FYI: There is a newer version of this bat
After being named the best 2017 BBCOR baseball bat, the 618 SOLO from Louisville Slugger is BACK!
If the bat is anything like last year, and it is, then you can expect a sweet swinging single piece with an extended composite end cap.
It is the most balanced bat Slugger makes and by balanced we mean the lightest swinging. It will also come in a 29-inch which we absolutely love. Count the following as our 2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo Review. An absolute must read before you pull the trigger.
Fun Fact: The 29-inch 2018 618 Solo is the lightest swinging BBCOR bat on the planet. We know this because we measured the swing weight of every one of them. It also did quite well on our exit speed tests.
Also find this bat in:
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Industry Reference Guide
Other reference pages on the 618 Solo can be found no these industry pages below. We refer to them, as well as our own data and experience, to write this 2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo review.
|Amazon||2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo|
|JustBats||2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo|
|Ebay||2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo|
|CloseoutBats||2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo|
|BaseballExpress||2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo|
Louisville Slugger 618 Solo Video Review
As we have only seen this bat hit on TV (during the CWS and Regionals) it is impossible to make any firm determinations as to recommendations. If the bat is anything like the 2016 Slugger 716 Select then you can expect a somewhat balanced swing weight and a nice smooth smash. As we gather more data we will update that information here.
BBCOR 618 Solo
Louisville Slugger 618 Solo
The 618 Solo in BBCOR is one of our favorite BBCOR Bats. It comes in a 29 inch and an ultra light swing so works perfect for that undersized 14 or 13 year old looking for as much bat speed as possible. It also has a good sized barrel and enough girth to avoid major hand stings on mishits. Throw in the fact it prices out well and we are in love.
USA 618 Solo
Louisville Slugger 618 Solo
The drop 11 618 Solo USA was the most popular USA bat in 2018. Even well into the 2019 season that bat is hard to find. It hit the sweet spot in a well priced light swinging bat that parents and players couldn’t get enough of. It was sold out for several months and struggled to keep in stock. It had the perfects swing weight and a price point parents were willing to pay.
USSSA 618 Solo
Louisville Slugger 618 Solo
The USSSA version of the 618 got ho hum reviews. People didn’t hate it. But, unlike the USA Version, they weren’t waiting in line to pick one up. We think the lack of barrel size and stiff feel made a lot of players shy away. In any event, the bat is just fine. Don’t expect some world beater but it is a bat with good durability and a great look.
2018 vs 2017 618 Solo
Slugger changed two things on the 2018 version of the SOLO. The first is a different composite structure on the end cap. The 2017 version had a composite end cap for sure, but the 2018 SOLO uses a new composite that is even lighter. It is, in part at least, some of the reason the 618 SOLO is the ligthest swinging bat in the 2018 Slugger lineup.
The only truly comparable bat tot he 618 SOLO on the market, aside from the 617 SOLO from 2017, is the Rawlings VELO in BBCOR. Both the Rawlings VELO and the 618 SOLO have prided themsevles on producing a light swinging single piece with an extended end cap.
What the 618 SOLO has that the VELO does not is a broad range of lengths. That reality is the driving feature in our preference for the SOLO over the VELO. Although, as many like to point out, the VELO has a much longer pedigree than the two year old SOLO line.
Research: 2018 Louisville Slugger 618 Solo
Louisville Slugger 2018 Performance Bat Lineup
In time, we will discuss the entire Louisville Slugger lineup. Below is a rough draw on where we think the 718 will fit in the 2018 Slugger line. Expect this to change as we gather more information.
In short, the 718 Select appears to be an upgrade from the 716 in 2016 that boasted a two piece hybrid structure. As we get more time with the bat, and start to hear back from players that have actually used it, we will keep our notes and data points in the following 2018 Louisville Slugger 718 Select Review.
Louisville Slugger 2018 Swing Weight Index
On each Louisville Slugger 2018 BBCOR bat you will also find a swing weight index. This is remarkably useful for online buyers. As you can see below, the 618 SOLO is the lightest swing in the lineup per given bat length.
2018 618 Solo Construction
As was the 617 Solo built, so goes the 618. It includes a single piece aluminum barrel with an extended composite end cap and a Lizard Skin grip. It is a rather straight forward bat with a stiff feel, okay sized barrel and remarkably lights wing weight.
Granted, in 2017 USABats were not invented yet so looking at an old model is impossible. But, in terms of construction, the 618 Solo is built just like the 617 version in the BBCOR space.
Bat Sizing Options
618 USABat Sizing
In 2018 the plan is for the 2018 USABat 618 Solo to be produced in a drop 11 only. The drop, you should know, is the numerical difference between the length of bat in inches and weight in ounces. So, a 30-inch 618 USABat will weigh 19 ounces (30 minus 11 is 19).
Size lengths range from 28 up to 32 and make it the most lengths in an sinlge line of bats for 2018 in the USABat space. We have learned that at leas some of the smaller sizes are a bit harder to find.
The bat also comes in a BBCOR length (all the way down to 29 inches) as well as a USSSA/Big Barrel Drop 10.