4 Best Youth Baseball Bats
Based on popularity, the best youth baseball bat is DeMarini’s 2019 CF Zen. This bat works well for both big barrel (2 3/4) as well as the new USA standard. Granted, those two bats have serious performance differences. But, in terms of popularity overall, the CF Zen is the top rated little league bat on the market today.
4 Best Youth Baseball Bat
|USA Bat||618 Solo||5/5||$$$|
|Big Barrel||CF Zen||5/5||$$$$|
|Power Hitter||Ghost X Drop 5||5/5||$$$$|
Where to Buy the Best Youth Bat
Although dozens of vendors are vying for your dollars, the best place to buy baseball bats continues to be eBay. All you need to do is make sure you can find it from legitimate sellers on the platform. This is common enough, but you’ll need to make sure. Often, we can save a few dollars if not a lot.
eBay is the wild west of bat sellers and price pressure is always downward in the auction market. Look, especially, during the months of July to October for real great deals as bat vendors unload their inventory and don’t want to do it on their site. Here’s a good search to price check the DeMarini 2019 CF Zen.
Best USA Bat
Make sure you know the league you are playing in. If, for example, your league requires the USA Bat then make sure to get a bat with that stamp. USA Bats perform way different then bats with the USSSA stamp so you don’t want to be in a USSSA league with a bat that performs with considerable less pop.
If you are in a USA league then we really like the CF Zen (and the 618 Solo below). The bats have great balance to them (they swing light) and big barrels. The Zen feels great off the barrel. Although you will never quite get as much gumption from a USA Bat that you get from a USSSA bat the CF Zen is about as good as you’ll get in the youth market.
Best VALUE Youth Bat
If you are measuring the top rated youth baseball bat on overall value, then the 618 Solo from Louisville Slugger takes the top spot. The bat has a very light and welcome swing in the USA version (it is a true drop 11). It also comes in a number of sizes in the “big barrel” (USSSA) space.
Users loved the big barrel and light swing. Parents loved the more reasonable price point.
Best Cheap Youth Bat
The Rawlings Prodigy comes in a number of sizes and very cheap too. At least when compared to other performance little league baseball bats in the space, the Rawlings Prodigy is inexpensive.
All reviews we have read on the Rawlings Prodigy are positive. These bat does what it is supposed to do. That is, it hits baseballs.
Of course there could be more frills on the bat. The bat does hurt on mishits, the barrel could be bigger, and the paint job is average on a good day. But, the hits on the sweet spot feel real good and the swing weight (balance) is right where most players want it: Light.
Best Youth Bat by Age
The best bat for a young player really varies by the type of player. Serious hitters and those who play a lot of baseball have different needs than those who play only a few games. As does a power hitter when compared to an end of the lineup kind of kid. So, we help give some insight into the different types of bats that might work by age in the following sections determining the best bat by age.
Best Bat for 8 Year Old
The CAT 7 in a Junior Big Barrel is a legitimate choice for the growing 8 year old ball player. The bat has a huge barrel and sounds great on contact. Kids love the loud sound, awesome grip and great look. Marucci has done a great job with this Junior Big Barrel version of the CAT (that also comes in BBCOR).
The JBB CAT 7 is a drop 10 bat that comes in very short sizes. Look for a 25/15 or 26/16. (If you’re real new to this, the 25/15 means a 25 inch bat with a 15 ounce weight).
Best Bat for 9 Year Old
A great option for a growing 9 year old is the Composite Rawlings Velo. Although the VELO is considered an aluminum bat in the USSSA and BBCOR space, Rawlings also makes a drop 12 composite version that is made of two pieces. It has a remarkably light swing and is made for the young hitter. Expect the top of the lineup to use this bat, or the kid who needs as much help finding the ball as possible.
Most 9 year olds, assuming they are the average size, need an 17 to 19 ounce bat. As the Rawlings VELO is a drop 12, look for this bat in a 29 to 31 inch length.
Best Bat for 10 Year Old
The CF Zen drop 10 for 2019 really hits its stride for the 10 year old. Players love the feel, sound and big barrel. It is helpful that this bat has been banned more than once (at least earlier versions have been). Serious players in the big barrel and USSSA space absolutlye love the CF Zen. And, for 10 year olds looking for the perfect drop 10, there really isn’t another option that compares.
The sweet spot for the 10 year old is a 21 or 22 ounce bat. In the drop 10 that means they should be swinging a 31/21 or a 32/22.
Best Bat for 11 Year Old
If they are growing at a normal rate (and what 11 year old is) then the drop 8 CF Zen is a great choice and the best bat for little league. The bat swings like a champ and any kid who uses the drop 8 CF Zen will tell you it has changed his game for the better. A massive sweet spot, great balance and an unmatched reputation all make the bat a big, big deal.
From 21 to 24 ounces is where most 11 year olds need to be size-wise in their bats. Granted, some bats swing different due to the distribution of the weight along the barrel. But, still, we suggest most 11 year olds between a 29 and 32 inch drop 8.
If you are considering a 29/21 we would push you towards the 31/21 in a drop 10 and save the drop 8 until they are 12 or 13 years old.
Best Youth Power Hitting Bat
The 2016 DeMarini CF8 remains the undisputed champion. Although this bat is hard to find these days. Check, of course, ebay for your best bet. Otherwise, look for the 2017 or 2018 version of this bat. It is an absolute ball killer. Although the Voodoo Raw also produces a crazy amount of power, where I believe the CF8 wins it over is in the bat speed department. The end-load that the Voodoo Raw can be a detriment to the swing weight of the bat by shifting the momentum towards the barrel, which also makes it harder to control, but nevertheless it’s a phenomenal bat.
If you’re a person who enjoys end-loads then by all means go with the Voodoo Raw, but if you’re a fan of bat speed – go with the CF8. You really can’t go wrong with either, however, my personal preference is bat speed so we chose to go with the CF8 in this category.
Youth Bat Size Chart
There are so many ways to determine the right bat size. We found this chart from BatDigest.com and it does a pretty good job of suggesting the right size based on a formula of age/height and bat ounces. You can see more of these charts here, here and here.