If you have a young hitter in the family who loves their baseball and may even have aspirations of turning it into a profession, then you want them to have one of the best youth baseball bats available in 2020. If you’re wondering how that 10 year old kid at the baseball park on a Saturday morning is sending the ball soaring through the air, then wonder no more.
The best youth players are all using some of the best youth bats on the market. Here’s how to get one for yourself; or, if you’re a proud parent, your MLB star in the making!
Youth Baseball & How Your Kid Can Play
If your kid wants to play baseball, you need to sign him up with your local youth baseball league. If you’re in the United States, you have a choice over different leagues, such as Little League, Pony Baseball, Cal Ripken, or any other affiliated or independent league. Other countries may have different leagues.
Each league is governed according to a specific set of rules that may alter the baseball game. For instance, the distance from the pitcher’s mound to the home plate and the distance between bases may be different across various leagues. Moreover, some leagues do not allow stealing of bases at all, while others allow it after the ball is caught by the catcher.
Other independent leagues allow stealing in the same manner as in adult baseball. It is very important that you familiarise yourself with the rules of each league before your kid joins. This set of rules may or may not apply to what kind of bat you are allowed to play with – more on this aspect below.
Once you’ve made your choice, the next step is to equip your junior hitter with appropriate baseball gear, including gloves, helmet, cleats, and obviously one of the best youth baseball bats that enables your kid to hit the ball out of the park. After all, that is every hitter’s dream.
Best Youth Baseball Bats: How To Choose One?
A lot goes into picking a baseball bat. It requires assessment of not only the bat itself, but the player too. Different players will require different variations of baseball bat when it comes to length, width, weight, material and so forth. It can be confusing and daunting, but the perfect bat is out there waiting for you.
To get the most out of the bat for a young player, they need to feel comfortable with it. You may end up buying 2 or 3 baseball bats before they can truly feel at ease with their ‘weapon of choice’. Let’s go through each variation and help you find the right one:
Weight and Length
The weight and length of the bat is a crucial element; the taller the player, the longer the bat they will require. The stronger the player, the heavier they will want the bat to be.
If you buy a bat that is too heavy, not only will your kid feel really uncomfortable while playing, but his hits will be mediocre at best due to low swing speed. A good rule of thumb is to look for bats that weigh anywhere between 2.5 and 5 pounds.
A bat’s length is often compared to how heavy it is. This is done by subtracting the weight of the bat from the length. For example, a bat that is 27 inches long and weighs 15 ounces would be considered a “-12” bat.
A good way to judge this is to rest the head of the bat on the ground; the knob of the bat handle should rest easily in the player’s palm. The more easily it does this, the more suitable the length of the bat is. If you can get this right, you’re well on your way to finding one of the best youth baseball bats for your youngster.
A longer bat translates into greater reach, which means that hitting balls gets much easier. However, the longer the bat is, the heavier it gets, so this brings us to the weight issue again.
Since you’re looking for a bat for your kid, our advice is to find the one that offers an optimal combination of length and weight that will help him reach peak performance.
If you want a youth baseball bat, you’re obviously heading for a youth league; youth leagues generally require you to have a metal bat. Metal bats come in two forms – one-piece and two-piece. One-piece bats are made from one type of metal, whereas two-piece bats are made from two types; one for the barrel of the bat, and one for the handle. One-piece bats are generally more suited to the harder hitter because there is less give.
Two-piece bats are a little more flexible which makes it more favourable to hitters who generate less power. Two-piece bats can possibly come in different forms; the barrel of the bat can sometimes be produced from composite materials, which produces a bigger sweet spot. A larger sweet spot means more power, which makes composite two-piece bats popular with power hitters.
If your kid is 12 or under, he should use a 2 ¼’’ barrel. This is the standard barrel size in youth bats for most leagues out there, including Little League and Dixie Youth. Other independent leagues prefer 2 ¾ ‘’ barrels, but not higher.
In general, baseball bats are made of one or more of the following materials: aluminum, composite, alloy, or hybrid. Aluminum bats are lightweight and relatively durable. Composite and alloy bats are far more durable, but also heavier. Hybrid bats are a combination of alloy and composite.
We recommend sticking to aluminum-based bats due to the added lightweight benefit. If you prefer durability over flexibility, you can opt for composite and/or alloy-based bats.
As we pointed out in the first part of our article, each league plays by its own rules. Even if you stumble across the perfect bat in the market, always check with your local league’s requirements before buying it. This will save you a lot of money and hassle.
Top 5 Best Youth Baseball Bats
Now that you have a rough idea of what sort of bat you may be looking for, it’s time to take a closer look at what we consider to be the top 10 best youth baseball bats on the market in 2020.
The most popular and best quality brands currently on the baseball bat market, particularly for youth players, are Easton, Rawlings and DeMarini. If you choose a bat below from one of these brands, you’re getting your money’s worth.
We know how hard it is to make a final choice despite being well informed. There is just so much to choose from. Don’t worry, we’re one step ahead of you on this one! Without further ado, let’s see what our exclusive selection of youth baseball bats is:
Easton 2018 Beast X
Easton 2019 Ghost X Hyperlite
DeMarini 2019 Sabotage
Rawlings 2019 5150
Easton 2019 Beast Speed Hybrid
There are a lot of choices here and a lot of information to take in we know, but it’s important to get the bat that’s right. Every bat has its own benefits, but if I was to choose one for my kid to take on the youth leagues with, it would be the Easton 2019 Ghost X Hyperlite. It is without doubt one of the best youth baseball bats on the market.
Make sure you check with your youth league as to what bats are permitted and which are not. Some youth leagues may permit wooden bats, in which case it could be a good idea to check out the best wood bats on offer as well.
Your youth league may require a BBCOR certified bat; in which case, you want to check out the best BBCOR bats available. We also have a complete round up article of our top 10 best baseball bats which include some youth options.
We hope this has been of tremendous help for you and especially your kid. After all, he’ll be the one whom everyone relies on in the game. Some bats that we reviewed are best suited for training or tee ball and not necessarily for usual baseball games, but we made sure to mention that. Everything has been fully covered for your convenience. Good luck!