By Bob Behre
When Bryce Harper, Mookie Betts and George Springer are using your bats, it’s fairly safe to say, your product has turned some heads.
Victus Sports co-founders Ryan Engroff and Jared Smith believed the wood bat market was “stale” and felt they could make a difference in a sport they loved. So, working out of a shop in a garage in tiny Blackwood, N.J., they went to work.
“It was very humble beginnings,” said Smith, Victus Sports’ CEO. “We were technically living at the shop and showering at the gym for a period of time after we got started in 2012.”
Harper, Betts, Springer and many other major leaguers are now hitting home runs and ripping lined drives all over MLB stadiums with their Victus bats. In fact, 21 percent of current major league hitters are ripping away with Victus bats.
“We really had nothing more than a big attitude and a bigger love for the game,” said Smith. “We’ve grown into one of the most elite wood bat manufacturers at every level of the sport.”
That’s right, Victus bats are not just for major leaguers. The bats are designed for use for players at every level. Victus uses design driven craftsmanship and an unprecedented commitment to adaptable performance-based quality.
“We embrace the evolution of the game,” says Smith, “and salute the next generation of players who are changing it. Victus believed we would be able to bring in new technology and style to set ourselves apart from the competition.”
As Victus Sports grew from that garage in Blackwood, just 15 miles from Philadelphia, its team began collecting victories.
“We had a few major highlights the past few years, including the MLB Home Run Derby champ (Harper), the AL MVP (Betts) and a World Series star (Springer) using our bats,” said Smith.
“But first and foremost, we love that we are able to deliver the highest quality bat in baseball to both our amateur and professional players,” says Smith. “We’ve been able to make all of this happen by coming into the shop every day with the goal of making the best products.”
This makes the partnership between Victus Sports and Diamond Nation a natural as each organization demands high quality performance in their day-to-day operation. The four-year deal between the two baseball titans will showcase Victus with plenty of signage around the Diamond Nation facility, provide access to Diamond Nation players and fans and present the first Victus Wood Bat Tournament series -- 10 tournaments in all -- at the Flemington site this summer.
“We are excited to announce the partnership with Victus and help the company further expand into the amateur market,” said Diamond Nation General Manager Nick Massari. “The thing that struck us most about Victus is not only its appreciation for putting the best product on the field, but also its creative and forward-thinking nature. It’s a perfect marriage and we cannot wait to offer the best wood in baseball to some of the best young ball players in the country.”
Victus Sports certainly enters the partnership with a head of steam in the industry.
“Diamond Nation is a high class organization run by some of the best guys in the baseball industry,” said Smith. “Their facilities are second to none and they have a reputation for deftly coordinating tournaments and teams with densely talented player pools. Victus makes high performance products specifically for players looking to take their game to the next level. We want to be around players, coaches and people who live for the game. Diamond Nation offers exactly that.”
Visit Victus Sports' website (https://victussports.com) and shop for Pro Reserve, Axe Bat, Grit Matte, Custom and Training bats. The company also provides batting accessories and baseball apparel.
“We are looking to expand our product line,” says Smith, “while maintaining our focus on quality, performance and design.”