The 2017 Little League World Series brings a fresh take on bats like the Little League world has never seen. Easton is still the sponsored bat company no doubt, but the end of a 1.15 BPF era is highlighted by this last tournament with those types of bats. Coming September 1, 2017, USABats will be for sale, and come January 1, 2018 non-USABats will be illegal in Little League (and some other leagues). Below we highlight some of the bats coming from Easton.
Best Place to Buy Easton USABats
On September 1, check with your favorite major vendor for Easton USABats. We expect there to be considerable options on Amazon for pricing and sizing options, but don't expect any legitimate discounts on these bats until late spring of 2018.and as well as other major vendors. We always like to check
Do note, too, the 2017 LLWS is played with bats that are painted like the 2018 USABats but are actually BPF 1.15 2 1/4 bats.
From what we have gathered from a few different vendors, Instagram accounts and industry emails, Easton will dominate the Youth Little League bat space in sheer volume in 2018. Expect no fewer than six performance bats in the USABat Easton space, and potentially upwards of nine. None will be available for sale until September 1st and a few may take a month or two after that to get through testing and distribution.
Below are highlights on the nine possible bats we have heard floated for Easton's 2018 USABat line.
2018 Easton USABat Review Lineup
Ghost X Drop 10, 11
The Ghost X is a two piece composite bat that replaces the MAKO as the top shelf performance bat from Easton. Expect a monster barrel and a smooth smash. This will come in sizes from a 29 to a 32 inch.
However, like all USABats, we expect everyone to feel as if they've been robbed by bats that simply don't have as much pop as they used to. The reason for this is, obviously, because they don't.
Easton Ghost X Drop 8, 5
If you would like to swing a drop 5 USABat, then from what we have gathered from the industry, only the VELO and this Ghost X will be your ticket. And the VELO is considerably different in composition from the Ghost X insomuch that you won't be able to find a composite barrel in a drop 5 in the USABat line. In other words, if you want a two piece composite in the USABat space, then you have one option: The Easton Ghost X.
Ghost Hyperlite: One Piece Composite Drop 11
We do not have a ton of information on this bat. But, if it is like the Hyperlite from 2017, then expect a single piece composite in the USABat space. Rumor has it the bat will be a drop 11. It will be the biggest drop Easton will make in the USABat for a barrel that still measures at 2 5/8.
Beast Hybrid Drop 10 USABat
Also in the drop 10 space, Easton will make a Hybird USABat. Expect this to compete directly with DeMarini's Voodoo Balanced line that will come in a similar size and composition. We would not be surprised to find this Easton Ghost X Hybrid as the best USABat in the space.
Beast X 2 5/8 Drop 10
Easton will also develop their single piece aluminum bat line into a performance USABat. They will use the new Beast X that is also used in the BBCOR and Senior League space. These bats are the speed versions and are built for a lighter feel of the hot out of the wrapper single piece aluminum construction.
Beast X 2 5/8 Drop 8
As you will soon learn, anything that says Beast X is a single piece aluminum bat---not to be confused (though we are sure many will) with the 2018 Easton MAKO Beast, which is the two piece composite. The drop 8 will serve the slightly stronger hitter in the USABat space who needs more than a drop 10, but can't quite handle a drop 5 just yet.
Beast X 2 5/8 Drop 5
If you would like an aluminum single piece bat in the drop 5 range then the Easton Beast X and the Rawlings VELO might be your only options this year. Expect both to compete head to head for the big hitters in the new USABat space.
Beast X Lite 2 1/4 Drop 12
To achieve much more than a drop 10, companies are getting unique. One easier way to accomplish that is by decreasing the barrel size. Easton will do this in a Beast X Lite that serves the drop 12 market. It will swing a 2 1/4 barrel with the USAbat stamp. And we fully expect most people to hate this bat because it loses both the pop and gains no diameter. And a single piece aluminum? Ouch. Time will tell.
2018 Easton USABat Recommendations
Experience will reveal how recommendable these bats are. We are not convinced people will like them very much. But, if they are to like any in the new USABat standard, we expect the Easton line to be the best of the bunch. Until we get more player feedback and insight from game use we won't make that determination. September 1st can't come soon enough...