The DeMarini CF5 vs Easton 2013 XL3 head to head match up is an interesting one. DeMarini’s CF5 Youth Bat (DXCFL-LE) and Easton’s XL3 (YB13X3) were two feature bats in the 2 1/4 barrel of 2013. Both are a drop 11 bat.
From a construction standpoint, the most obvious difference between the two is the XL3 is a one-piece aluminum bat and the CF5 is a two piece composite bat. (You can read more about the two piece/one piece debate here and composite/aluminum debate here.) Both bats have good size barrels and their coverage area is nearly identical.
I am surprised at how much the CF5 weighs compared to its stated weight. I know many two-piece composite bats are weighted without their handle or end cap–its just a barrel measurement. However, I have received bats before that have been mis-weighed/printed. The fact it is 2oz off makes me wonder….
Assuming the CF5 isn’t misidentified at the factory (and I’d guess it was not) then the results are surprising compared to the hype we hear about the XL3 being end loaded. The swing weights (or MOI’s) of the XL3 and the CF5 are virtually identical (less than 3% different at the knob) at the same stated length (31 inches). If we are going to call the XL3 a ‘heavy swing’ that is endloaded then we better start calling the CF5 the same.
There is no fair answer as to what bat is better. They are both high end bats from well known companies. They are very similar in swing weights and should feel the same through the zone. If you are looking for the competitors equivilant swing weight you can trade straight across (e.g. 29 inch for 29 ich).
I’d suspect most folks, assuming the prices were the same, would take the CF5 simply because composite tends to hit the ball further for a longer period of time. If you are willing to go composite with composite pricing you may also want to consider Eastons XL1 (which is the two-piece composite version of the XL3).