Best Youth Baseball Bats Reviews: Full Guide To Choosing Between Aluminum, Composite And Wooden Options

Kids as young as 4 or 5 years old love the excitement that comes with the game of baseball. Many of them grow up watching the game on TV with their parents, and it doesn’t take long until they are hooked on the game.

Whether it’s T-Ball or Soft Ball that kids start out with, the one thing they will need is a decent baseball bat. But the worst thing you can do is give a young child, or even teenager, a bat that is not suitable for their size and experience.

This often results in two extremes. Kids start playing with products that are too heavy or long, resulting in an awkward swing that doesn’t help become consistent. Or kids are given professional grade equipment at an age where the technology can actually go against them.

It’s a careful balancing act of age, height and experience. And to help you find the best youth baseball bat, we have put together this list of reviews. All price ranges and materials are covered, and you’re guaranteed to find something suitable.

Our Top 10 Best Youth Baseball Bats Recommendations

ProductFeatureRating
#1 - DeMarini Voodoo Overlord
Professional Design And Material
  • Provide additional strength
  • Length to weight ratio: -13
  • Very light and comfortable
5.0 stars out of 5
#2 - Easton Mako Composite
Excellent Choice For Stronger Players
  • Huge sweet spot
  • High Tech design
  • Very light
4.5 stars out of 5
#3 - Louisville Slugger Youth Armor
Very Dependable Design
  • Nice light design​​​​​
  • Length to weight ratio: -12
  • Very Reasonably priced
4.5 stars out of 5

1. DeMarini Voodoo Overlord: Professional Design And Material

DeMarini Voodoo bats have been a long-time favorite with youth players, and this latest model is no exception. It uses excellent composite alloy materials that provide great strength and stiffness throughout. This is especially important for the thinnest points of the bat where breakage is most likely to occur.

This model comes with a drop weight of -13 which means it is very light. For younger players aged 8 to 12 this is going to be ideal to help them control the bat better. Rather than the bat controlling the player.

With the lightness and the stiffness combined, you’ll also get a far greater transfer of power. The lightness helps to swing the bat faster and stiffness ensures that less power is lost to flex.

One thing that kids find particularly uncomfortable is excessive vibration. For small hands this can be a bit painful and kids often hold back because of it. The DeMarini has solved for that very nicely in a professional design that reduces vibration to a minimum.

And if you’re concerned about spending a lot of money on a bat that might not be approved, then you can rest assured. This one is fully certified for competitive use in Little League baseball.

The only downsides are that the cool painted design has a tendency to chip quite easily. For some players that’s a badge of honor as it shows it’s been used a lot. And it’s also advised to not keep it in very cold conditions for long periods of time, as this can cause cracks to appear.

Pros:

  • Excellent composite alloys provide additional strength at thinnest points
  • Length to weight ratio: -13
  • Very stiff design ensures maximum transfer of power
  • Practically no vibrations felt through impact
  • Very light and comfortable making it ideal for young players

Cons:

  • Painted design can chip easily
  • Longer exposure to cold temps can cause cracks
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2. Easton Mako Composite: Excellent Choice For Stronger Players

Easton is another brand name you’ll see at every game from Little League to MLB stage. They are known for quality design using the latest technology and materials. This Mako model is going to be ideal for youths of about 10 years old. Using composite materials, it’s going to be light enough to increase control.

How light you want it to be does depend on experience and strength of the player. This model is a little heavier than the above DeMarini, which might be a negative for some buyers.

At the price range, this does at first seem a bit disappointing, but it depends on player preference. Some youngsters prefer something a bit heavier. There is also going to be an age where kids will need to start transitioning to heavier bats anyway. So, this might be an ideal solution.

The drop weight ratio is -12, so not quite as low as the more expensive option above. Again, this might actually go in favor of the player.

The materials used will provide maximum stiffness which ensures that as much power as possible is transferred to the ball. And with the 2-piece design that stiffness won’t result in excessive vibrations felt in the hands. Overall, it makes for a very comfortable swing and impact.

