Step Up to the Plate with Mitchell Bat Company
A Nashville web designer and filmmaker takes his love for baseball a step further by selling painted bats and helping expand baseball programs for underserved youth.
Written By: Taylor Pittman
As the Boston Red Sox took on the St. Louis Cardinals in game six of the 2013 World Series, Jeremy Mitchell’s patience ran out. Mitchell planned on painting and selling baseball bats and already had a few designs completed. While a new job and baby originally put his plans on hold until after Christmas, watching the World Series sparked Mitchell’s excitement. He began posting his designs on Instagram and interacting with fans at Fenway Park through likes and comments. Mitchell Bat Company had officially begun.
Four days after launch, Mitchell sold two bats. He sold a bat to a customer in Hawaii the next day. It wasn’t long before customers started sending in requests for certain designs and colors. Mitchell continued receiving orders every day before he even figured out how to paint and ship the bats. “We had to quickly learn how to run a business,” he says.
Now Mitchell’s products have been featured on popular sites like Cool Material as well as ESPN’s 2013 Holiday Gift Guide. He has shipped handcrafted bats as far as London and Australia and loves hearing from his customers. One memorable customer in Houston sent Mitchell a picture of her son’s Little League team celebrating around a trophy as the coach held up a Mitchell Bat Company bat. Mitchell admits he became teary eyed knowing the impact his bats have on people. “They mean something to them,” he says. “They’re special to them.”
From the beginning, Mitchell knew he wanted his bats to support something more than just a business. His motivation stemmed from his past work with Salemtown Board Company, a skateboard business in Germantown whose staff hires and mentors urban youth. He decided to combine Salemtown’s mission with his love for baseball and teamed up with Major League Baseball’s RBI program. Now a portion of proceeds from Mitchell Bat Company helps provide baseball leagues and games to underserved youth.
“I know how important baseball was to me growing up,” Mitchell says. “I would hate for a kid not to be able to do that.”
The future of Mitchell Bat Company consists of expanding the bat collection with more colors and more designs. Mitchell says customers can also look out for other products aside from the bats, baseballs, and pennants already in his online store. Most importantly, he plans on sharing his love for baseball with more people. “I want to be out there with people and with baseball fans and interact with them more."
Mitchell Bat Co., 110 29th Avenue N, Suite 100, Nashville, TN 37203; mitchellbatco.com