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January 11, 2020 | by | @BatDigest
We intended to develop the most reliable bat size chart on the internet. To do so, we needed real user data. We also needed to see what tables were already out there. We found some weird stuff. And some useful stuff.
We also think we developed the best one.
That is what follows.
First, we surveyed thousands of real players to see what bat size they used. Here’s is our data, organized by baseball and fastpitch as well as league, age, and relative size.
It is, as far as we know, the only empirical study on baseball and fastpitch bat sizes accomplished to date.
Player size, as it is in the chart, is determined by the parent who filled out the survey. They got asked how big their child was when compared to their age class.
The second way we think we found the best bat size chart is by groupthink. But, most bat size charts on the internet are copies of each other. They have the same exact data but are just put in a different color scheme or calculator.
We found seven different bat size charts. Everything else on the internet, as far as we see, are copies of each other.
Scroll to the right to see all bat size suggestions by average size player in each age class. Notice, too, many bat size charts don’t offer a weight suggestion—just a length. For non-BBCOR players, this makes the youth bat suggestion a partial mystery as bats come in various drops.
|Age||Height (in)||Feet||In||Weight||Bat Digest||Bat Size Chart.com||Just Bats||Marucci||Dicks Sporting Goods||Anthem & Co.||Arizona University|
|6||45||3||9||45||26/14||None||27-Inch||25 – 26″||28-Inch||28-Inch||19-Ounce|
|7||47||3||11||51||27/15||26/14||27-Inch||25 – 26″||28-Inch||28-Inch||19-Ounce|
|8||50||4||2||57||28/16||27/15||28-Inch||26 – 27″||29-Inch||29-Inch||20-Ounce|
|9||53||4||5||64||28/18||28/16||29-Inch||26 – 27″||30-Inch||30-Inch||22-Ounce|
|10||55||4||7||74||29/19||29/18||29-Inch||27 – 28″||30-Inch||30-Inch||23-Ounce|
|11||57||4||9||85||30/20||30/19||30-Inch||27 – 28″||30-Inch||30-Inch||24-Ounce|
|12||59||4||11||110||31/21||31/21||30-Inch||27 – 28″||31-Inch||31-Inch||26-Ounce|
|13||61||5||1||125||31/26||32/24||31-Inch||28 – 30″||32-Inch||32-Inch||27-Ounce|
|*13||61||5||1||125||32/29||30/27||28 – 30″||32-Inch||32-Inch||27-Ounce|
|14||64||5||4||140||32/29||32/29||31/28||28 – 30″||32-Inch||32-Inch||28-Ounce|
|15||67||5||7||150||32/29||33/30||32/29||30 – 34″||33-Inch||33-Inch||29-Ounce|
|16||68||5||8||160||33/30||33/30||32/29||30 – 34″||33-Inch||33-Inch||30-Ounce|
|17||70||5||10||170||33/30||33/30||32/29||30 – 34″||33-Inch||33-Inch||31-Ounce|
*The 2nd 13-year-Old row are BBCOR suggestions. The 1st 13-year-old row are youth bat size recommendations.
We discuss them in detail below.
In full disclosure, we also own the site called BatSizeChart.com. We intended to create a website build entirely for the appropriate sizing of bats. At the time, we built what is, toot! toot!, the most useful single bat chart available. Unlike other charts which lack the weight suggestions, BatSizeChart.com adds the length and weight by color-coding a drop into the mix and separating BBCOR players.
Inside the chart, there are two ways to slice it. The top section is the height of the player vs. the weight. The second is the age vs. weight.
For example, a 91 to 100 pound player that is the 4’6″ should swing between a 30-inch drop 12 and drop 11. Or, a 151 pound player at 5’10” should swing a 33-inch BBCOR bat.
The bat size chart at JustBats.com has an interactive interface. You can choose from different bat types, then the height and weight of the player. Once selected, it suggests the length of a bat.
A 4’6″ youth baseball player weighing between 91 and 100 pounds should use a 29 to 31-inch bat, or so this says.
But what weight?
