Best BBCOR Bats of 2017
Maximizing your performance will be heavily dependent on choosing the right equipment. A high quality BBCOR bat is one of the essentials to purchase if you are serious about baseball.
Doing some research will show you that the market features many different options. Choosing the right baseball bat is equally important for kids, teens, young adults and professional players. The equipment will be determining for the technique and the development of fundamental skills.
If you’re about to buy a baseball bat in the months to come or in 2017, you’ll find the following guide to be particularly beneficial. It will outline all of the BBCOR bat buying essentials and present some of the top products on the market.
What is a BBCOR Bat?
The term BBCOR stands for batted ball coefficient of restitution. It focuses on the “trampoline effect” that the bat has on the ball that it hits. In more scientific terms, this is the kinetic energy that is lost when the ball and the bat come in contact.
The maximum possible value that a BBCOR bat can achieve is 0.5, according to the National Collegiate Athletics Association. There are also some size requirements for BBCOR-certified bats. The bat’s diameter should exceed 2 5/8 inches and the length to weight ratio should be -3. The length of the bat should be 36 inches or lower.
Players that participate in games following NCAA standards should use a BBCOR bat. Some other divisions like Little League, PONY and Dixie may also have BBCOR bat requirements. The organization or division’s official website provides more information about the requirements and the types of bats players should use in order to participate in games.
Common Types of BBCOR Bats
Before moving on to examining other BBCOR bat purchasing considerations, it’s important to distinguish between the different types of equipment available on the market.
Currently, there are three common BBCOR bat varieties that you can choose among:
- Composite bats: composite bats have been around for a very long period of time but they’ve started gaining popularity over the past few years. In the 2000s, composite bats began getting made with a graphite-fiber material. In addition, an epoxy resin coating was added, enhancing the performance of the bat even further. These two improvements have led to a surge in popularity. According to some researchers, composite bats today can outperform aluminum alloy bats. A composite bat is lighter and it can enhance swing speed. One important thing to keep in mind is that a composite bat has to be “warmed up” prior to the start of the game.
- Aluminum alloy bats: these bats were first manufactured in the 1970s and ever since, they’ve been setting the standard in the world of BBCOR equipment. These bats are a lot more durable and long-lived than composite bats. Such bats get dented after minor damage, which means that they will still be usable. When lighter materials are used, the bat speed is enhanced. The trampoline effect that they produce allows the ball to travel faster than in the case of a composite bat being used. In addition, aluminum alloy bats tend to be less expensive than their composite counterparts.
- One-piece and two-piece bats: apart from choosing the material that you feel most comfortable with, you’ll also have to figure out whether to opt for a one-piece or a two-piece BBCOR bat. A one-piece bat can be made of both composite and aluminum alloy. It is stiff and relatively strong. The piece of equipment is best suited to the needs of power hitters because very little energy is lost through the contact between the ball and the bats feature a handle that is separate from the barrel of the bat. The two are bonded together and they’re usually made of different materials. It’s possible for the bat to feature a composite or an aluminum handle and a composite or aluminum barrel. Thus, four configurations are possible. A two-piece bat is characterized by a lighter swing weight and increased bat speed/power. The flex is possible entirely because of the two-piece design, regardless of the material being used.
Tips for Buying the Best BBCOR Bat
Several considerations are very important when purchasing a BBCOR bat. The first one to pay attention to is the size.
Keep in mind that BBCOR bats feature the same weight for the respective length. Thus, most sizing charts are based on the length of the bat in relationship to the player’s height in inches and weight in pounds.
Let’s do a simple experiment, let’s imagine that the player is 70 inches tall and weighs 150 pounds. The standard sizing for BBCOR bats in this instance would suggest that the right piece of equipment is 33 inches long.
Most BBCOR bat manufacturers have such sizing charts that can be used to determine the right length and weight of the bat. You can find such charts online and they’re also typically available in sports stores or websites.