And because there’s such a large sweet spot you’ll notice much better and more consistent ball connection. For young players that will give them a huge motivational boost.

On the downside though, if it’s going to be used a lot then it might not last for much more than a season and a half.

Pros:

  • Composite alloy materials make it light to help maximize swing speed
  • Length to weight ratio: -12
  • High Tech design makes it extremely stiff for max power transfer
  • 2-piece design helps to reduce vibrations affecting the grip
  • Huge sweet spot to help better ball connection

Cons:

  • Not the longest lasting
  • For the price a lighter design would be expected
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3. Louisville Slugger Youth Armor: Very Dependable Design

One of the most renowned manufacturers of baseball bats has always been Louisville Slugger. For decades, they have been providing professional and amateur bats that are hard to beat on price and performance.

This youth model can quickly turn into a pitcher’s nightmare because it provides a very consistent and fast swing. The aluminum alloy used is both light and very stiff. As a result, you’ll be able to swing faster and transfer a lot more power over to the ball at impact.

The drop weight is -12 which is very good for a bat in this price range. There are very few products of this quality and price that will give you such a light experience. From the very first swings in a training session, you’ll notice how much extra power there is.

Because it’s a one piece design there is far less chance of it breaking. This can most often happen at the thinners parts of the bat where a two-piece design would connect. For regular game play and practice, it’ll be a very dependable and durable option.

To reduce shock and vibration that can be common in single piece bats, there is a very effective end plate. This absorbs and distributes the majority of the shock to reduce discomfort in the hands.

The downside is that the sweet spot is quite small. For very young players with not much experience, this might not be the best option. And when used in a batting cage, just make sure you constantly rotate the bat to avoid denting.

Pros:

  • Nice light design makes it easy to swing and control
  • Length to weight ratio: -12
  • One piece design makes it very durable
  • Great endcap design to reduce shocks and vibration
  • Very Reasonably priced product from a leading brand name

Cons:

  • Sweet spot is a bit on the small side, so not ideal for beginners
  • Aluminum body can dent with extensive batting cage use
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4. Rawlings Velo Composite: Excellent Option To Add Extra Distance

If you ever see a Little League game with most players using Mako bats and just a few using the Rawlings Velo, then be prepared. Those players will likely have experienced the significant extra distance that you can achieve. We’re willing to bet that any kids who try this out in practice will be convinced.

The lengthened barrel is designed to maximize the sweet spot. This reduced mishits that are off by small margins. For kids this is going to make a huge difference to results and confidence in their ability.

But what stands out the most is that it provides excellent pop with a very stiff design. It’s a one-piece aluminum alloy design to reduce flex as much as possible. The result is that far more power is transferred from the player to the ball at impact. It’s not unheard of for young kids to quickly reach the boundary of a Little League pitch.

Speaking of Little League, this product is fully approved for competitive use throughout the USA. So no need to worry about not being compliant. And kids love the really cool and unique design. Both from a visual and a performance perspective players will instantly stand out.

The main downside is that the bit of extra weight does mean it takes a bit more time to get used. This is mainly down to it initially felling a little off balance. And you will need to spend some time to break it in properly which might require some coaching advice.

Pros:

  • Lengthened barrel provides a huge sweet spot ideal for young players
  • Excellent pop and power transfer for much longer hits
  • Length to weight ratio: -11
  • Fully certified for Little League use
  • Very cool looking design

Cons:

  • Requires breaking in, so get some coaching advice
  • Feel takes a bit of getting used
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5. Franklin Sports Venom: Ideal For Very Young Kids

It can be very difficult to find a suitable bat for kids under 7 years old. Even when they are just playing T-Ball you want to make sure they are learning the right swing. Bad habits form quickly and can be difficult to get rid of later on. This Franklin Sports Venom option fills that gap nicely.

It’s made using aluminum alloy that is hard wearing and very light. This will help to improve the swing style and will instantly provide more control to your kid. It happens too often that a bat ends up controlling the kids.

The drop ratio is -11 which is perfectly OK for young children. It will help to increase bat speed without being off balance or awkward to swing. And since we’re on the topic of balance, this is one of the stand out features. It will significantly help to promote a smooth and consistent swing.

