We have written a “best bat” article for many different age groups. As we sit down to write the Best Bat for 12 Year Old blurb, we can’t help but think we will be repeating ourselves—especially since the 11 year old recommendations currently mirror our 12 year old picks. As such, we’d simply refer you to that article here with a strong recommendation for any of those bats. There are a few exceptions to those suggestions which we make below. If you are looking for the short answer, then we recommend DeMarini’s CF Zen 2 5/8 in a drop 8 to 11 year old baseball players. Then we recommend the Slugger LXT for fastpitch players.
USSSA Banned the CF Zen in a drop 8
Do note, since we first published this article, the CF Zen in the 2 5/8 and drop 8 has been outlawed by the USSSA. This means that in leagues where they follow the USSSA rules then the drop 8 Zen is not allowed. You can get the CF Zen retooled and re-stamped by DeMarini.
Other Age Recommendations
14 to 18 years old: BBCOR Recommendations
Best Bat for a 7 Year Old: 7U Baseball Bat Reviews
Best Bat for an 8 Year Old: 8U Baseball Bat Reviews
Best Bat for a 9 Year Old: 9U Baseball Bat Reviews
Best Bat for a 10 Year Old: 10U Baseball Bat Reviews
Best Bat for an 11 year Old: 11u Bat Reviews
Best Bat for a 12 year old: 12U Bat Recommendations
Best Bat for a 13 year Old: 13U Bat Recommendations
The Best Bat for 12 Year Old Caveats
As we discuss above, our recommendations for a 12 year old do not change from an 11 year old. Often these groups are very similar and play on the same team. But we would suggest a couple of ideas as your player moves up the ranks. Here are two:
BBCOR is coming soon
For the non fastpitch readers among us BBCOR may throw a wrench in our plans. While optimal bat size for optimal bat speed and performance may be in the 19 to 22 ounce range for any given 12 year old, it’s important to remember that in just a few short years these 12 year olds will be required to swing a BBCOR bats.BBCOR bats, you will recall, are required to have a drop 3 length to weight comparison. Meaning, a 12 year old swinging a 20 ounce bat today may very well need to swing a 27 ounce bat in all of 18 months from now. It’s possible, indeed probable, pushing their bat’s weight an ounce or two into the mid 20’s will pay dividends in the long run—even if it requires they struggle for a number of weeks with a heavier bat.In other words, don’t be too shy to push you 12 year old’s bat size a click or to up in ounces when compared to their 11 year old counterparts.
2 to 3 Year Bat Life
With BBCOR bats right around the corner its possible this 12 year old’s bat may be the last ‘little league’ or ‘big barrel’ bat they need. If that is the case with you, be willing to push your budget limit a bit. This 12 year old’s bat likely won’t be a one and done similar to when they 8, 9 and 10 years old. 12 years old seems about the time most kids figure out they really like baseball or wish they were doing something else. An investment in a bat for a 12 year old won’t risk dust collection at 13 when they decide against the sport—as all those kids quit at 11.Of course your results may vary with this principle, but something to consider as you search around for a 12 year old’s bat.