Bat Lifespan Considerations
Buying a BBCOR bat could necessitate some investment, which is why most people are looking for a long-lived and durable piece. The bat lifespan is the next important criterion to examine when shopping for such items.
When it comes to longevity, a 7046 alloy is considered one of the best possibilities. The number refers to the standard aluminum alloy that is used in the overwhelming majority of aluminum bats. This is standard aircraft aluminum and it was the one typical for older bats. Today, there are also several alternative alloy possibilities that are recognized for their longevity.
C405/7055 refers to a bat that has increased zirconium content in the alloy. The added amount of zirconium boosts the strength of the bat. This bat was introduced approximately eight years ago and it quickly became a favorite because of the toughness and the excellent characteristics that the alloy came with.
Finally, bats made of cryogenically-treated aluminum should also be prioritized over other products on the market. These bats are made of a material that was cryogenically frozen and then heated. This thermal procedure increases the durability of the aluminum and it reduces vibrations by two to four percent. in addition, a cryogenically-treated aluminum bat is great for sending the ball to a bigger distance.
When doing research and examining different kinds of bats, always take a look at the number that refers to the alloy or the material that the bat is made of. Figuring out what the composition of the alloy is will provide you with important information about the stamina of the bat and the potential lifespan of the equipment.
The age of the player that will be using the BBCOR bat is another factor that will determine which models are suitable and which ones aren’t.
All high school and college players need a BBCOR-certified bat. Kids who are younger will need a bat that corresponds to the respective division’s requirements. As already mentioned in the preview, it’s possible for the respective division to have a BBCOR bat requirement, as well.
A general rule of thumb is that older and stronger players can use heavier bats and younger players should be given a lighter bad. There could be a few BBCOR certified options to pick among. It’s always a good idea to opt for a product that a child or a teen can test at least once. Having a kid holding the bat and swinging it is the best way to determine whether the piece of equipment is the right one.
It doesn’t make a lot of sense to invest in an expensive bat for a very young player. Differences in skills and abilities start becoming evident in the age range from 8 to 10 years. A 27-inch bat is among the smallest for such children but obviously, the height and the weight of the player will be determining for the selection.
Most variety is seen in the bats for children aged 11 and 12, as well as for teenagers. This is where things can get to be a bit confusing because of the height and weight differences, as well as because of the market diversity.
Some parents begin looking for more expensive, hi-end bats for players that are 11 or older, especially if the child shows promise in the field of basketball. Though it may be still too early to invest in an expensive bat, it is a good idea to begin looking for a higher quality at this age. A high-end BBCOR bat in the hands of a player that can swing at 40 miles per hour can produce significant improvements in performance.
Talking to a coach is a good idea when shopping for baseball equipment. A professional will let you know which bat variety will enhance your child’s performance even further and whether investing in expensive equipment is going to be a good idea.
Apart from all other considerations, you should pay attention to the price to quality ratio. It’s possible to buy a high quality BBCOR bat at an affordable price, especially if you’re willing to do the research and shop around prior to making a purchase.
January through April is the time of the year during which baseball bats tend to be most expensive. This is the period during which most games take place. Prices will go down from the end of May and into the summer months. If possible, wait for the purchase of a bat until that period. In this instance, you’ll get to enjoy top quality at a really affordable price.
It’s also possible to reduce the cost by buying an older model manufactured by the respective company. A 2016 model is going to be more expensive than a 2015 model. There may be some improvements but chances are that the 2015 BBCOR bat will still lead to performance gains. Thus, the decision is once again about budgetary considerations. You will not be sacrificing quality by opting for a piece that was released one or two years ago.
If the player that you’re buying for is comfortable with a one-piece aluminum bat, opt for this variety. Such bats are less expensive than their composite and two-piece counterparts. In addition, they are long-lived. As long as the player doesn’t outgrow the bat, it will be usable for years to come.
