This holiday season kids will rip open their gifts in the hopes of finding gifts they truly desire. They might really be hoping for the latest video game or craving the hot Lego Star Wars collection. One thing is for certain, if you have a baseball or softball player in the house a new bat can leave a lasting impact.
An investment in a new bat, is in investment in your child. A sign that you believe in their passion. That you are committed to their success. One of the best moments to watch is not only their eyes when they unwrap the bat for the first time, but also that moment when they take their new prized possession to the plate. It is a gift that will last for more than the 15 minutes of excitement that most other gifts do.
But Do You Have to Spend $400+ Dollars on this Years Latest Bat?
First, we need to ask if the latest and greatest is in fact a better bat than the previous years’ bat. To do that we need to make sure we are comparing apples to apples. Are both bats full Composite, full alloy or a mix? Are the bats 1 piece, 2 piece or even 3 piece? As long as we are comparing apples to apples, the straight up answer is the latest and greatest bat is probably NOT much better than the previous year’s bat. What might change is a small tweak and a new paint job.
The manufacturer can make the claim that they’ve improved something, upgraded this, tweaked that, but if the ball doesn’t go further, I do not believe the latest and greatest is better and you can save considerably by buying last year’s model if you can get it. One of my friend’s likes to say “don’t swing a $500 bat when you have a 50 cent swing.” In other words, a good hitter can hit a ball well with a $29 bat just as well as with a $500 bat. Maybe with perfectly identical swings it may go a few feet further.
The Pros to Buying Last Year’s Model:
A. Incredible value, that will be easier on your wallet.
B. Still has awesome performance.
C. Still carries a 1 year manufacturer’s warranty.
D. 1 season worth of feedback on the performance of that specific bat. What other players liked or disliked.
E. More cash in your wallet to do something else with.
The Downside to Getting Last Year’s Model:
I believe there are no cons in buying last year’s bat other than if you’re caught up in buying the latest and greatest. If that’s the case, you’re not keeping up with the neighbors. You would be better off spending the difference on lessons, a Diamond Kinetics SwingTracker (use coupon code “tewks” to save $10) or athletic training to improve your child’s swing.
All that being said, it doesn’t mean the bat manufacturer’s aren’t innovating and improving their bats. Just take a look at one of the latest Easton Mako Torq bat which features a rotating wrist piece. When it was first released in 2015 it retailed for around $350 on Amazon. Today you can find that same 2015 model on Amazon for $139.95 but you can get the 2016 Easton Mako Torq for $129.95. This year Easton is hoping the Mako Beast will be the most popular bat, with the price tag to prove it.
According to JustBatReviews:
Last years model may be a different type of bat. Turns out, just because it shares the same type of name, doesn’t also mean it is the exact the same bat. The 2016 Rawlings 5150 is considerably different then the 2017 Rawlings 5150. Finding the actual differences are not simple either. If only there were a bat blog made by some bat obsessed father to keep track of all those changes. If only…
As I said earlier, make sure you are comparing apples to apples and you will get yourself a great deal.
What are the hot bats for 2017?
Little League 2-1/4 Barrel baseball bats
TOP YOUTH BIG BARREL baseball bats
BBCOR HighSchool and College baseball bats
Looking to Save Money on a Baseball/Softball Bat?
Here is the hot list for older models to keep an eye on for great deals (you do know we publish these great baseball deals from around the web every week? There will be deals on these bats ranging from $39.95 to $219.95 on the bats below. Make sure to subscribe to find your best deal —>) :
Fastpitch Softball Bats
Little League Baseball Bats
Easton Mako Youth Bat -11oz (2016)
Easton S1 Youth Bat -12oz (2015)
Combat Maxum Youth Bat -12oz (2016)
Combat Maxum Youth Bat -10oz (2016)
Easton S3Z BBCOR Bat -3oz (2015) – 33in Only
Youth Big Barrel or Senior League Bats
DeMarini NVS Vexxum Big Barrel Bat 2-5/8″ Barrel -10oz (2016)
Combat Maxum Big Barrel Bat -12oz SL7MX112 (2017)
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