2018 Rawlings 5150 Review

2018 Rawlings 5150 Review


The 2018 Rawlings 5150 is a classically designed single piece aluminum bat with enough innovation to consider it a performance bat. We recommend it to the value purchase player and/or the elite hitter who wants a traditional stiff feel with a slightly heavier swinging bat. After hours in the cage and a few games with a few different hitters we put together our 2018 Rawlings 5150 Review.

2018 Rawlings 5150 Review

Best Place to Buy the 2018 Rawlings 5150

As Rawlings' distribution is remarkably wide, you can expect to find the 5150 about any place that is serious about offering high end baseball equipment. It's consumer friendly price point makes it available at both the serious big box store as well as major online retailers. Expect no deals on the 5150 until it comes off of "minimum advertized pricing" (MAP) late spring or early summer of 2018. In the mean time, check places like Amazon for the best price on the Rawilngs 5150.

2018 Rawlings 5150 Video Review

2018 Rawlings 5150 Recommendations

In short, if you like the swing of the Rawlings VELO but wish your drives had a little more power than the 5150 could be your bat. The 5150 is made for good hitters that like a stiff feeling bat with at least a little bit of girth. Although it may ring your hands on mishits occasionally, expect for a better feel than a VELO on a mishit as the added swing weight helps compensate for vibration.

Here are some bullet points describing who may or may not like the Rawlings 5150.

Who Should Buy

  • Prefers Single Piece Bats
  • Likes Hot out of the Wrapper Bats
  • Likes a little more weight in the end cap when compared to the "balanced" bats of today
  • Is looking for a value purchase

Who Should Keep Looking

  • Likes the feel of two piece bats
  • Wants an ultra balanced or end loaded bat
  • Prefers a composite barrel

2018 Rawlings 5150 Construction

The 5150 uses a single piece of aluminum to create a stiff feeling and slightly end-loaded swing. Although most vendors consider this in the "balanced" section, as it is, one should not confuse it with the light swing of a Rawlings VELO or DeMarini CF Zen, for example. The 5150 swings markedly heavier than those bats but not quite as heavy as bats like the Easton Z-Core XL or Louisville Slugger 718 Select.

What makes the 5150 unique, and helps drive the well sized barrel, is the use of a tapered inner barrel. That is, if you were to cut the barrel in half you'd see the bat used different levels of thickness along the barrel wall. This variable wall thickness is tuned to deliver high performance off the center of the barrel, decrease mass and allow for a larger barrel without sacrificing swing speed.

Additionally, as was new to the 2017 Rawlings 5150, ​Rawlings created a laser groove down the horizontal portion of the inner barrel. This groove further reduces swing weight without sacrificing durability. And, as such, allows for a more dialed in swing weight with an even larger barrel still.

2018 Rawlings 5150 Image Gallery

2017 vs 2018 5150

2018 Rawlings 5150 Review

Aside from the paint job, there are no differences between the 2017 and 2018 Rawlings 5150.

Although no changes in construction, there are differences in sizing options. In particular, the addition of the USAbat model is significant. We discuss those under the sizing section of this article.

2018 Rawlings 5150 Sizing

Expect at least three different sizes on the 2018 Rawlings 5150. The most remarkable change in sizing is the addition of a USAbat. 

  • USAbat Drop 11
  • Senior League 2 3/4 Drop 10 27 - 31
  • BBCOR 30 - 34 inch

Rawlings 5150 Comparable Bats

There are a lot of single piece aluminum bats on the market. None, however, use the POP 2.0 tech that adds a laser groove on the inner barrel.

Some, however, do use variable wall thickness to produce a larger barrel and a lighter swing spot. We would suggest the following to bats as competitors to the 5150 market share. Those include:

Marucci CAT 7

2018 Rawlings 5150 Review
2018 Rawlings 5150 Review
2018 Rawlings 5150 Review

2018 5150 Sources

The most read resource on the internet for the 5150 is our 2017 Rawlings 5150 Review. Since it is the same bat, we would suggest it as a nice primer to the 2018 review. 

Off this site we think past user reviews on Amazon are mildly helpful.