The calculator doesn’t say what weight. Most bat size charts fail to capture weight information. Yet youth barrel bats in a 30-inch, for example, range from 17 ounces up to 25 ounces. The 4’6″ player above might narrow in on a 29 to 31-inch bat easy enough. But without a weight suggestion, a recommendation of a bat length is not entirely useful.
For BBCOR bats, the answer is more evident because BBCOR bats are required to be a drop 3. That is, their weight in ounces is three lower than their height in inches. So, a 33-inch BBCOR bat has a stated weight of 30-ounces.
Marucci’s bat size chart section is recommendable for its honesty. In short, it claims that the right bat has too many variables to put into a chart. Instead, they put you on the right path by giving you a rough feel for where a lot of players of a particular height are, then telling you to go try some out and see what works for you.
The bat length they suggest is by height. A 4’6″ should have a 27 or 28-inch bat, and a 5’10” player should have between a 30 and 34-inch bat. Not specific details, but at least they point out the reality that bat size depends on way more than height and weight.
Dick’s Sporting Goods has a simplified bat size chart too. They do not have a smooth calculator like JustBats, but they do discuss bat weight. As well, they have a table organizing suggested bat length by age and weight.
If your player stands 4’6″ and weighs between 91 and 100 pounds, then the chart suggests a 30-inch bat. 30-inches is the same length the JustBats calculator showed. However, the 5’10” player that weighs 150 pounds needs a 33-inch bat according to the DSG chart. But, according to the JustBats chart, they need a 32-inch bat.
It is hard to tell where the “Anthem” chart below originated. The chart data is found in several formats and color schemes on many sites. (No, seriously, many). Somewhere, somehow, someone put together a chart, and then, apparently, everyone else copied it. Why that table’s table is so ubiquitous and recreated is not readily apparent.
Based on a 4’6″ player that weighs 91 pounds, the table suggests a 30-inch bat. A 5’10” player at 151 should swing a 33-inch bat.
Another bat size chart you can find is a derivative of the one above. If you look close, you’ll see all this table does is fill in the blank cells missing in the table above. You can locate this derivative chart here (and other places too).
In its specifics, it is noteworthy. See, for example, a three-foot-tall player that weighs 181 pounds. The chart recommends this hitter use a 30-inch bat. Of course, that can’t be true. The only thing a 181 pound 3 feet tall person should be using is a phone to call an ambulance.
Like the other chart, this is copied from, a 4’6″ player at 91 pounds should be using a 30-inch bat. A 5’10” player at 151 pounds 33-inch bat.
The other study, aside from ours that used empirical data to determine the right bat size was a study by some physics folks at the University of Arizona.
The study has some complicated things within it. But, ultimately, it is a formula to derive the optimal bat size that should deliver the optimal amount of power. It uses the height of a player. But, most uniquely, it uses the typical pitch speed the player sees to optimize the amount of energy at impact.
We made an infographic helping you through the math.
By this formula, a 4’6″ player who sees an average pitch speed of 50mph should use a bat that weighs 22.653 ounces. A 5’10 player that sees 75mph on average should use a bat that weighs 29.995 ounces.
We like the idea behind this working model for bat sizes. However, the algorithm set to fit the right bat size seems to overestimate a smaller player’s ability to wield a heavy bat. For BBCOR type players, it appears to give an accurate suggestion.
The data we captured from 2700 survey responses are parsed by age and documented below.
A few highlights we found interesting.
We measured the most popular bat sizes by age. These measurements include the bat size, drop, and frequency (% of use). As an example, the most popular bat for a 9-year-old is 28/18, of which 26.6% of player use. The 2nd most popular 9-year-old bat is a 29/19, of which 24.5% use.
