If you weren’t paying close attention to the Marucci CAT 6 review we put up a few days ago, or were too distracted by our infatuation with that angelic bat, you may have failed to notice the CAT 6 does not come in anything lighter than a drop 8. Did Marucci just drop the ball and forget about this huge section of the little league world that needs something lighter than a drop 5? Hardly.
Marucci’s solution to the demand of a lighter swinging youth bat took them to a new foray in the space named the HEX Composite. This inaugural address in this series is a single piece composite bat with a remarkably pliable grip and very balanced feel with a gigantic barrel.
The one piece construction is a full length high end composite with some ring free technology. The bat has a very traditional hitting feel with honest feedback for hitters. This bat, hit on the sweet spot, is a verifiable bomb dropper. In our tests we did feel some flex in the handle but we think it was more a function of the cushy grip instead of any real flex.
Speaking of the cushy grip, we think it will be the first thing you notice when you pick it up. It is the softest grip we have felt on any bat this year (and maybe ever). Underneath the grip is an additional rubber layer. This both increases the volume of the grip for a more tactile feel and also helps cushion the one piece construction’s ring on miss-hits. We found miss-hits and sting to be considerably dampened in the category and, as a result, we really like the grip. We think, if it came down to grip, most little leaguers would choose the Hex Composite.
From a swing weight perspective, the bat has a low mass moment of inertia comparable to the S1 from Easton or the G3 from Combat. Not as light swinging as a CF7 from DeMarini or a Senior Air from Rip-It. Nor is it as heavy as an XL1, Voodoo FT, 915 or 715. The Hex Composite is a nice balanced swing weight that most hitters will wield just fine.
What also might be interesting to folks who wonder about this stuff, we found the actual weight of the bat to be the same as the stated weight. Most companies’ bats are a good 1 ounce over stated weight. Some are upwards of 3 ounces over the stated weight. Yet Marucci’s composite Hex bat, as far as we could tell on two different tries, had the same exact stated weight and actual weight.
The most remarkable thing about this bat is its barrel size. The over sized barrel and slow transition neck give it the highest plate coverage per swing weight in the business. Its closest competitor in plate coverage by barrel size would be the Easton XL1 and MAKO–however, the XL1 has a swing weight that is 50% heavier and the MAKO has a price point $100 higher.
Another close competitor in both size and barrel volume is the Combat G3. The G3’s drop 10 swing weight is very similar (almost exact as far as we measured) to the Marucci Hex. However, the barrel coverage on the Marucci is measurably larger than Combat’s flagship bat—especially in the neck of the bat.
This Marucci stick is a full composite bat that comes in only a drop 10 for the 2 5/8 and 2 3/4 barrel size. It will not be released in a BBCOR (as far as I understand) nor will it be in a youth 2 1/4 barrel for the foreseeable future. Marucci’s goal seems to be to produce the best single bat in its class. A welcome approach considering some other companies’ desire to be all things to all people.
Overall we are very pleased with this bat. We do wish it had more sizing options (like a 2 1/4 barrel as well as a drop 8 and drop 5), but those looking for a drop 10 balanced swing and prefer one piece composite bats should have this bat at the top of their list. We feel this bat is a near perfect combination of emphasis on power hitters and base hitters. While its sizing options are limited, we do feel the bat has the widest appeal a bat of its construction size possibly could.
We recommend this bat for hitters who: Want a one piece composite bat with a balanced swing; Want a top shelf bat for reasonable top shelf pricing; Are looking for the maximum allowable pop; Are looking for the bat with the largest barrel per swing weight; Need a drop 10 balanced swing.
We do not recommend this bat for hitters who: Prefer two piece bats; Need or prefer a drop other than 10; Need or want an aluminum barrel.