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By Bat Digest | Last Updated November 17, 2022
We spent considerable time with the 2018 Rawlings Quatro in both real game work as well as cage time.
Our bat has been used with several different types of hitters and their feedback was gathered. That information, combined with our experience of the 2017 Rawlings Quatro, goes into the following 2018 Rawlings Quatro Review.
Very few bats have wowed us with their performance in the BBCOR space. The 2018 Quatro does specifically because of its ability at low impact speeds. Any player, especially smaller ones, could reach top levels of performance and trampoline with the bat. The major downside, of course, is the bat’s durability. Higher swing speeds and bigger players, hoping to get the same advantage smaller ones were, destroy this bat over and over again. (A fair number of smaller hitters did too).
In terms of a two piece composite bat with an inner sleeve on the end of the barrel the Quatro stands alone. There is simply no other bat like it. In terms of a light swinging two piece composite bat the market is crowded.
Aside from the slight changes in color, the only difference in the 2018 Quatro when compared to the 2017 version is the swing weight. And although the swing weight change is not dramatic (they did not, for example, go all the way from an end load to a balanced) it is enough of a lighter swing weight in 2018 to make a noticeable difference. In other words, if you didn’t like the feel of the 2017 version then the 2018 option might still be your ticket.
The swing weight change was created by a redevelopment of the end cap and the extended inner sleeve. As more bulk and weight was removed from those elements swing weight dropped sufficiently. This principle is simple enough: more weight taken from the end of a bat lowers the amount of strength to spin it around by the knob. This insight relies on the the basic principles of Mass Moment of Inertia or MOI.
The 2018 Rawlings Quatro is made of four distinct pieces. It is, technically, a four piece bat and Rawlings likes to point this out. The name of the bat, Quatro, signifies the four pieces.
The additional inner barrel at the end of the Quatro serves the purpose of allowing the outer barrel of the Quatro the flexibility to perform well at slow pitch speeds. As well, the outer barrels pliability gives the bat a shortened work in period.
Of course the idea of an inner barrel advantage are all in theory. No one has the data to prove that an inner barrel around the end portion of a barrel in a baseball bat is superior to ones without an inner barrel. Many fastpitch softball bats use an inner ring and a many of them swear by the idea.
But the Rawlings Quatro stands alone, even within their own brand, as the only baseball bat with a composite inner barrel on the outer half of the barrel.
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.