We got a chance to take the new 2016 Adidas RBZ EQT X3—which Adidas made in conjunction with TaylorMade—into the cage and can happily report the bat feels fantastic. It’s a noticeably light swing with really smooth feel through contact and the grip and handle size feel right. Well hit balls have real sense of standing in the tee box watching a little white ball zoom away from you.
As a bit of history, you may recall, for the 2015 season, Adidas showed us a single piece alloy BBCOR bat (EQT X1) and a Hybrid (Composite handle, Alloy Barrel) in the EQT X2. This year, at the NCAA Collge World Series, Adidas revealed they were making a new bat called the EQT X3 RBZ (Adidas Site). The RBZ stands for Rocketballz and is a trademark of TaylorMade, an Adidas golf company. The RBZ EQT X3 was produced with the help of the TaylorMade golf brand known for long drives and high end equipment.
The 2016 Adidas RBZ is a high end two piece composite bat with two general claims. The first claim is the swing weight is at the absolute bottom of the permissible spectrum. (In fact, rumor is, they had to actually add weight to the bat for it to pass the minimum standard). This remarkably low swing weight (which we confirmed with our trust swing weight calculator) should be helpful for the host of younger players looking for a light swinging BBCOR bat.
The second general claim from Adidas, which we can also confirm as far as possible, is the RBZ’s performance is at the absolute peak of .50 BBCOR standards. When the barrel of a bat is composite, manufacturers expect it to increase in performance pop over time. Subsequently, bats with composite barrels are usually designed to have an out of the wrapper performance below the .50 standard (like, say .47). Then, after the break in period, the .50 standard is reached. We have no reason to doubt that Adidas didn’t reach this maximum.
Generally speaking, a two piece composite bat with an ultra light swing weight—like the 2016 Adidas RBZ—is built for the younger high school player looking for as much bat speed as possible. The RBZ fills an important niche in the market for players who want a two piece composite bat with the lightest swing possible. Other bats in this space (but with slighly higher swing weights) would be the DeMarini CF8 and Easton MAKO.
As players get stronger they tend to prefer aluminum barrels due to their generally higher swing weight and hot out of the wrapper performance. Hence the reason we saw a few collegiate players in 2015 swinging the Adidas EQT X2 or EQT X1 due to its bigger beef, heavier swing weight and alloy barrel. But, in the beginning of their BBCOR career, a light swinging two piece composite is a smart way to go.
The rumor is Adidas will also release a coupleyouth and big barrel bats in the EQT X1 and EQT X2 for the 2016 season. As well, the EQT X1 and EQT X2 will continue to be produced for the 2016 season. This gives Adidas a full complement of bats in a single piece aluminum, hybrid and two piece composite bat all built for peak performance to serve a particular part of the market.