|Age||1st Most Popular Bat Size (% Use)||2nd Most Popular Bat Size (% Use)||See Chart|
|6||26/14 (.300)||28/16 (.200)|
|7||27/17 (.242)||28/18 (.152)||7 – Chart|
|8||28/18 (.230)||29/19 (.148)||8 – Chart|
|9||28/18 (.266)||29/19 (.245)||9 – Chart|
|10||29/19 (.331)||30/20 (.254)||10 – Chart|
|11||30/20 (.298)||31/21 (.119)||11 – Chart|
|12||30/20 (.173)||31/21 (.150)||12 – Chart|
|13*||31/26 (.200)||32/27 (.143)||13 – Non-BBCOR|
|13||32/29 (.373)||31/28 (.373)||13 – BBCOR|
|14||32/29 (.430)||33/30 (.278)||14 – BBCOR|
|15||32/29 (.392)||33/30 (.266)||15 – BBCOR|
|16||33/30 (.446)||32/29 (.323)||16 – BBCOR|
|17||33/30 (.450)||32/29 or 34/30 (.200)||17 – BBCOR|
We used RawGraphs to generate much of the structure and then some animation software to up the clarity.
The right bat size for a 7-year-old, as determined by most common, is a 27-inch length and 17-ounce bat. There are more using a 28/18 than a 26/16, but it’s close. The 26, 27, and 28-inch drop 10 bats account for roughly 65% of all 7U bats. We suggest you stay in that range. Find more details on our best bat for 7-year-olds.
We asked 100 parents of 7-year-old players about the right size bat for their player. The alluvial diagram below documents their feel based on the player’s metrics of height, weight, strength, and skill level concerning his peers.
There is too much information observed in the chart to comment on here. Each time we look at it, we notice something different. Of the important things, we find that the average 7-year-old uses a 17-ounce bat with a near 50/50 split on either a 27 or 28-inch. There are more 26-inch bats in the 7u space than 29-inches but not by much. Kids with an average height tend towards an 18-ounce bat as much as they do a 16-ounce bat, but the majority is in between that at 17 ounces. Only excellent players tend towards the 29/19’s.
There is also a sizable range in weights (from 13 to 19 ounces).
The right sized bat for a 7-year-old player appears to circle the 27/17. On average, most are also happy with the 28/18 and the 26/16. For some reason, maybe due to the model sizes offered, the 28/17 rates out a too heavy.
Average players, with average physical metrics, should do alright with a 27/17. But a mode of the 26.5/16.5 leads us to suggest a 26/16 as the second most likely fit. Note, too, that 13-ounce bats found in the T Ball space. If your 7U player is seeing kid or coach pitch, do know their T Ball bat won’t do that well.
The right bat size for an 8-year-old, as determined by actual usage, is a 28-inch length and 18-ounce bat. There are barely more using a 29-inch than a 27-inch. The 27 to 29-inch range accounts for more than 80% of all 12-year-old bat sizes. If you’re not sure, we suggest you go with an 18 or 17-ounce bat. Find more details on our best bat for eight-year-olds.
We surveyed over 200 8-year-old players bat size choices. We aggregated that data into a chart that focused on skill level, player strength, height, and weight compared to their peers. The results for the 8-year-olds are in this bat size diagram.
The most common bat size for 8-year-olds is a 28-inch and 18-ounce baseball bat. There are more 29-inch bats than 27-inch bats in the 8U space, but there are even more 19-ounce bats than there are 17-ounce bats. Many use a drop 11 in a 30 inch (upping the number of 19-ounce bats in 8-year-olds hands).
Of some interest, players whose parents consider them short tended to avoid 18-ounce bats in the 8-year-old space. They either swing a 17 or 19 ounce. Whereas tall players preferred 18 ounces.
Like we see in other age categories, very tall players tend to use lighter bats. We can’t explain why this is true across almost all of the data we collected. Possibly, a tall kid’s parents don’t see the need for a longer bat. Or, maybe, overly tall kids at the age of 8 tend to be rather weak and uncoordinated and, therefore, prefer a shorter bat. In any event, the surveys we received from real players show very tall players tended towards the lighter end of the 8-year-old bat spectrum.
In short, there are a ton of bat options for 8-year-olds. To be safe, the 28/18 appears the most common choice among almost any type of attribute. If the player is particularly strong or skilled, then a 29/19 might be in the mix. But, if you want bat speed, then the 28/17 might be a home run.
Find more details on the best and right bats for 8-year-olds here.
