Best Baseball Bats For Sale 2017: Buying Tips And Reviews
Since they were first used in the 1970s, aluminum and subsequently, composite and alloy baseball bats have changed the landscape of baseball from Little League all the way to the college level. What was once only described as the “crack” of the bat has evolved throughout the years in favor of a more metallic, unmistakable “ping,” usually followed by the cheers (or groans) of the crowd. Durable, attractive and designed for the long ball, metal bat technology has advanced significantly since its inception, and there are innumerable baseball bats for sale in the market today. This leaves consumers with many options to make one important choice: which bat to buy. Obviously, the best baseball bat out there, right? But that can be quite subjective and a tough choice; there are a lot of minor similarities and differences that can make or break a bat-buying decision. So as we flip our calendars to the 2017 season, turn on the lights, mow the grass and chalk the foul lines, what model baseball bat should we have in our hands as we stride to the plate? Let’s find out.
Some Useful Tips To Choose The Right Baseball Bat
Understanding the regulation of your league well
Before conducting baseball bat reviews and honing in on a certain model, it’s very important to understand what exactly to be looking for. Firstly, it’s important to know the rules of the league you’re playing in and what bats are or are not allowed. Traditionally, this is more regulated in the high school and college level, but it’s always best to make sure you do the research and buy a bat that your league allows.
Choosing the proper length and weight
Bats are usually graded by a bat’s “drop weight,” which is simply the difference in the length of the bat in inches and the bat’s weight in ounces. For example, a 10 year old might swing a 28 inch, 17 ounce bat. This would be considered a “minus eleven” or “drop eleven” bat. A typical high school player would swing something along the lines of a 33 inch, 30 ounce bat. This is referred to as a “minus-three” or a “drop three.”
Choosing the correct length and weight for a bat while extremely important is also subjective. When choosing the bat length, there is no official height-to-length guideline that works perfectly for everyone. There are certain guidelines that may help, but ultimately whoever is swinging the bat needs to be comfortable doing so. As a general rule and a starting point, if you stand with the bat on the ground at your side and with a straight arm you can lay your palm flat on the bottom of the handle, the bat is close to the right length.
Determining the weight of the bat is even more subjective, but equally important, if not more so. Traditional thought says that the bat’s weight should align with the weight of the player, especially at younger ages, but the ability to swing heavier bats really has more to do with the player’s strength than simply his or her weight. Again, there are certain guidelines that can help. The older a player gets, the better he or she will be able to swing bats that are more proportionally heavier. For example, a 9 year old player is more likely to be comfortable in the drop ten range, while an 18 year old would probably swing a minus 3 comfortably and would look at drop 3 baseball bats for sale as a result.
It is easy to find charts and diagrams both online and in retail stores outlining what length and weight bats should go with players of certain heights and weights. It’s recommended to use these diagrams to find a good starting point, but understand that every player is different and may be more comfortable swinging bats of different dimensions. A good way to determine bat size is to follow the palm test outlined above to get a good idea what length bat the player needs, and then have them swing different weighted bats (in a swing-safe area). The heaviest bat they can swing comfortably, with the bat following the correct bat-path, is probably the correct size bat. It’s very important to note that if they struggle to swing the bat at all, it’s probably too heavy.
Choosing the right material
Choosing the right material for baseball bats is also an important decision. While wood bats are typically reserved for use in professional baseball, some leagues do play with wood bats and many high school and college teams use wood bats in practice. When choosing different types of metal bats, you’re usually presented with three options: composite, alloy, or “hybrid,” which is a combination of the two.
Composite bats are generally considered to be of nicer quality, but are also generally more expensive. Composite bats traditionally have a larger “sweet spot,” the part of the barrel that hits the ball the hardest. They have minimal vibration, and sound a bit more like wood when hitting the ball. While more expensive, but are generally considered to be the best option in terms of quality.
Alloy bats are less expensive and constructed differently. The sweet spots on Alloy bats are often smaller than their Composite counterparts. They can vibrate a bit more when the ball is hit off the end of the bat or the barrel, and their sound is more of the traditional “ping.” A plus for Alloy bats is that they are ready to be used immediately, while some composite bats need to be broken in. Alloy bats are better for your budget, still perform well and are very durable.
Hybrid bats are exactly what they sound like. Made from a combination of composite and alloy materials, they have a medium-sized sweet spot, minimal vibration, and retain the ping sound. Hybrid bats are also typically priced somewhere between composite and alloy bat prices.
A lot goes into choosing the right bat, but the bottom line is that it’s worth taking the time to do the proper research, because the most important thing is that the player needs to be comfortable swinging it. Now that we have a better picture of what we need to be looking for when buying different kinds of bats, let’s take a look at some of the models available today.
Top 5 Best Baseball Bats Reviews For 2017
- Classic design
- Natural finish
- Very Durable
- Respected brand and model
- Made of performance-grade Ash
- Large barrel, solid wood
- Drop one weight
- Inherent risk of breaking wood bat
This Louisville Slugger wood bat for sale is put in production by one of the most respected brands in baseball, and is among the best wood baseball bats for sale. While carrying basic design, this bat is built for performance and built to last, and wood baseball bats reviews reflect it. This bat has an all-natural finish and is constructed of compacted Ash, so it is not only very durable but balanced well. This bat is more of a power hitter’s bat, but can be used to train, helping players generated bat speed and square the ball up. Whether it’s for practice, preparation or the real thing, this bat is a cost-effective way to ensure you’re getting a quality barrel on the baseball. When it comes to wood finish, this is one of the best baseball bats on the market.