The grip is also designed to make it a lot easier for small hands to hold onto. With a perforated material there is far less chance of your child slipping during the swing. And with that consistency comes a lot more confidence.

It certainly is an ideal solution for T-Ball, but expect it to easily damage and dent once you transition to baseball. And while the paint looks really cool, it will start to chip quite quickly. Overall though, this is a great option for a limited budget.

Pros:

  • Aluminum alloy construction makes it a very durable choice for young kids
  • Length to weight ratio: -11
  • 2 1/4 inch barrel is ideal for children to learn the game
  • Grip is designed to make it easier on children’s hands
  • Very well balanced to help create a smooth swing

Cons:

  • While good for T Ball, it can quickly dent in baseball
  • Painted design can chip easily
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6. Easton USA S150: Cheap And Very Durable Option

If you have a very tight budget or are just sick of replacing expensive bats, then this Easton S150 is an ideal option. It’s not the lightest product on this list, but with a drop weight of -10 it’s still firmly in the lightweight category.

This helps young players to swing the bat faster and get a lot more distance out of it. But at a young age it’s usually more important to focus on the balance to ensure a smooth swing. And that’s where Easton has done a good job to provide a great product for kids to learn a more consistent swing.

The aluminum materials are top grade and military standard. That makes it light, weather proof and very stiff. And with a one-piece design there is less risk of a break around the handle area. If your kid plays a lot then that is something that will otherwise become inevitable.

But it doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune on bats. This Easton is very well priced and you won’t mind replacing it when needed. For competitive play it’s fully approved and certified in all types of Little League.

The main downside is that it’s not available in the usual shorter sizes. So it’ll be tough to use by very young players. Then again, with the slightly heavier weight, you’ll probably be better off with a different option altogether.

Pros:

  • High Quality aluminum materials for durable design
  • Length to weight ratio: -10
  • Fully approved for competitive play by USA Baseball and USSSA
  • Soft and tacky grips avoids any slipping during the swing
  • Single piece design for more durability

Cons:

  • Shorter sizes would be helpful for very young players
  • It’s a bit heavier than advertised
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7. Rawlings YB5R13: Light Design At A Reasonable Price

Another excellent Rawlings option for kids is this YB5R13 model. With it’s 2 1/4  inch barrel it is fully approved for use in youth baseball leagues across the country. One of the main focus points for young players is always the weight and balance.

At a young age, any balance issues will quickly result in swing adjustments that will be hard to fix once they have become natural. With its drop weight of -13, this is one of the lightest choices on this for such a reasonable price range.

By using high end aluminum alloy materials Rawlings have produced a bat that is ideal for kids who like to spend endless days playing baseball, softball or t-ball for younger children. Let’s face it, the bat will not be given a lot of tender care, and will likely see a lot of playing all year round.

But the durable alloy, also comes with the added benefit of making it very stiff, That stiffness means that you can transfer a lot more power from your swing to the ball at impact. The result is higher swing and ball speed with significantly further distances.

The main downside is that it has a very small sweet spot, which can be awkward to get used for very young players and beginners. And there will be some vibration going into the handle due to the stiffness, which will take getting used to as well. Make sure you get a good pair of gloves to reduce the effect.

Pros:

  • Nice and light design with a well-balanced feel for smoother swing
  • Length to weight ratio: -13
  • Fully approved for competition play
  • Durable thanks to using great aluminum alloy materials
  • Great ball speed and distance from the stiff design

Cons:

  • Very small sweet spot so more suitable to experienced kids
  • Quite a bit of vibration that makes it a bit uncomfortable
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8. Easton S500: Excellent Weight And Sweet Spot

This Easton S500 is an excellent choice for youth players looking for something very light. The materials used are aerospace grade aluminum alloy and make this very light and stiff. That lightness will significantly help to improve swing speed and will make it a lot easier to keep an optimum swing path.

This is very important in young players as bad habits developed at this age will be difficult to get rid of. The stiff material will also ensure that you transfer more power from the swing to the ball at the moment of impact.

