Finding the Best Youth Aluminum Barrel Bat of 2014 is a difficult task as there are several in the category with solid reputations. Youth bats are 2 1/4 barrel bats (opposed to Senior League or Big Barrel which are 2 5/8 or 2 3/4) with a drop in weight to length ratio anywhere from -5 to -15 (or so).
Criteria are user reviewed performances, resale value, sting dampening and durability.
User reviews put the Vexxum, even with its aluminum alloy barrel, squarely in the best performing bats of all types for 2014. Considering how composite crazy the market is at the moment, that is quite the feat. The only other aluminum barrel bat to make the top 10 youth barrel is DeMarini’s Voodoo–and since the Voodoo runs about $30 more and has slightly less user performance ratings the Vexxum takes the prize.
The 2014 Vexxum is hot out of the wrapper with a gigantic sweet spot that would rival any composite shtick. The two-piece bat put DeMarini on the map of legitimate metal baseball bats and if they keep making bats that performance like the Vexxum hybrid DeMarini will stay there.
Resale value on the Vexxum is decent. It retailed for $179 out of the gates and can still be sold for over $115 new in wrapper with warranty. Lightly used is still fetching around $80. 50%+ in the resale market almost a year later is very respectable.
The bat swings very balanced. However, there are some complaints that the bat is hard to ‘get around’. If you are going with a Vexxum, do know that DeMarini bats tend to come in significant heavier than their stated weight. We believe this has to do with weighing the bat before they add the handle and grip. Any way, do know a 30/18 DeMarini Vexxum will have a swing weight closer to a 32/20 Easton S1–not so much because the weight is distributed differently (although it is since the S1 is handle heavy), but because the Vexxum adds a good 1.5 to 2.5 ounces above its stated weight. Per stated ounces it swings a lot like the XL1 although the balance point on the XL series is further down the bat then the Vexxum.
Honorable Mentions in Best Youth Baseball Bat with an Aluminum Barrel of 2014: DeMarini Voodoo, Louisville Slugger Vertex.