The right bat size for a 9-year-old, as determined by actual usage, is a 28 or 29-inch drop 10 bat. The drop is the numerical difference between the length of the bat in inches and the weight in ounces. 28 and 29-inch bats in an 18 to 20-ounce weight range make up more than 80% of total 9U bat usage. When in doubt, we suggest a 28/18 regardless of the player’s 9-year-old size—as those are poor determinates for the correctly sized bat as we’ve proved in our data collection. Find more details on our best bat for 9U-year-olds.
There is a remarkably wide range of baseball bat sizes for 9-year-olds. As well, there does not appear to be any particular theme other than a general coalescence around the 29/19 and 28/18 sized bats. But, there are at least a few swinging a 30/20 and even fewer in the 31/21 range. We found that, for most, the 30/20 is too heavy a bat, and players rated it too heavy for the 9U market.
We do notice that excellent 9-year-old players tend towards the 20-ounce baseball bat and that weak players avoid anything more than an 18-ounce bat. Struggling players don’t swing anything over a 29-inch, and only the strong and very strong consider anything over a 20-ounce bat.
8-year-old players with average weight split pretty evenly across the 18, 19, and 20-ounce bat weight but tend to prefer the 29 and 28-inch over the 30. Meaning, if anything else, there are at least a few 29-inch drop 9 users out there.
20-ounce bats for 9-year-olds tended to be too heavy. Some liked it, but most rated it as too heavy a stick for their age class. We’d recommend if you are an excellent or big player to keep the bat size in the 29/19 range and stay away from 20-ounce bats until you’re 10. You can find more commentary on this chart as well as recommendations for 9-year-olds bat choices on our best bat for a 9-year-olds page.
The right bat size for a 10-year-old, as determined by usage, is a 29 or 30-inch drop 10 or 11 bat. The drop is the numerical difference between the length of the bat in inches and the weight in ounces. 29 and 30-inch bats in the 18 to 20-ounce weight range make up more than 90% of total 10U bat usage. When in doubt, we suggest a 29/19 regardless of the player’s 10-year-old size—as those are poor determinates for the correctly sized bat, as we’ve proved in our data collection. Find more details on our best bat for 10U players.
For 10-year-olds, the most common bat lengths, far and away when compared to other young age categories, are the 29 and 30-inch drop 10 sticks. But, unlike other more youthful players, every group of bat size for 10-year-olds were generally happy with their bat size.
As we observe in other age-specific bat charts, very tall players tend to avoid heavier bats. They tend towards lighter and shorter bats more averaged sized kids in their age group. We aren’t quite sure why this is, frankly. It could be due to the fact they don’t need as much length as shorter kids, so aren’t worried about bat reach. Or, possibly, overly tall kids are not as coordinated and therefore need as small of bats as they can find.
There are a few strong and powerful kids who swing a 21-ounce bat as a 10-year-old. But, we did not find any who were swinging a 32-inch bat. Meaning, at least a couple of the more advanced and bigger kids used a 30/21 drop 9 if you want to be safe, stay with a 29/19 or 30/20.
We dissect this chart a bit more, and have specific suggestions for bat models, in our best bats for the 10-year-old page.
The right bat size for an 11-year-old, as determined by actual usage, is a 30-inch bat in a 19 through the 21-ounce range. 30-inch bats in a 19 to 21-ounce weight range make up more than 40% of total 11U bat usage. As well, another 40% of players are using either a 29 or 31-inch in those same weight classes. When in doubt, we suggest a 20-ounce bat in a 31, 30, or 29-inch regardless of the player’s 11-year-old size—as those are poor determinates for the correctly sized bat as we’ve proved in our data collection. Find more details on our best bat for 11-year-olds.
Over 200 parents of players with 11-year-olds answered our bat size chart survey. We asked about the player’s height, weight, skill level, and strength concerning their peers. Like in all other categories, parents tended to believe their child was above average skill, shorter than everyone else, and stronger than most. Our site may offer some selection bias as only those with above-average ability tend to care about their bats—and would find themselves on our website.
The perception that our children are generally shorter than they are is a common theme in all these bat size charts. That false notion persisted for the 11-year old group of bat size chart surveys too.