With a length weight ratio of -13, you won’t be able to find a better choice at this price. This ratio also makes it a very well balanced option, that also promotes a much more natural and ideal swing.

Even with all the high tech material it is still fully USSSA approved for use in all youth leagues. This is important, as you don’t want to run into trouble in competitive play. And to help beginners get some better results, the sweet spot is very large. This makes it forgiving and helps to get some sense of success and confidence when just starting out.

The main downside is that given the price range this is in, the bat does produce quite a bit of vibration. This can be improved by getting some padded gloves.

Pros:

  • Fully USSSA certified
  • Length to weight ratio: -13
  • Aerospace grade alloy materials for lighter and stiffer design
  • Very well balanced for more natural swing and higher speed
  • Good sweet spot for better beginner level suitability

Cons:

  • Some vibration might be distracting for young players
  • Given the amount of vibration it’s a bit expensive
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9. DeMarini CF6: For Minimum Vibration

This is one of the highest rated products on Amazon and for very good reasons. For young players, one of the most distracting, annoying and sore things about hitting a ball can be excessive vibration or sting.

This is when at the moment of impact, vibrations move to the handle and transfer to the muscles in your hand. Even as an adult, this is not a particularly nice experience, but there are ways to reduce this to a minimum.

This particular DiMarini CF6 is a two-piece construction with a joining at the top of the handle. Through this joining, any vibrations are stopped from traveling further down towards the hands. Despite the high tech design, the bat is fully approved for all youth leagues.

The drop weight is pretty decent at -11, but there are lighter options on this list. For kids that already have a decent swing, the weight won’t be as important, and the lower vibrations will likely help to hit the ball harder.

The handle and barrel are made from composite materials using carbon to make them light and extremely stiff. This stiffness helps to transfer more power from the bat to the ball at impact. This also helps to provide a much more reactive sweet spot that will make the ball travel noticeably further.

The downsides are that it does require some breaking in. Just plan some cage time in once it arrives to make sure you get the best out of it. And it’s quite a big price to pay.

Pros:

  • Two-piece design reduces sting and vibration
  • Length to weight ratio: -11
  • Composite handle with carbon materials gives a very stiff design
  • Enhanced sweet spot improves ball speed
  • USSSA approved for youth leagues across the country

Cons:

  • Requires breaking in, so plan for some time in the cage
  • Quite an expensive decision to make
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10. Louisville Slugger Youth 225

If you’ve got a limited budget or just don’t want to be spending a lot of money on something that might not last more than one or two seasons, then this Louisville Slugger will do just fine. Yes, it’s not made of fancy alloys or carbon composites. And yes, it uses good old fashioned wood.

But for just some messing around and practice it will work just fine. The wood used is Ash, which makes it reasonably light. It has also been pressure treated to reduce the amount of dents. But reality is that with any wood you will eventually get some dents and soft spots. Not the end of the world for most youths though.

The overall design also creates a huge sweet spot which is perfect for young players trying to get their swing right. It boosts confidence by showing some early results.

Basically, it’s cheap and effective, making it suitable for kids of all ages. But once you see some swing improvements, then it’s time to switch to something a bit more advanced.

Pros:

  • Lightweight Ash material makes this a great wooden option
  • Flexible design provides a much larger sweet spot
  • Very reasonable price

Cons:

  • Will not be as long lasting
  • Heavier than all aluminum options
  • Some denting and soft spots can appear quickly
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Features You Need To Focus On

When you’re buying a new baseball bat for yourself or your kid, there are many things that you need to focus on. The problem is that many companies use different marketing terms to explain exactly the same thing. This makes it very difficult to compare. And it’s why we put this guide together.

All our research was built upon focusing on the following features to avoid being blinded by advertising hype. If you do the same thing, then you’ll be in a much better position to buy a bat that will work so much better.

Material

There are essentially three different types of material: (a) wood, (b) aluminum, (c) composite metal.

