Vendor bias and manufacturing margins push a lot of baseball bats off of your facebook and instagram feeds. This has nothing to do with the bats not being legit but, instead, vendor’s inventory levels and marketing teams’ focus. Both of which are understandable traits to have when you are looking to sell bats, but not so useful when consumers are wading through the right bat for them.
Want to show up with a bat no one ever heard of but rakes? Then keep reading.
2018 Bats You Might Have Missed
|BBCOR||Easton||Beast X Hybrid||$$$|
|USSSA||Marucci||Hex Alloy 2||$$|
Consider this, there are no less than 75 different models of 2018 Baseball Bats. Each one of those 75 come in several sizes with some, like the 518 Omaha, that come more than 20 sizes. Added altogether a baseball bat buyer must sort through something like 600 different performance baseball bat options. This is say nothing of the number of sub $100 bats on the market nor anything about wood bats or 2017 models either.
Since we have hit with every singe 2018 baseball bat, here we suggest three bats you may have missed but likely should have considered for your bag in 2018. These bats are off the beaten path options but, for at least some, we think them worthy options of any serious baseball players bags.
BBCOR bats are the most common type of baseball bat. Although more players play in non-BBCOR leagues more BBCOR bat types are made than any other. Here are three that should have probably received more consideration from most.
Easton is a major brand and has plenty of distribution. Yet much of their marketing hype gets lost on the more expensive Ghost X and, this year at least, the Easton USA Bat line. Leaving the Beast X Hybrid BBCOR to fend for itself. But, true hitters love this bat. It is an ultra smooths swing, feels great on mishits and hits and uses a swing weight that most drop 3 players can swing (that is, light). As well, the price point is more reasonable and the aluminum barrel should last any player at least a couple years if not several.
At this point, most have heard of Axe Bats. Our experience, in talking with people about these bats, is that most have an opinion about the idea before they’ve actually tried it. We dare say we’ve swung an Axe bat as much as any consumer in the world and, to be short, we like it. The Axe Elite in BBCOR is a perfect blend of balance, price, barrel size and durability. Most never consider Axe BBCOR and, if they do, they stay in the two piece Avenge world. But, those looking for something a bit different in a hybrid should really like the Axe Elite. We note, too, the 2017 and 2018 versions are identical except for some slight color changes—so either one works fine.
We have trouble making sense of Mizuno somedays. These guys make quality stuff but, for whatever reason, struggle to get on the top of people’s list when choosing baseball bats. Although, most would agree, few think Mizuno is anything other than a baseball company. Based in Japan with US distribution, the company makes unique stuff that feels good and works. We like, for example, the soft barrelled MaxCor bat that few have ever tried. But it swings light, has a big barrel and can really drive the ball. If you see a lot of heat at the plate the MaxCor is a legit, top shelf, BBCOR bat.
USA Bats have made the bat industry crazy. Three out of every five searches on the internet right now are for something to do with USA Baseball bats. And, despite the fact there are not as many USA options as there are BBCOR or USSSA bats, there are still a few we fell like have fell through the cracks. Here are four USA Bats you should have considered but, for whatever reason, probably did not.
Very late to the market, (it officially released in March), the 2018 Techzilla S-Series is a serious USA bat worthy of consideration. Those in the drop 9 space looking for a great feel on contact in the $200 market should consider this bat. Our hitter’s thought it was “great” and put it right along side the USA Bats that ranked out the best. See our 2018 S-Series Techzilla review.
The 2018 Easton S750C is a Dicks’ Sporting Goods exclusive at an attractive price point for the entry level performance USA Bat player. How Dick’s convinced Easton to only release this bat with them is beyond us. The bat has a great feel and uses much of the same technology found in the Easton Beast X Hybrid which is our favorite USA Bat of the year despite its extraordinarily heavy swing weight.
For whatever reasons, virtually no one has considered the Mizuno Covert USA Bat for 2018. We found the bat with a good sized barrel and a nice average swing weight—although officially considered a drop 9. The bat swings like a heavier drop 10 and many slightly older kids could get away with this two piece hybrid that had very good exit speeds. See our 2018 Mizuno Covert review.
No one has considered the 2018 Rawlings Threat because, as of this writing, it is not yet released to the public. Many hoping to get their bats for the start of the season never even considered waiting—as they should not have. But, for those looking to hold off for a few weeks into April, and are in the drop 12 market, might find a lot of happiness in this mid range, single piece composite from Rawlings.
With such a significant focus on USA Bats few companies really pushed the envelope on the USSSA space. In fact, most 2018 USSSA Bats are simply the 2017 Senior League (USSSA) repainted or renamed. But, there is at least one USSSA bat that fewer folks considered than should have.
Although a lot of people have considered the Hex Alloy 2 from Marucci we think the focus on USA Bats has really put Marucci backstage. Marucci will not produce USA bats for the 2018 market. They may produce some at some point in the future but they refused to join the race in this precarious market and we can’t blame them. This Hex Alloy 2 is a legit choice for any looking to find a bat a bit off the beaten path with some great user feedback.