We learn at least a few interesting things from the 11-year old bat chart survey data. In particular, the 30-inch and 20-ounce bat is a runaway favorite. But, in terms of a specific trait that drives to a bat size, we found no overwhelming evidence. Players of all sorts and sizes swing bats from a 29/19 to a 31/21 pretty regularly.
As well, much like the 10-year-old group, players are generally happy with their bat. Although a guess, we feel it a reasonable assumption that 11-year-old players have played enough baseball to know which bat fits them well. So, even those who liked a drop 5 31/26 are just as happy as the 29/19 players.
Strong 11-year-old players tended towards the 30-inch as much as they liked the 31-inch. Powerful players were all over the 31-inch and made up a good chunk of the 22-ounce hitters too. The very tall, as we’ve seen in nearly every young bat size chart, still tend towards shorter and lighter bats. More 11-year-olds swing a 23-ounce bat than an 18-ounce bat. We found only a couple of parents who considered their player excellent that swing a 29-inch, but even fewer of them swing a 32-inch. Almost no parents who took the survey think their child is struggling. But, those that did make a disproportionate amount of the 28-inch bats swung.
We have more commentary on the bat tendencies of 11-year-olds on our best bat for the 11-year-old page.
The right bat drop for a 12-year-old varies a lot among actual users. But, the most common is still a drop 10 in a 30 or 31-inch length. While the players are likely the most comfortable with this size bat since they swung it last year, we think it smart to find a drop 8 in a 31 or 30-inch for any given 12 years old and encourage our players to do so. Our data shows that 12-year-olds are just as happy with a drop 8 than they are a drop 10. Also, it might be tempting to go to a drop 5. Our survey data, shown below, claims that most 12-year-old players using a drop 5 thought it a bit too heavy. Find more details on our best bat for 12-year-olds.
The bat size chart for the 12-year-old is the most complicated by far. The range of typical bat sizes is as big as the range in 12-year-old baseball body types. On average, bats range from 9 ounces different, and no single bat weight has more than 15% of the regular market. It is a marked contrast to, say, the 17-year-old population that coalesces around just a few different bats.
Although there is no clear winner, the two most common bat sizes for 12-year-olds are a 30/20 and a 31/21. But, there are more other sizes than those two combined. There are plenty of happy 32/22, 30/22, 31/23, and 32/24 12-year-old hitters.
In terms of the alluvial chart, there is so much to observe. Excellent players, which make up the bulk of the skill section, swing all types of bats. Powerful players are also split evenly from 21 to 27-ounce bats. Heavy kids tend to stay with 30, 31, and 32, while the average weight section fills up the vast majority of the 29-inch bat section. Weak kids swing lighter bats (no surprise), but, again, very tall kids swing shorter bats (no idea why that keeps being the trend).
The things to notice are endless.
There are plenty of drop 5 30, 31, and 32-inch players. Although the average for the drop five space claims the bats are a little too heavy—there were several who believed the bat’s weights were right on the money.
We discuss more details of the chart with specific bat suggestions in our best bat for the 12-year-old section. But, in terms of the right bat size, we suggest a 12-year-old go to a 31/21 if they have no idea. If they are an above-average skill kid, then a drop 8 in a 31/23 or 32/24 might make a ton of sense too.
In truth, though, most 13-year-old players go to a BBCOR standard. Meaning, they are required to swing a drop 3. Some believe that it makes sense to gradually work up to that and attempt to get into a drop 5 ASAP, so the jump to high school ball and a drop 3 isn’t too painful. That is rational thinking, and we support the idea. That said, a 12-year-old player who can’t hit the ball because his bat is too heavy doesn’t end up playing high school baseball that often anyways. So, sure, a drop 5 makes sense—but only if they can still hit with it.
Based on the data we collected, about 1/3 of all 13-year-olds still play in non-BBCOR leagues. Our data collected about 100 of these individuals and, as you can see in the charts above, the bats tend to run a little light for most. But, there are plenty still finding the right sized fit. We’d suggest, at 13, you look for a drop 5 in a 32. But, based on your skill level, height, weight, and strength, the below might be more directional. You can see more information in our best bat for 13U.