Wood is the most traditional material, and you’ll get some cheap youth baseball bats that work perfectly well. Some people still love using wooden ones because it’s what they grew up with. But kids these days are more likely to be playing with some type of metal.

Aluminum alloy is the most affordable metal option and it’s extremely light and stiff. If you don’t want to pay a fortune for carbon composite materials, then aluminum is going to be the best choice. It’s durable enough to stand up to a lot of practice and game time.

And the light weight helps to encourage a better and more consistent swing.

Carbon composite is the most expensive option and is what you’d find in professional bats. For very young kids and especially beginners, this is going to be complete overkill. Yes, it’s even lighter than aluminum and it’s just as stiff. But the differences are quite small and will really only help with more advanced players.

Weight

The important thing to focus on is not just the overall weight. Yes, the lighter it is the easier it will be for young players to swing. But the number you want to focus on is the weight to length ration. This is often referred to as the drop weight and will be given in the form of a negative number. -10 would be a bit on the heavier side, while -13 would be very light.

With a longer and lighter bat, you will be able to get a much better swing and you’ll generally get a better sweet spot. So, you get more consistency and a better impact that will boost confidence.

But, be aware that the lower the negative number is the more expensive it’s going to be. It’s not the most critical feature for very young and beginner players, but will become important with age and experience.

1-Piece vs 2-Piece Design

To the naked eye most baseball bats will look very similar. They’ll be different lengths and will have different designs on them. But under that paint you will find two very different designs.

Cheaper options will generally be 1-piece designs. This means it’s made from a single seamless piece with no joining. It’s cheaper to make and works perfectly well. But it can result in more vibration traveling to the handle. The advantage is that it they are less likely to break.

In a 2-piece design the handle and top barrel are separate and then glued or even welded together. This allows for a barrier to be created and less vibration to travel down the handle (more on this in the next section). This special construction does cost more, and there is a higher chance of a break around the area where the two pieces join.

Vibration

This is often referred to as sting, because of the effect that vibration has on the hands. At the moment of impact with the ball, there is a lot of power being transferred and with metal based clubs that force can transform into vibrations in the metal.

These vibrations can then travel down the barrel towards the hands. And because the handle is slimmer this can increase the effect significantly. Then, when the vibration hits the hands it can transfer to the hands and cause quite an uncomfortable or painful sting.

What players will then tend to do is to reduce swing speed as hard. This can happen completely subconsciously and of course will have a negative effect on ball flight and distance.

The type of metal used and the design of the model can hugely reduce this effect. And the less sting there is the better it is for the player. But the less vibrations there are the more money you are likely going to have to pay.

Sweet Spot

This is essentially the optimum impact point on the barrel where you will get the biggest pop. When you consistently hit the ball in this area you will get a better and longer ball flight. The bigger this sweet spot is the more forgiving it will be.

Some products out there have a very small sweet spot, and they work perfectly for advanced players. But as a beginner or young child, it’s much better to get a larger one because it will boost confidence at an early stage. For very young kids you can also choose one of the youth big barrel baseball bats available.

USSSA Approved

This is a very important thing to look out for. Unless a bat is fully approved for use in competitive leagues across the country, you could run into trouble. If it’s just going to be used for playing in the back yard, then this isn’t so important.

But as soon as you play in a team or a competition, you’ll need to be fully compliant, Otherwise it can result in disqualification and a lot of disappointment.

Even for just playing at home or for practice at the local park, you are better off having an approved bat. The reason is that switching between different types can affect the swing and cause inconsistent hits.

Youth Baseball Bat Sizing Guide

The following table is just a guide, as the height of the player will have a much bigger impact. However, assuming that you are average height for your age, these numbers will work very well to pick the right size.

Age In Year

Length In Inches

5 to 7

24 to 26

8 to 9

26 to 28

10

28 to 29

11 to 12

30 to 31

13 to 14

31 to 32

15 to 16

32 to 33

17+

34+

Conclusion

This concludes our best youth baseball bat reviews and you should now have all the information you need to make a purchase. Just follow the above price check buttons to place your order at Amazon. Within a few days, you could have a new bat that helps to hit the ball more consistently and further.

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