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Update: We are tracking the 2019 Little League World Series Bat Usage here.

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Update: We are tracking the 2019 Little League World Series Bat Usage here.

In the last two weeks, we’ve spent at least 2 hours reading player reviews, company literature and vendor takes on the new 2017 Rawlings VELO.

We’ve watched every VELO video we could find and spent a good hour, with several different hitters, in the cage with the Rawlings VELO. That data set, combined with our knowledge on performance baseball bats, prepped us to write this 2017 Rawlings VELO review.

Jump to the full review.


2017 Rawlings Velo Video Review

In the last two weeks, we’ve spent at least 2 hours reading player reviews, company literature and vendor takes on the new 2017 Rawlings VELO.

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Reviews delivered about every week.

Quick Review

We’ve watched every VELO video we could find and spent a good hour, with several different hitters, in the cage with the Rawlings VELO. That data set, combined with our knowledge on performance baseball bats, prepped us to write this 2017 Rawlings VELO review.

Recommendations

BBCOR Velo Recommendations
2017 Rawlings Velo Review

We’d recommend the VELO to any player who prefers an aluminum barreled bat with its hot out of the wrapper functionality*. That player, we would also suggest, should appreciate a light swing weight per barrel size. The VELO receives near universal positive feedback on pop effect at different pitch speeds. At least as well as any bat on the market. As such, from little league to college ball the VELO is a very popular bat.

Price Check
USSSA Velo Recommendations
2017 Rawlings Velo Review

As we discuss below, the VELO has one iteration as a drop 12 two piece composite bat. For this reason, the VELO Composite, as it is called, wouldn’t be a good fit for those who like the loud ping associated with VELO and/or prefer an aluminum barrel.2017 VELO Sizing & Type Options

Price Check

2017 vs 2016 Velo

Last year Rawlings labeled this particular bat the VELO Composite. We've yet to see that differentiation from vendors for the 2017 model. The only way to tell, aside from the serial number, is by looking closely at the picture. The two piece composite looks like, well, a two piece bat.

2016

Bat Review

Velo

We spent a good amount of time in the cage and on the field with the 2016 VELO. Our 9 year old player, who weighs right at 65 pounds, fell in love with the 2016 VELO drop 12 2 3/4 two piece composite.

Price Check

2015

Velo

Rawlings' claim that their hand-loaded version is significantly 'balanced' sells this bat short.

Price Check

Bat Review

Velo

In the last two weeks, we've spent at least 2 hours reading player reviews, company literature and vendor takes on the new 2017 Rawlings VELO.

Price Check

Comparable Bats

In the 2017 class, there is yet to be a truly similar constructed bat. There are single piece aluminum bats, but none with a composite end cap.

The most similar bat to the 2017 VELO is, without surprise, the 2016 VELO. Neither the standard VELO or the VELO composite are any significant amount different. The 2016 and 2017, we should note, are noticably different than the 2015 as the 2015 doesn’t have the extended composite end cap or the groove on the inner barrel as we discuss above.

In previous years, Boombah’s Cannon bat is an attempted replica of the Rawlings VELO. It uses an extended composite end cap to lighten the swing of a mostly aluminum barreled bat.

2019 CAT 6

Compare the CAT 6 Review

JustBats purchased the exclusive rights to the CAT 6. That is, the updated look on the CAT 6—with the red base and white accents—is a JustBats only bat. The expectation, as far as we understand it, is that such will be the case indefinitely. Making such an arrangement, as far as know, a first.

Price Check
2017 517 Omaha

Compare the 517 Omaha Review

As one of the very first to swing the original 515 and 516 Omaha from Louisville Slugger, we have hit regularly with each of those bats over the course of the last two years.

Price Check

Research: 2017 Rawlings Velo

2017 Rawlings VELO Review

Rawlings VELO Composite

The other category includes a single bat. This is:

  • 2 3/4 drop 12 constructed in a two-piece composite fashion (SL7V12)

It may be easiest, if trying to grasp the breadth of the 2017 VELO line, to consider the bat in two general categories. In the main category sits the traditional VELO with its extended composite end cap and aluminum alloy frame. To these bats they’ve added the “HYBRID” tag on the barrel. This is technically true as it combines the aluminum and composite in the same bat. But don’t confuse it with the traditional hybrid setup in the baseball space which has a composite handle and full aluminum barrel.

2017 Velo Construction

Save the two piece VELO Composite, the VELO is built with a full aluminum alloy body with an extended composite end cap. This cap, you’ll notice if you look closely, comes 2 to 3 inches into the barrel. An extended composite end cap drives the balance point toward the hands and gives the bat a lighter swing (lower MOI).

The other feature in the VELO is on the inside of the barrel. If you were to cut it open, you’d find a groove within the barrel. Rawlings refers to this as pOp 2.0. The groove isn’t big enough to hurt durability, but it is, in large measure, how the VELO maintains its low swing weight despite being a mostly aluminum bat.

These construction details, we should note, are the same as the 2016 VELO.

Bat Sizing Options

This grouping includes the very famous:

  • BBCOR (BB7V)
  • A 2 5/8 Senior barrel in a drop 10 (SL7V10)
  • Another 2 5/8 Senior Barrel but in drop 5 (SL7V5)
  • 2 3/4 Big Barrel in a drop 10 (SL7V34)
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