When Nashville’s Jeremy Mitchell started his company, the longtime baseball fan hoped to hit a homerun with his heritage-inspired, hand-painted baseball bats. He has.
The artist: The Tennessee native grew up in Hendersonville and studied sports marketing at Western Kentucky University. After college, Mitchell worked in advertising for 10 years before starting his company in Nashville, where he works and lives with his wife, three daughters and Lucy, a Boston terrier.
The company: Nashville-based Mitchell Bat Co., started in 2013, during Game 6 of the World Series. Mitchell paints the bats himself (which he finds relaxing) at his house, but has a bat guy (Batman) make them.
In the beginning: After working on a skateboard company branding and web project in the summer of 2013, Mitchell decided he needed to create something without sitting behind a computer.
He started drawing baseball bats with various stripes on them and posted the drawings to his personal Instagram feed. He started getting emails from strangers asking if they could buy a bat.
The goods & materials: Mostly maple, hand-painted baseball bats, including custom logo bats ($345), traditional bats ($245) and mini-bats ($95 with classic stripes or $145 for custom).
Hot bats: MLBPA (Major League Baseball Players Association) bats ($245).
Inspiration: Many including:
– Success stories like those of Jessie Itzler and Aaron Draplin.
– 1900’s baseball. Also, 1950’s baseball (Mickey Mantle, Jackie Robinson).
– Anything hand made, like leather wallets or bags and companies, including Loyal Stricklin (TN) and Odin Leather Goods (TX).
Fun or unusual requests: Created a bat for the cereal Fruity Pebbles. The request was for the bat to say, “Yaba Daba Doo.”
Big break (s):
- ESPN was the first. Two weeks after Mitchell started his company, ESPN asked if it could feature his bats in its 2013 Holiday Gift Guide.
- Being invited to sell Mitchell bats in Ralph Lauren’s flagship Polo store in New York.
- In 2018, painted the bats for the Home Run Derby. This was a collaboration with Louisville Slugger.
- Recently, a bat project for Nike for the Boston Red Sox.
What’s new: Hockey sticks ($150).
Where to buy: mitchellbatco.com
Get social at: mitchellbatco on facebook, Instagram, and even TikTok.