The final thing to remember is that quality shouldn’t be sacrificed for the sake of affordability. There are ways to bring down the price. Still, the quality of the bat and its characteristics are much more important than the price tag. Look for the best price to quality ratio rather than the most inexpensive piece. If you go for cheap, you may end up regretting the decision in the long run.
Popular BBCOR Bat Brands
Before going into our list of the best BBCOR bats on the market, let’s take a look at some of the best brands and what they have to offer:
- Easton: this is the first company to introduce the aluminum baseball bat to the market, thus revolutionizing the game. The first aluminum bat was presented in 1969 and even since, Easton has been working on improving the design and creating equipment that can enhance the performance of players. Easton is constantly working on innovations and one of the great improvements that the company presented in 2016 is the TORQ handle – a rotating handle that allows for a greater level of control.
- DeMarini: this is another incredibly popular brand and it dominates top BBCOR bat charts. The company was established in 1989 and the company is also focused on technological innovations. The improvements that DeMarini has introduced to its core designs have grown the popularity of the company and its products. When it comes to the company’s most popular products, the Voodoo series was an instant hit and it continues being in high demand today.
- Louisville Slugger: the final brand we’re going to outline in this section of the guise is Louisville Slugger. Today, the company is one of the largest bat manufacturers in the US but just like the other two brands mentioned, it had a humble beginning in a woodworking shop. The company’s bats have been favorites of some of the world’s most prominent players like Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. The company’s high-end line of BBCOR bats is called Prime and it’s the one you should be looking for if you’re interested in the best possible quality.
The Best 2017 BBCOR Bats
We’ve now come to the heart of the guide and it’s time to explore some of the BBCOR bats that will be a hit in 2017. These bats have been chosen for the excellent price to quality ratio, the durability and the additional features or technological innovations that they bring to the table.
This brand new bat by Mizuno features a patent-pending barrel design. The highly specific Mizuno barrel creates some additional spin to increase the hitting distance. This isn’t the only characteristic that the 2017 Mizuno Maxcor is being praised for.
A Hot Metal Aluminum Alloy Core called Cortech enables the adjustment of the wall thickness across the Maxcor barrel. The barrel to handle connection is a dynamic damper one, which means that its ability to absorb vibrations is enhanced.
Mizuno Maxcor 2017 is also known for the supra-helix bat grip, balanced swing weight and VP barrel sleeve. The bat is provided in a bazooka-style carrying case that increases convenience.
2017 Mizuno Maxcor is provided with a one-year manufacturer guarantee. Needless to say, the bat is BBCOR-certified and it corresponds to all of the size and length requirements.
This is the all-alloy bat by Mizuno and it will appeal to anyone interested in the highest level of bat control.
Just like Mizuno Maxcor 2017, the Mizuno Generations features the Cortech design that enables wall thickness adjustments across the barrel. This personalization options enables the creation of the best possible hitting area.
Mizuno Maxcor 2017 is also characterized by a one-piece bat construction, supra-helix grip, a balanced swing weight and improved bat control. The bat is available with a one-year manufacturer warranty.
According to some reviewers, this is one of the best BBCOR bats that so few people have ever heard of. Unlike the previous two entries in the list, this is a composite wood bat. As a result, it happens to be more expensive. There are a few characteristics that justify the additional expenditure on this item.
The bat features an ash wood exterior and a composite reinforcement surrounding core. The core itself is made of foamed plastic, which contributes to the lightness of the bat.
Just like all other BBCOR bats, this item is NCAA and NFHS approved. It is also approved for Minor League games. The incredibly balanced swing weight increases the level of control that all players (regardless of their age) are going to have over the bat.
This is another world patent pending product on the BBCOR bat market. The conditions used to manufacture the Baum corporate bats are similar to the ones required for the creation of advanced aerospace products. As a result, a Baum BBCOR bat can be expected to be incredibly long-lived and durable.
The Easton Mako Beast Youth Bat is BBCOR-certified and it’s advertised as the most powerful composite piece of equipment that Easton has even manufactured.
