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By Bat Digest | Last Updated November 17, 2022
Although there are some notable differences, the idea is the same between the 2016 Nighthawk and the 2017 Covert. Both bats are two-piece hybrid bats. This means they have a composite handle and an aluminum alloy barrel. They are welded together around the midpoint of the bat.
By way of changes, Mizuno updated the aluminum alloy in the bat. They claim the alloy is stronger and, therefore, the walls can be thinner. Thinner walls would allow the bat a larger sweet spot by exaggerating the tapered barrel design without losing durability. Mizuno claims the sweet spot (where max pop is achieved) is 22% longer than the Nighthawk.
There is no practical way to confirm if these advancements have been achieved, we simply report on what they claim.
The thinner walls also decrease the effective swing weight. Although it should still be considered a mid-balanced bat, the 2017 Covert will swing lighter than the 2016 Nighthawk.
We recently hit with the BBCOR and Big Barrel versions of the new 2017 Mizuno Covert. Our hitting experience was mostly in cage, although we took it to the field to see ball flight as well. We also exchanged a number of emails with Mizuno to dial in our understanding of the bat and how it upgraded from the 2016 Nighthawk. As well, a number of trusted online sources were referenced for details and other player experience on the Covert. All of this information is compiled below in our 2017 Mizuno Covert Review.
Those who have used the 2016 BBCOR Nighthawk came away impressed. Additionally, although always wary of believing so-called user reviews, the Nighthawk rarely receives anything but maximum stars. Most players comment on the pop of the bat and how surprised they are few players use, or even know, the bat. Like last year, we would recommend the 2017 Covert to players who:
Although a legit bat, that doesn’t mean it is for everyone. We’d stay away from the bat if we fit into any of the categories below.
The two-piece hybrid bat with a mid to light swing has a few competitors. None have the same tapered inner barrel the Mizuno Covert uses, but a few get some good barrel size and performance reports.
Two bats, in particular, come to mind. The 2016 Louisville Slugger 716 (Our review) and the 2017 DeMarini Voodoo Balanced (our review). Both have similar price points, swing weights, and performance metrics as the 2017 Mizuno Covert. Those looking for similar bats may want to check them out as well.
The 2017 Mizuno Covert is a new name in the 2017 Mizuno line of baseball bats. It should be considered the next generation 2016 Mizuno Nighthawk. The name change, as far as we have gathered, is to clear up the confusion between the Mizuno Nighthawk fastpitch line, made up of two-piece composite bats, and the Nighthawk baseball line, made of hybrid bats. The Covert model should be the hybrid baseball bat name going forward.
Amazingly, Mizuno has only been in the metal and composite bat space for 3 years. Mizuno is dead serious about making top-shelf performance bats in the BBCOR and Big Barrel space. Seriously, watch out.
The overall rating uses seven different weighted metrics to determine our overall score. Half of total rating comes from the player and our exit speed tests (Player Rating: 25%, Performance: 25%).The other categories are Relevance (20%), Demand (10%), Durability (10%), Resell Score (5%), and Tech Specs (5%).
*: When a bat is denoted by a star (*) it is a preliminary rating. Expect it to be updated as we learn more about the bat and gather more data.
(PlaRa) Player Rating: We measure player rating from user reviews. Those users include our own hitters that we test at the lab as well as reviews we find online.
(ExVe) Performance: Performance measures the exit speeds and distances we capture in our hitting lab with HitTrax using these bats.
(Relv) Relevance: We measure the number of sizes and the MOI of the bat. Bats with a wider range of options get a better score.
(Dmnd) Demand: Demand is measured by consumer sentiment and the buzz around the bat.
(Drb) Durability: A bat’s durability is measured by user reviews as well as feedback from manufacturers.
(ReSl) Resell Score: Based on the price the bats go for used. Higher prices mean greater user demand which means, generally, a better bat. A resell value closer to its original price means a higher score.
(Tech) Tech Specs: We rate the bat on its technological advancements from previous years and compared to the industry at large. This is our chance to reward companies who are trying to innovate.
MOI or Mass Moment of Inertia is a measurement of bat swing weight. This quantifies how difficult it is to swing a bat. The industry often refers to this as things like End Load or Balanced but those words have been overused to the point of meaninglessness. We measure the actual swing weights of each bat we test using the industry-standard pendulum period, balance point, and scale weight. You can read more about that here.
The price is the original MSRP price of the bat.
The types of bats are single-piece alloy (SPA), two-piece composite (TPC), single-piece composite (SPC), hybrid (Hyb.), and wood (Wood). Hybrid bats are made of composite handles and alloy barrles.
The estimated date the bat began distribution.