop. Miken is the only company using this technology - there is no comparison. Features: Exclusive E-Flex Ultra Technology, Carbon-X Shell Technology, 100 Composite Construction, 13/16 Handle, 13.5 Barrel, Ultra Bond Grip- Basketball Material for Maximum Grip, BPF 1.20."

This Miken Ultra II softball bat and accessories sold on eBay for $215.

Photo of Miken Ultra II Velocit-E softball bat