The extended speed barrel design will enable youth players send the ball far away. The bat features a brand new thermos-composite barrel that increases the power of the swing significantly. In addition, the bat is characterized by an ultra-thin handle made of composite wood. The HYPERSKIN grip reduces the risk of the handle slipping and twisting in the hands of the batter.
Easton Mako Beast comes with a two-piece ConneXion technology that enhances energy transfer. Finally, the bat has 1.15 BPF certification that makes it suitable for use by younger players.
This is another high-end, expensive BBCOR bat that’s worth examining and buying for a player that exhibits serious potential.
The massive barrel size is the first and the primary advantage of the bat. A X14 aluminum alloy barrel distributes weight evenly, which gives the player better control over the swing. The bat is also characterized by another interesting innovation – a D-Fusion 2.0 handle. The handle comes with a specialized connection to the barrel that reduces vibrations noticeably.
2017 DeMarini Voodoo Insane is also characterized by a hybrid design, low pro end cap, a RCK knob, end-loaded swing weight and an increased power potential. The RCK knob is required to make the handle fit better in the palm of the hand, which enhances the grip of the player.
The 2017 BBCOR bat by DeMarini is characterized by the big barrel sizing that creates a larger hit area. The Voodoo line of bats is considered one of the best options that DeMarini has to offer. Choosing one variety or the other will simply depend on individual preferences and batting style.
This specific item features X14 alloy and a D-Fusion 2.0 handle. The aluminum is stronger than many other alloys on the market, guaranteeing the lifespan of the item and justifying the investment in such a high-end bat.
A few of the most prominent technical specs include balanced swing weight, low pro end cap, RCK knob and a two-piece design. The item comes with a 12-month manufacturer warranty.
The 2017 AeroBurner by Adidas was just released in August 2016. The bat is already chosen as the option of preference by some of the most reputable collegiate teams throughout the US. Several characteristics determine its popularity.
Adidas AeroBurner features the company’s AeroBurner technology that guarantees the even distribution of weight. In addition, it has a BURNER alloy body, EQT grip tape, a one-piece construction and an affordable price in comparison to some of the other top entries in the list.
The Maxum range of bats by the company has made Combat a popular name in the world of baseball equipment. The 2017 edition of the brand’s most prominent BBCOR bat doesn’t disappoint. In fact, it brings several cool innovations to the table.
The bat has a 20 to 40 percent larger hitting surface in comparison to other similar BBCOR-certified pieces of equipment. Lizard skin grip enhances both comfort and control. Combat Maxum is also characterized by the lowest allowable BBCOR swing weight, a one-piece construction, a precision molding technology and a seamless construction.
2017 Combat Maxum is provided with a 500-day manufacturer warranty. Since it is one of the most expensive entries in the list, the guarantee will certainly give buyers some peace of mind.
As the name could hint, DeMarini CF Zenis a balanced BBCOR bat. It’s another expensive entry that’s best suited to the needs of players showing high potential on the field.
The DeMarini D-Fusion 2.0 handle technology is once again available in this bat to reduce vibration upon impact. The bat has a two-piece fully composite construction. It also features a low pro end cap and RCK knob.
The composite material used is worth describing in a separate paragraph. ParaFlex composite is a special material that DeMarini uses in its most innovative pieces of equipment. The composite increases strength by 22 percent due to the use of carbon fiber.
As far as expensive, high-end bats go, DeMarini CF Insane is yet another option to consider.
The bat comes with all of the expected technologies and features – the D-Fusion 2.0 handle, low pro end cap, RCK knob and ParaFlex composite material. Unlike the DeMarini CF Zen, this is an end-loaded swing weight bat.
The two-piece fully composite construction enhances control but it brings the price of the bat up.
2017 DeMarini CF Insane comes with a 12-month manufacturer warranty.
The 2017 Easton Z-Core Speed BBCOR bat is a limited edition item. Its most prominent feature is the Z-core technology. This internal barrel technology produces a bigger and longer sweet spot.
