Marucci upgraded their Hex Alloy with a new barrel, more focused balance, and some sizing options in a 2018 version. This is a welcome addition to the 2018 line of big barrel bats and delivers a nice middle ground bat for those not quite willing to splurge on a CAT 7, but want to be in the performance bat space. After extensive use, serious cage time, conversations with major vendors and the manufacturer, we put together this 2018 Marucci Hex Alloy 2 review.
Release notes: Marucci releases bats on a two year cycle. Unlike most other marquee bat companies that come out with new iterations every year, Marucci likes the idea of a slower bake time on their bats. In other words, if you are wondering where the 2017 version of this bat was, then go back one more year. And, in fact, we called the original Hex Alloy a 2015 bat. It was affectionately known as the Skittle. This year’s should affectionately be known as the Screamer.
In terms of quality, the 2018 Marucci Hex Alloy sits somewhere between the CAT 7 and the Marucci F5, but it also fills in a size the CAT 7 does not come in*. That is, the Hex Alloy only comes in a USSSA 2 3/4 drop 10. If that is your niche, and you want a CAT 7, then we would recommend the Hex Alloy as a reasonable, and less expensive, substitute.
*The Buster Posey Pro Metal bat is technically a CAT 7 in a drop 10 2 3/4. These, however, are limited in quantity.
Note, too, this bat uses an upgraded alloy from the 2015 version of the bat with the same name. And that upgraded alloy makes a monster barrel with a very loud ping. Like, very loud. It does not, however, come with the same anti-vibration knob that has helped make the CAT 7 as famous as it is. Here are some general guidelines as to who we think will and will not like the Marucci Hex Alloy.
Compared to the 2015/16 version of this bat, which we affectionately called the skittle, the 2018 Marucci Hex Alloy 2 boasts a larger barrel with a slightly lower swing weight. This is made possible by thinning out the barrel walls with a more expensive aluminum alloy.
The bat will continue to be made in the drop 10 2 3/4 Senior barrel bat. Our guess is this will find a lot of takers. But the 2 1/4 youth barrel bat will not exist in the 2018 version. The reasons for this are obvious enough: Little League is no longer using BPF 1.15 bats, but instead are moving to a USABat standard. From our conversations with Marucci, they will not be making a USABat anytime soon and likely anytime ever.
Other information about the Hex Alloy 2 can be gleaned from reading our 2015 Marucci Hex Alloy review. Although the previous iteration, that article delivers a good deal of information about the thinking behind the Hex Alloy 2. It stands as the most read piece on the Hex Alloy found anywhere on the internet.
As well, you would do well to read through the 2018 Marucci CAT 7 review. Although it has the addition of the anti vibration knob, the CAT 7 stands as a good comparison when compared to the Hex Alloy.
In addition to previous year’s piece on the Omaha, we think our collection of 2018 baseball bat reviews might be worth your gander.
Although Marucci has great distribution for many of their products, it is not uncommon for the Hex Alloy to get left out. The fact it only serves one model size gives a lot of vendors pause. However, that said, the major retailers (online) will know about this bat and should be carrying it in style. Check your favorites like Amazon.and . We also like to look directly on
At its core the 2018 Hex Alloy is a single piece composite bat. The alloy in the barrel is ultra thin in some spots and uses different layers of thickness to extend the length of the sweet spot. Visually the big barrel is noticeable.
As a general rule, the single piece market has the most success with players who know how to swing hard and are comfortable with honest feedback (aka hand ring) on mishits. Expect a different feel then a two piece bat.
If you are in the drop 10 2 3/4 space then your only option is the Marucci Hex Alloy. The CAT 7 does not come in a drop 10 (excpet for the Junior Big Barrels which are very short sizes).
In other words, if you want a CAT 7 but are in the drop 10 space then we would suggest the Marucci Hex Alloy as a very viable alternative. It is, after all, the same barrel. You just miss out on the anti vibration know but you also save a few bucks.
Outside of the Marucci line, we could argue the most comparable bat is the Rawlings VELO. Both bats are light swinging and big barrel bats made for the drop 10 space.
However, the Rawlings VELO does swing lighter as the composite end cap and variable wall thickness, as well as its shorter barrel, all lend to an easier bat to top out on swing speed. The VELO also comes in a number of other sizes instead of just a drop 10 2 3/4.
Inside the Marucci line, both the F5 and the Marucci CAT 7 are comparable bats. Both use variable wall thickness and are single piece aluminum bats. But, consider the F5 as a multi-size option and an entry level performance while the CAT 7 competes, in both price and performance, with the top tier of bats on the planet. The Hex Alloy is squarely in the middle.
If you are committed to a single piece aluminum from Marucci, then your decision will come down to what size you are looking for and how much you are willing to spend.
The 2018 Marucci Hex Alloy is built in one very simple, but high demand, size: