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Baseball

Best Softball Bat

Looking for a new bat for your next softball season? Whether you play fatspitch or slowpitch, youth or adult, competitive or beer league; you still want to get the best value for your money. Whether you spend $400 or $100, you want to get the most performance for the price.

There are many factors to consider when purchasing a bat. Not all softball bats are created equal. There are many different types of bats, from composite to one-piece, from balanced to end-loaded, from basic aluminum alloy to space-age materials. One $400 bat is not necessarily better than the other $400 bat, nor is a $400 bat always the right choice over a $100 bat. It is a fact that a $400 bat is built with more innovative materials and is a higher performance bat, but you may not want or need all that performance. Or, you may not be able to afford the price unless you pilfer the kids' college funds. If you play in a highly competitive league, whether youth or adult, most players will have bats costing over $200, with many having $400 bats. If you play in a Wednesday night beer league, most of that $400 would better be spent on, well, beer.

When choosing a bat, the first thing to do is to decide on your budget. If you are loaded and the dreadful economy hasn't gutted your bank account, by all means go ahead and spend the big bucks on a bat. However, if you have to choose between food on the table or a high-priced bat, go ahead and choose one in the $100 - $150 range. There are still decent bats in this price range. You can find many good bats in the $199 - $299 range and this is often the most popular price range as you get a good performing bad for an affordable price. Most bats in the $100 range are made with basic aluminum alloy, and though they are solid bats, don't offer the performance or durability as higher priced bats. Generally, the best bats are found online. Your local sporting goods store usually doesn't stock too many high-end bats.

The second thing you need to do is to figure out what level league in which you play. If you play competitive softball, you will probably want to spend as much as you can afford. Most players in competitive leagues take their bats seriously and spend money accordingly. If a budget is of no concern, then get the highest priced bat on the market. However, if you are like most of us and money doesn't grow on trees, then doing your research to find the right type bat for you at the right price is mandatory.

The third thing you need to do is make sure the bat you want is approved for play in your league. There are approximately 20 different governing bodies in the softball world, but there are five main ones – Amateur Softball Association (ASA), United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA), National Softball Association (NSA), Independent Softball Association (ISA), and the International Softball Federation (ISF). Though the rules of these governing bodies are similar, there are differences, and though many bats are approved for play in all leagues, some are not. It is important to check to see if the bat you want is approved for play in your league.

To help you with your purchase, we have compiled a few lists of the bests softball bats on the market. Figure out what you want, check out the lists, buy your bat, and start swinging for the fences.

Miken Velocite-E ASA Slowpitch Bat

The Miken MSVA Velkocit-E is a great bat for entry-level players or for those who want to maximize performance without spending as much as their mortgage payment. It is definitely not cheap, but for around $199, you get a high performance bat without the super-high price tag. It is a one-piece design made with Z700 carbon fiber, which is rated 29% stronger than the industry standard carbon fiber. The multi-layer wall technology helps provides durability and pop. The DST technology (Durashell Technology) acts as a composite shield on the outer shell of the bat which helps to maximum the performance and make it ready to go. Miken claims this bat is ready to go right out of the wrapper, but you may experience a break-in period – just make certain to have an extended hitting practice session before you use in a game, and you'll be ready to go. For the price, this bat will provide near top-quality for half the price. That's why it is the top bat on this budget-conscious list.

Worth Sinister Lithium Slowpitch Bat

The Worth Sinister Lithium is low-priced bat that offers good performance and pop for the price. It's a multi-wall aluminum bat that has an extended barrel to make a huge sweet spot. It has a thinner taper design, which makes it lighter and will increase your bat speed. It is also made with TST (thinner shell technology) which uses high strength alloys for a superior trampoline effect. Combine the trampoline effect with an end-load and you get great power for a bat priced around $100. The bat is approved for use in all associations and is a great choice for the budget-conscious batter who still wants to swing for the fences.

DeMarini Steel Slowpitch Bat

Forget all those space-age materials, what you really want is steel! The DeMarini Steel bat is made of steel- ultra-thin steel. It has a single wall steel barrel, a C6 composite handle, and an N2M end cap. It is end loaded for maximum power and delivers awesome pop whether the ball is soft and squishy or the weather is approaching 100 degrees. The C6 composite handle has a wide weave which means it maximum flex and superior performance. It is approved for play in most leagues and uses the strength and weight of steel to have you swinging for the fences. For around $190, you get the power of steel and the performance of DeMarini.

Easton Salvo Scandium Slowpitch Bat

The Easton Salvo Scandium slowpitch bat comes with a slightly end-loaded barrel for maximum power. It is made with THT100 scandium alloy for increased durability and a larger sweet spot. The THT100 alloy offers high tensile strength and is resistant to dents and cracks. It comes with an ulta-thin handle and a comfortable grip for better performance and control. It meets all performance standards and is approved for play in most leagues. For around $179, you get a solid, durable, and high performing bat that will have you hitting line drives all over the park.

Mizuno Craze Slowpitch Bat

The Mizuno Craze is made with Black Array carbon, improved glass fibers, and 5% more resin than previous Mizuno models. It also comes with a Digi-Grip wrap for improved comfort and feel, and has a 13 inch balanced barrel for superior control and pop. The bat is sold without warranty, so know that before you buy. The bat is approved for many leagues, but at last check, it has not been approved for ASA play. For around $150, this bat provides great performance and value for a very reasonable price.

Miken Freak FX 700 ASA Maxload Slowpitch Bat

The Miken Freak FX700 is a composite bat that is ready to slam softballs all over the field out of the wrapper. Miken shortened the barrel, so the sweet spot is pushed toward the end of the bat resulting in consistent fence-crashing power. The Freak is a balanced bat that using proprietary HBF technology, which means that the multi-layer walls are fully released (the bat is ready to hit as soon as you take it out of the box). The aerospace-grade R900 carbon fiber has higher tensile strength than most bats, which means it hits farther and lasts longer. It also comes with a precisely calibrated flex handle, a 20% larger sweet spot than previous models, and a one-year warranty. Though it is end-loaded for maximum power, it still has a balanced feel. For around $230, the Freak will provide incredible pop, superior durability, and is a crowd-pleaser right out of the box and the top choice on the list of best ASA Slowpitch bats.

Rip-It Reaper 2012 Softball Bat

Rip-It Reaper 2012 Softball Bat

The Rip-It Reaper is another bat you can take out of the wrapper and immediately begin sending frozen ropes all over the outfield. It comes with a comfortable grip (raised ridge memory foam), has minimal vibration, and is slightly end-loaded for maximum hitting power. It is constructed from a single piece of ballistic aluminum and is stronger and more durable than composite. It comes with a full twelve-month warranty and with Rip-It's exclusive “love it or return it” guarantee. If you don't like the bat for any reason at all within 30 days, just send it back with no questions asked, for a full refund. It is approved for play is most leagues and will definitely elevate your game to a new, awesome, fence-shattering level! For around $250. this is a deal you shouldn't pass up!

Easton SSR4 Stealth Speed Xl Slowpitch Softball Bat

Easton Stealth has been a popular name for all types of bats for several years and this one lives up to its much-deserved reputation. It is made with an IMX (Integrated matrix) composite barrel and Easton's patented two-piece ConneXion technology. The IMX technology strengthens the bat for durability and maximum performance while the ConneXion technology increases energy transfer and helps to eliminate vibration. It is slightly end-loaded for more fence-blasting power, has an ultra-thin tapered handle, and a comfortable cushioned grip. It has a large sweet spot and a balanced feel. It is approved for play in ASA leagues and most others. For around $240, you get a bat that has proven to be a consistent winner over the past few years.

DeMarini The One Sunday Swagger Slowpitch Softball Bat

DeMarini The One Sunday Swagger Slowpitch Softball Bat

The DeMarini The One Sunday Swagger is appropriately named because when you hit with it in your Sunday leagues, you be walking up to the plate with a swagger because you know how awesome this bat hits. It is a two piece design but it has the powerful stiffness of a one-piece bat. The composite barrel and the stiffness help to transfer energy to the ball and send it flying past the fielders. It comes with a one-year warranty and is approved for play in ASA and most other leagues. As Demarini claims, “we've done our part, now do yours!” Go out and do you part by buying this bat and then put some swagger into your softball play. For around $300, you'll get plenty of swagger!

Worth Slowpitch 2012 BJ Fulk Mayhem ASA Bat

The Worth 2012 BJ Faulk Mayhem ASA bat is made with a 100% composite barrel and a 98 MPH composite core that is designed to offer maximum rebound effect and superior durability. It has a balanced loading for a smooth swing and exceptional bat control. It has a soft-touch grip for a comfortable feel and maximum vibration reduction. It has a large sweet spot and is approved for play in ASA and all other softball associations. For around $200, it's a great batter for all types of hitters. You don't have to be a power hitter to enjoy this bat!

SSK 33" PS100 Wood Fungo Bat

The SSK 33in wood fungo bat is made from top-quality Japanese ash. It is balanced and lightweight for ease of use. It works best for infield, but has enough pop to get the job done on outfield fly balls. It excels at infield practice, both indoors and outdoors. Because it is relatively short and very light, placement and control are easy – put the ground balls in the exact spot you want and make the fielders really work! You can choke up and work one-handed for even better control on infield grounders. They come in a variety of different colors, so matching your team colors is no problem. The one downside is, like most wood bats, there is no warranty. You break it, you can use it for firewood, but most reviewers report that it is very durable and should last for a long time with proper use. For around $60, and because it's used by some major league teams, this is the top choice for a fungo bat.

Accubat Fungo Racquet

If you are the kind of coach that likes to have all the fancy gadgets and new training aids, here is one for you. It's a fungo bat, it's a tennis racquet; it's a unique training aid that can help you give a good fielding workout to your team. You can use it to hit fly balls to outfielders and ground balls to infielders. You can hit fly balls with a very high trajectory, and for some people, it is easier to hit infield fly balls with this racquet than with a bat. It does take some getting used to, as the hitting surface and angle is different and it doesn't hit as far as a fungo bat. However, you can hit thousands of balls with it and it won't wear out like a bat does. Once you get the hang of it, control is actually better than a regular fungo bat. I know many coaches have problems hitting that perfect pop up for their catchers – this device makes it easy! For around $60, it's something different and it works!

Rawlings Big Stick Wood Fungo Bat

From one of the top names in the industry comes this great fungo bat. The Rawlings Big Stick Wood Fungo bat is 35 inches in length and comes with a hollow barrel to make it extra-lightweight. It is the perfect practice tool for hitting perfectly placed ground balls and high outfield fly balls. You can really make your fielders work with this great fungo. It is made from northern white ash and provides a solid feel and excellent durability. It has an end weight design that helps build momentum as you swing to make it easier to hit towering fly balls. For around $30, this is a great deal on a superior product that should last several seasons.

Easton MLF3 Maple Fungo Bat

The Easton MLF3 Maple Fungo Bat comes from one of the leaders in the industry and delivers in performance and durability. It is made from durable professional grade maple and will undoubtedly last for several seasons. It is long and solid and will help even the oldest of coaches to hit towering fly balls to make their outfielders work. For around $50, it's a good price for a practice tool that will help make your team better. Put the ball exactly where you want with this fungo – your players will think you're a magician.

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BATS Rawlings Aluminum Fungo Baseball Bats CF3 35/21 OZ

This is the only aluminum fungo bat on the list – many coaches are old school and prefer wood, but if you want an aluminum fungo bat, this is a great one to get. It is ulta-lighweight at 21 ounces and is 35 inches long. It has a 10 inch hitting surface to help you hit the ball square every time. It comes with a premium synthetic leather grip so the bat won't fly out of your hands when you're trying to smack the ball to your outfielders. It's a durable bat that will give your team hours and hours of fielding practice. For around $50, this bat offers sure and steady performance and impressive durability. If you decide you don't want wood, this is the bat for you.

Rip-It Force Bat

Rip-It is becoming a force to be reckoned with, with its top quality baseball and softball bats; they are great products that produce great results. The Rip-It Force uses new Beyond Composite Technology that feels and hits like a composite bat but is made of an innovative proprietary alloy designed by RIP-IT. The bat also uses a new fused end-cap design that is 500% stronger and creates an extended sweet spot along the entire length of the barrel for an awesome amount of solid hitting surface. The Rip-It sells for around $225 and is ready to swing for the fences right out of the wrapper, as it has virtually no break-in period. It also comes with a vibration dampening grip and vibration dampening micro-layer. Rip-It is so sure you will love their bat that it has a 30-day “Try it” program - if you don’t like it within a month, just send it back for a full refund with no questions asked. It also comes with a 12-month warranty. You have absolutely nothing to lose...and a better batting average and slugging percentage to gain. It is approved by every organization - ASA, USSSA, NSA, ISA, High School, and NCAA. Its huge sweet spot, minimal vibration, fence crashing power, and a comfortable grip make it the top fastpitch bat on the market today.

Mizuno Frenzy 3.0 Fastpitch Bat

The Mizuno Frenzy 3.0 fast-pitch bat is used by many of the top college teams across the country. The Frenzy is made with Black Onyx Carbon, a superior carbon fiber that is used to make Boeing 787 Dreamliner jets. You get space-age technology, superior durability, maximum hitting power, and minimal vibration. Though it is a single-wall bat, the single wall is comprised of three different types of materials that provide extra strength and an extremely large sweet spot. It sells for around $180 and comes in -8 and -10 drops. It also comes with Mizuno's cushioned grip to reduce strain on your hands and wrists. Because it has a large sweet spot and a balanced feel, this is the perfect bat for those who want to hit with consistent power to all fields and gain confidence at the plate. The Frenzy is approved for ASA, USSSA, NSA, and ISA play.

DeMarini CF5 Fatspitch Bat

The Demarini CF5 comes form one of the top names in the baseball/softball bat industry. It is made with a TriStrut TR3 composite barrel; I would explain it to you, but it involves too much geometry and space-age science for me to understand. All you need to know is that it has awesome power! It is made will two walls that create an incredible springboard effect to send the ball flying toward the fences. It also comes with a dual-density end cap that helps to maintain the barrel stiffness while reducing vibration to minimal levels. It is a -11 drop so swing speed will be superior due to its light weight. At close to $300, it isn't cheap, but you get what you pay for...and with this bat, you get plenty of pop and an awesome bat.

Miken Freak FX700 Fastpitch Bat

The Miken Freak FX700 is a multi-wall bat that is ready to swing for the fences right out of the wrapper. It is made with advanced inner flex technology that precisely calibrates handle flex and energy transfer. What all that means is that the barrel flexes just the right amount to create the perfect rebound to smack the ball as hard as possible! The Freak's R900 carbon fiber nearly 40% higher tensile strength than most bats. This bat has serious pop and is as durable as any on the market. With a large sweet spot, superior flex technology, and a lack of a break-in period, this is one great fastpitch bat. For around $200, you'll be well-armed to face any pitcher.

Louisville Slugger 2012 TPS Mendoza Fastpitch Softball Bat

Though the Louisville Slugger 2012 TPS Mendoza Fastpitch bat is reasonably priced bat, it still will provide innovative technology and some serious pop. It features multiple layers of aerospace grade graphite and glass fibers which are embedded in a specially designed epoxy resin. This is called the C1C Composite Design. It is also made with an exclusive computer-designed pattern that positions the precise angle of each layer for optimum performance and increased durability – if I had paid attention in science class, I might know what it all means. All you need to know is that it is a one-piece, all-composite design that has good pop, a solid sweet spot and is great for intermediate players. Even though the investment is less than with some of the top bats (around $100), this is a solid bat with good pop and consistent performance.

Easton MAKO Composite TB15MK

When considering tee ball bats, the Easton MAKO one bat often stands out for its ultra-thin build designed for speed and faster swings. This bat has a composite handle, rolled aluminum end, and a cushioned grip for better comfort and control. At a drop -13.5, the Mako is specifically designed for low moment-of-inertia (MOI), meaning the weight of the bat feels lighter during the swing than when holding the bat still, thus giving players a faster bat swing speed. When it comes to quality and speed, this affordable tee ball bat leads the field.

Combat Portent Tee Ball Bat

The COMBAT Portent PORTB1 features Variable Stiffness Technology for less barrel wall stiffness which provides players with an enlarged sweet spot. This feature reduces vibrations to a minimum during the actual hit and coupled with the bats larger hitting area, provides players the extra edge they need every time they’re at bat. Since inexperienced players often roughhouse with bats off the field by striking materials which can damage a bat, the Portent is a one-piece composite construction, offering maximum durability. Overall, young players will experience great pop when using this bat and it’s one of the lightest tee ball bats on the market.

Easton YB15S3 S3 ALUM -13 Youth Baseball Bat

It is no mistake Easton bats have made our top list three times since this manufacturer offers all around great options for different players. The S3 is a one-piece design manufactured with durable HMX Hyperlite Matrix aluminum alloy, remaining lightweight to hold and swing while delivering plenty of striking power. This bat can also help inexperienced players increase their swing speed with its low moment-of-inertia (MOI) design for a lighter perceived feel during the swing. With the S3’s ultra light drop -13 rating, no wonder it’s a favorite among many young players.

DeMarini Uprising -12 Little League Bat

The Demarini Uprising features a balanced, one-piece construction using the specialized DX1 aluminum alloy for strong, long-lasting performance. At a drop -11, the Uprising is another lightweight bat perfect for use by young players still developing their accuracy and arm strength. The lightweight alloy design allows even the smallest and youngest players to swing it with ease while still delivering great pop. With its comfortable hybrid performance grip rounding things out, this bat is a perfect balance of comfort and weight for inexperienced players.

Easton 2015 YB15X3 XL3 ALUM -11 Youth Baseball Bat

The Easton XL3 is one of the heavy hitters in the tee ball category, featuring dual construction with a composite handle and durable aluminum alloy barrel. This is a drop -10, making it a slightly heavier bat designed for use by larger, more experienced tee ball players; the increased bat length may make the bat a bit unwieldy for use by smaller players. While some of our other selections focus on lightness and quick swing, the XL3 has an extra-long barrel for an extended hitting zone. If the player has the strength, size, or a more sophisticated swing, will definitely send the ball flying with this bat.

Fred Phillips
Over the years, I became an expert on sporting goods. How did I become an expert? From many years of use - both for myself and for my kids. I have done countless hours of research, purchased many products - both good and bad, and have used various types of equipment. Having kids who like sports, the water, and the outdoors, will force you to learn many new things. Now I can offer my help to others who are looking for good products. I played many different sports when I was younger: basketball, baseball, tennis, and soccer. I hiked, camped, and worked out. Now, that I have kids, I have researched and purchased equipment for their sporting endeavors. As I age, I have been forced to look for fitness equipment and exercises that are a good fit for someone who has arthritis, a bad back, sore knees, and the unfortunate ravages of overuse (when are they going to develop total body replacements?). However, I still have a strong desire to stay in decent shape and remain healthy - and of course, like many parents, I live vicariously through the activities of my kids. This keeps me at least reasonably knowledgeable and up-to-date on many products in the sporting, fitness, and recreation realms.
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