Easton Z-Core Speed is a one-piece BBCOR bat made from the company’s HMX Hyperlite Matrix aluminum alloy. Thus, Easton Z-Core Speed is lightweight, durable and exceptionally reasonably priced.
A few other product characteristics worth mentioning include a thin tapered handle, Hyperskin grip and balanced swing weight.
This is one of the most innovative members of the Easton BBCOR family of power performance bats. Easton Z-Core Hybrid features a barrel made of the Easton Hyperlite Matrix alloy and the Z-Core core technology. These two work alongside each other to produce a massive barrel.
A few other noteworthy characteristics of this monster of a bat include a two-piece hybrid composition, Hyperskin grip, the company’s patented ConneXion technology and a SIC black carbon handle. The material that the handle is made of and the design have both been selected in an attempt to minimize vibrations.
The name is pretty much self-explanatory – the 2017 Easton Z-Core XL is a one-piece alloy bat that features an extended barrel design.
The bat is particularly suitable for the needs of power batters, enabling them to send the ball unbelievably far away. The construction and the materials chosen have been picked for the purpose of adding mass and thus enhancing performance.
Just like other Easton BBCOR bats, this one features an array of innovative features. The most prominent ones include a thin tapered handle, end-loaded swing weight, Hyperlite Matrix, Z-Core and a Hyperskin grip.
As already mentioned, the Prime series is the one that put Louisville Slugger on the professional baseball map. The 2017 917 Prime doesn’t disappoint and it stays true to traditions (with a bit of a modern twist).
A huge extended barrel and light swing weight bring together the best of both worlds. Louisville Slugger 917 Prime is a three-piece composite bat that features MicroForm composite. It also comes with the company’s patented fused carbon structure for an optimal sweet spot.
A few other characteristics worth mentioning include custom lizard skin grip, a standard handle, TRU3 with dynamic socket connection and balanced swing weight.
Marucci CAT 7 has many of the characteristics that players have come to love in the CAT 5 and CAT 6 ranges. Still, the company has also introduced a few innovations to add value to the product.
The one-piece alloy construction bat comes with a balanced design and a more than reasonable price tag.
Several of the noteworthy characteristics include an AV2 knob that reduces vibrations, Marucci’s increased strength and stamina alloy, an optimized barrel design for a two times bigger sweet spot and a ring-free barrel technology.
Unlike the previous entry in the list, the 2017 Marucci CAT 7 Connect is a two-piece hybrid BBCOR bat.
It’s characterized by the company’s shock dissipating connection that reduces vibrations and enhances control over the bat.
Marucci CAT 7 Connect also features a carbon composite handle that is lightweight and easy to grip, AZ4X alloy for added strength and a higher response rate, power-balanced design, and ring-free barrel technology.
Rawlings Quatro is known for three things – performance, balance and flex. It’s also great for power batters that are interested in maximizing the ball distance.
The balanced swing weight bat is made of composite – the first ever for Rawlings BBCOR bats. The material is 100 percent carbon fiber for lightness and enhanced precision.
Several characteristics worth mentioning include balanced swing weight, quarto collar that absorbs shock, Tru-View technology, ultimate flex and vibration dampening technology.
When it comes to affordable bats that are still equipped with innovative technologies, this option is the one to try. Rawlings 5150 is an ultra-responsive one-piece alloy bat.
Some of the features that make the bat worth including among the best picks for 2017 include aerospace-grade alloy for enhanced durability, precision-optimized performance technology for a larger sweet spot, ultra-responsive Rawlings design and a balanced swing weight.
The final entry in the list belongs to the VELO range – the one considered to be the lightest and fastest when it comes to BBCOR bats.
Rawlings VELO is a one-piece alloy construction BBCOR bat that is fiber reinforced. All of the unnecessary weight has been removed from the bat because of the innovative streamlined design.