There is plenty to notice in the 13-Year-Old bat sizing space. Almost no players are still using a 29-inch. Very tall players continue to swing shorter bats than their average-sized peers. Excellent players swing a 31-inch way more than 32-inch and way more often than their ‘average skill’ peers who tend to swing a 32-inch more often. Bat weight options are well spread out across several sizes, but the most common is a 26-ounce.
In terms of frequency, there is a massive range of bat sizes in the non-BBCOR 13-year-old bat space.
It turns out, most of the hitters in the non-BBCOR 13-Year-old baseball space think their bat is too light. Those swinging a 30/20 still, a considerable portion, will be surprised when they have to jump to a drop three next year. Only the more significant drop 8′ s, as well as the drop 5’s, appear to appease the growing muscles of 13-year-old baseball players.
We do have an article that discusses bat model specifics in the 13-year-old space here. But, if you want a general recommendation on the size, we stay stick with nothing lighter than a drop eight and shoot for a 32 inch too. A 32/27 is a monster bat and might feel like a big boy bat to begin the year. But, as our data shows, most 32/27 hitters are pretty happy with their bat size—and staying with the bat size that 11 and 12-year-olds prefer doesn’t pack the kind of punch you want to see on a 13-year-old ball field.
Entering the BBCOR bat world calms down the chart lines significantly. Mostly because the BBCOR world only uses drop threes. That is, BBCOR bats come only come in a 34, 33, 32, 31, 30, and 29-inch options. (There are a few companies that use a 32.5 and 33.5 model as well). Those six limited sizing options make the choices easier. See more details on our best bat for a 13U travel player.
Note, for this data. We removed wood bats, which, we realize, are BBCOR approved. We also removed the 32.5 and 33.5 length options, although we did have them in our survey. There were too few 32.5 and 33.5 responses to make the data meaningful, so we removed them and showed you the whole numbers, as it were, below.
We are most surprised at how few 13-year-old BBCOR players go for the 29/26. There are only a few companies that offer as much. But, considering many of the non-BBCOR counterparts we document above prefer a 23 or 24-ounce bat, you’d think more would be excited for a 26-ounce in BBCOR. But, that short 29-inch barrel drives a lot to look to the 30-inch.
That said, we are also surprised to see that most 13-year-old BBCOR players swing 31-inch or 32-inch players than 30-inch players. About just as many use a 33-inch BBCOR than a 30-inch. At 13, that surprises us. As well, only as many 13-year-olds are using 31/28 as the area 32/29 is surprising.
For the 13-year-old BBCOR player, it appears most have found the bat that suits them well. Even though there are several 33/30 hitters, they did rate their bat as feeling it was the right weight for them. This range makes it hard to recommend a particular size for a BBCOR bat and a 13-year-old. The fact the 31 and 32-inch have the same dominant frequency makes us stay in that realm. If you’re aren’t quite sure which bat to get, then we’d say lean towards to the 32-inch so it might last you through your 14 year season too.
In terms of the best BBCOR bat for you, we have an entire article dedicated to that conversation.
The 14-year-old BBCOR bat size chart is spread equally across the 31, 32, and 33-inch space with a slight edge to the 32-inch BBCOR bat. Like our other ages and categories, few specific traits determine the type of bat they should swing. For example, Strong players are just as likely to swing a 29-ounce bat as they are a 30-ounce bat (with maybe a little bit of a trend towards the 30-ounce). Outstanding 14-year-old players swing a 31, 32, and 33 inches in almost equal numbers. We suggest you find the variable or two which describes you best and go for the in the middle. Which, for most 14-year-olds, would be a 32/29 BBCOR bat.
Notice, as well, that tall players still tend to swing short bats. The connection between tall people and short bats has been the case forever. In fact, from the 100 surveys, we collected on 14-year-old BBCOR players the ones considered ‘tall’ were the ONLY ones that made up the 30″ inch bat space. Short players tended towards the longer bats. We find this observation fascinating, and it holds for basically every age group. Do smaller players feel they need more reach with a longer bat while taller players don’t quite care? The data doesn’t tell us.
