Baetslé is a member of the Flora family, one of the largest groups of rather bright and stony asteroids, and orbits the Sun in the inner main-belt at a distance of 1.9–2.7 AU once every 3 years and 6 months (1,262 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.18 and an inclination of 3° with respect to the ecliptic. Its orbit is almost coplanar. Its first used observation dates back to 1943, when it was identified as 1943 RA at Heidelberg Observatory, extending the body's observation arc by 7 years prior to its official discovery observation.
Baetslé takes 6.08 hours for a full a rotation around its axis.[a] Two observations by the Infrared Astronomical Satellite, IRAS, showed an absolute magnitude of 13.40 and a low geometric albedo of 0.03. While the size, rotational period and orbital data are commonly found among main-belt asteroids, the albedo was exceptionally low and suggested that the body's composition could be mostly carbonaceous.
However, subsequent observations by the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer's NEOWISE mission gave a higher albedo of 0.22 and 0.30 and the Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link derives a value of 0.33, assuming the body to be of a stony rather than of a carbonaceous composition. This also concurs with the fact that Baetslé is a member of the Flora family of rather bright and stony asteroids.
This minor planet was named in memory of Belgian astronomer Paul-Louis Baetslé (1909–1983), professor at the Brussels Royal Military School and a friend of Sylvain Arend. The official naming citation was published on 20 December 1983 (M.P.C. 8404).