- Look and feel of a wood bat
- Durability of a Composite bat
- Large Composite sweet spot
- BBCOR Certified
- Great for transitioning from metal to wood
- Made with Canadian Hard Maple
- Top-heavy (at the barrel)
- Not a true wood or true composite bat
This bat is a good fit for a variety of people, and can be utilized for many purposes. This can be used by high school or college players, as it is BBCOR certified. It’s fit for use as well as for players in adult leagues. Unlike most composite bats for sale, the true value in this bat is that it provides the look, feel, sound, and feedback of a wood bat, all while providing durability in a way that no wood bat can. So many times, one pitch on the handle or off the end of the bat can cut down a good wood bat in its prime. With this composite wood, that is much less likely to happen because of its composite core that not only provides good pop and feel, but a long life, making it versatile as well as one of the best cheap -3 baseball bats. In fact, because of this unique design, Demarini reviews show this is one of the best -3 baseball bats overall on the market. Whether you’re using it to stay ahead of the curve in a youth wood bat league, for the look and feel of a wood bat in an adult baseball league, or to help ensure a smooth transition from high school or college to the pros, the DeMarini D271 Pro Maple Composite Baseball Bat is sure to do the trick.
- Composite bat: considered a lightweight, durable material
- Rotating handle allows hands to stay short to the ball
- Well balanced, not top-heavy
- Minimal vibration
- Large sweet spot
- Feels very light
- Great “pop”
- Rotating handle could be considered a gimmick, could affect durability
The MAKO TORQ 3 is one of the hottest bats on the market. Easton bat reviews describe revolutionary technology that allows the handle to rotate during the course of a swing and do what many believe helps bring the bat on a truer path to the ball, staying “inside the ball” and hitting it with more backspin. This bat is one of the main products rolled out by Easton, one of the most respected baseball companies in the world, and is among the best Easton bats for sale. Many would argue it’s among the best -3 baseball bats available. Solid pop, huge sweet spot, and flashy looks are just some of the positives that have been directed at the TORQ 3, and its advertisements have flooded commercial breaks during Major League Baseball games. The obvious result has been that people want to buy the Easton MAKO TORQ 3, because it works.
- Strong, durable Alloy material
- Outstanding value
- Large sweet spot
- Less vibration than most Alloy bats
- Considered a “power hitter” bat
- Traditionally a well-respected brand and model
- More vibration than composite bat
- A bit top-heavy
If you’re ballin’ on a budget, this is probably the bat for you. This bat is made of Alloy material, widely considered the lesser quality material of the options when buying a baseball bat. However, this bat is a traditional power, it has gotten rave reviews over the years, and this year is no different. By all accounts, this is a top-of-the-line cheap -3 baseball bat, as most of the usual disadvantages of buying an Alloy bat- smaller sweet spot, more vibration, less pop- are not considered problems with the Omaha. On the contrary, this bat has received outstanding feedback on all fronts. Of all Louisville baseball bats for sale, this is most widely considered a power hitter’s bat because of its tendency to be top-heavy. The BBCOR Omaha could be just what you’re looking for if you're on more of a budget and still looking for a bat that is going to produce the long ball.
- Composite design
- Virtually zero vibration
- Wonderfully balanced
- Game-ready upon delivery, an unusual characteristic for composite bats
- Designed to be flexible
- Great sweet spot and pop
- Unusual sound
- Not for those who would prefer stiffer bats
From youth leagues to college, when you’re looking at the best -3 baseball bats available in the industry, this is a bat model that has established itself as one of the most well rounded and respected products in the industry. Made from composite design yet designed to be ready as soon as it’s received, this bat will provide the control and power that contact and power hitters alike can appreciate. Built to feel extremely lightweight and flexible during the course of a swing, the TPX serves as a catapult to the baseball, creating higher speeds with the barrel of the bat all while maintaining the player’s bat control. Of the group, although the others certainly have their advantages, this is the bat considered the most well-rounded. So if you’re looking for one of the best metal baseball bats that allows you to do it all while you’re fine-tuning your game, the TPX Z-1000 is a fantastic option.
While there are obviously more than five baseball bats for sale on the market and certainly varying opinions and different baseball bats reviews on what the best options are, we feel as though these are some viable options for people looking to play this game at a variety of levels, and hopefully this provides some clarity on some things to look for. Remember, there is no such thing as a cardinal rule when it comes to selecting baseball bat length, weight, style or brand. No one bat us universally better than another. For high school and college players, often times the cheap -3 baseball bats are the best option depending on player style. The most essential rule is that the bat fits the player its intended for. The bottom line is that there are a ton of options out there, but the most important thing of all is that the player who is going to swing the bat feels comfortable doing so and that he or she will be pleased with the results, at least most of the time. Remember, the bat is only part of the equation. We wish you good luck on your baseball-bat-buying journey and throughout the 2017 season!