South Hills family brings lumber to life for sluggers in 20 states
It's Aul good in this South Hills garage.
Springtime. Baseball returns. Orders arrive for custom lumber.
When Joe Aul, 24, graduated from St. Vincent College two years ago, “I combined my passion of playing baseball and making things. It was a natural fit.”
The family, working in this garage, has turned out bats for the better part of a decade since his father, Jack, started making them as a hobby. Joe Aul played baseball in college, using family-made lumber.
The oldest of eight home-schooled children, Aul took the business to the next level, forming Aul Bat Co.
As the only Pittsburgh-area bat maker, Aul produces about 500 bats a year. He hopes to quadruple that number and expand beyond the 20 states to which Aul ships. Customers include professional players, though no major leaguers yet; those in the minors; the Winter League; American Legion; and several colleges.
“I think with the Pirates back on track, it is good for business,” Aul said.
He eyed a freshly sanded bat and smiled. “The end result is a pretty bat, that is for sure.”
Phil Pavely is a Trib Total Media photographer. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.