When the Louisville Slugger brand was purchased by the Wilson brand of companies a couple years ago, there were many questions as to its future—none more pressing than regarding their release of performance baseball bats. In particular, with DeMarini also owned by Wilson, how would the merger effect the release of Louisville Slugger’s brand of performance bats?
Individual 2017 Louisville Slugger Bat Reviews
917 Prime Review: What many consider the best 2016 BBCOR bat is back with a couple upgrades from 2016.
617 Solo Review: New Single piece stick with a composite end cap.
517 Omaha Review: It’s back and upgraded. We take some hacks and get some feedback in our review.
You might also like our 2016 Louisville Slugger Review Lineup.
Two years later we have some what of an answer. As far as we have observed, the commitment to produce top shelf performance bats hasn’t changed within the Slugger Brand. This year, just as they did the year before they were acquired, Slugger released three bats in their performance space: The 917 Prime, the 617 Solo and the 517 Omaha. Absent is a 717 and the 7 series two piece hybrid design. New is a 617 Solo, which is a single piece composite design.
Below we let you in on what we know so far. Longer reviews will be linked to this article when they are added to the site. For now, enjoy some highlights. (917 Prime Review).
2017 Louisville Slugger 917 Prime Review
We’ve reviewed the 917 Prime at length. In short, this 2017 version is a larger barreled version with the same intent. Meant for the largest swath of players, this bat is a light swinging two piece composite. Those who need (or want) as much barrel as possible per given swing weight, and those who want as comfortable a collision as possible, will find the 917 a happy swing.
The bat boasts a bigger barrel and a custom Lizard Skin grip when compared to the 2016 916. Although only in BBCOR at the time of this writing, we expect a full sizing line up in the 2017 917 Prime. Expect Big Barrel, Senior Barrel and youth leagues in drops ranging from 5 to 14.
2017 Louisville Slugger 617 Solo Review
The 2017 Louisville Slugger 617 Solo is a new bat in Slugger’s lineup. The goal with the Solo is to create a single piece aluminum feel with an extra large barrel. Notably, the claim is the bat will have a noticably light swing weight. In fact, the lightest Slugger will make in the BBCOR line. This is achieved with an upgraded alloy and a new composite end cap for the new 617 Solo.
As we get this bat in hand and in the cage we should have much more to say. For now, at least for us, it is the most intriguing bat of the 2017 Slugger line and, frankly, possibly the entire 2017 class.
2017 Louisville Slugger 517 Omaha Review
Like the 617 Solo, we don’t have much specific information on the Omaha 517. Unlike the 617, however, the 517 appears to have a predecessor. If the 2017 517 Omaha is an upgrade from the Omaha 516 from 2016, then we can expect a single piece aluminum bat in the value space. The 516 won a number of ‘Best Value’ awards on this site, so we look with great anticipation what upgrades may come on the 517 Omaha. Expect updates to this in mid August when more information comes on the early September release.
2017 Louisville Slugger Reviews: Over Views
Some look forward to the release of Slugger’s performance baseball bat line like a 7 year old looks forward to Christmas morning. Indeed, we are quite a big giddy ourselves. The proposition of a new iteration (617 Solo), a larger barreled 9 series and the reincarnation of the 516 into another quality value bat is what this blog lives for. Before their release, you can bet we are scraping the internet for any piece of data we can find. As that comes in, and as player usage gets recorded, we’ll keep up our quest to deliver that most objective review to our readers.