The 32/29 BBCOR bat is the most popular bat for a 14-year-old. No surprised there. However, we did find, on average, the 33/30 rated as a bit too heavy for enough players to move into the ‘little too heavy’ category. That does not mean it was a ‘little too heavy’ for everyone. But, instead, that, on average, those who swung a 33/30 thought it was a bit much. It could be the right size for you, and the alluvial diagram above should help clear that up.
Of some note, no 14-year-old we surveyed has begun swinging a 34-inch bat just. As will be shown, there aren’t very many 17-year-olds doing the same. In fact, at 14, the 32/29 becomes a great go-to size for the next three years and, assuming the durability and pop is intact, the bat might serve an entire high school career.
If you want some specific model recommendations, then check our best BBCOR bats section.
The average 15-year-old swings a 32/29 BBCOR baseball bat. There are more 33/30’s than 31/28’s, but there are enough 31-inch BBCORs to consider them still. Our survey of over 75 15-year-old BBCOR players is broken down by height, weight, strength, and skill as well as bat size popularity and how happy the players are with their choice.
Like every age group we surveyed, very tall players tend to swing shorter bats. Tall players rarely swing more significant bats when compared to the ‘average’ and ‘short.’ We are not quite sure why this is, but the data is so prevalent in each age set that it is impossible to ignore.
Of some note too, those who consider themselves excellent baseball players use a 32/29 way more often than a 33/30, and almost every one of those that believe themselves struggling swing a 33/30. So, when in doubt, swing the 32/29.
A bat size chart for a 16-year-old is way more straightforward than that of a 12-year-old. We measured both and below report the findings on a 16-year-old’s bat size chart. In short, the majority are using a 33/30 with a close second to a 32/29. Of the over 50 16-year-olds we surveyed, not one swung a 31-inch. There were several which claim to swing a 34-inch BBCOR bat, and their survey data suggested they were perfectly fine with the size too.
In terms of trends and predictive value, the only real market we see is that short players tend to prefer the 33 over the 32. As well, those that consider themselves excellent make up the vast majority of the 34-inch 16-year-old BBCOR market. There are no powerful players that want a 32-inch, and very light players only want a 32-inch.
You’ll find the 33/30 at the plate in a 16-Year-old’s hands about 15% more than the 32/29. 34/31 BBCOR bats for 16-year-olds are rare, but the users claim to be the same amount of happiness. If you’re looking for the best BBCOR bat for a 16-year-old, we suggest you check out our best BBCOR bats article. In terms of sizing, we say stick with a 33/30 as a 16-year-old if you’re not sure where you land. A 31 will be way too light and save the 34-inch for next year, maybe.
If you jumped to this section of the article, you might like to know that we surveyed thousands of baseball players. We categorized them by age and built charts to explain how bat sizes divide. The categories we used were height, weight, skill level, and strength. You can follow along in this alluvial diagram as to what BBCOR bat 17-year-olds use most often.
The 17-year-old bat size chart is the cleanest of them all. Of some note, not a single player considered themselves ‘tall’ in this group of our surveys. We aren’t sure why that is–maybe it is just the luck of the draw. But, as we’ve observed elsewhere, most athletes believe themselves to be shorter than average—not taller than average. We also found the fact that no player who considered themselves an ordinary skill 17-year-old swings a 32-inch.
By 17 years old, everyone has figured out the bat size they like. The three bat sizes in the chart above (which the 17-year-old players use) had the closest grouping of happiness in any age category. Not surprising.
If you want to get a better feel for what models we think are best, then check out our best BBCOR bats page. In terms of the best size for a 17-year-old, we’d suggest going with your gut as you would know best at this point in your career. If this is the first time you’ve played and you need advice, we say go with the 33/30. If that doesn’t work, then borrow a teammates 32/29.
Like us, you’ve likely concluded that bat size charts are, at best, guesswork. An honest bat size chart wouldn’t have numbers as much as it would principles.
Much to the surprise of many, there are THREE different weights for every bat you pick up. They are the Stated Weight, the Actual Weight, and the Swing Weight. The stated weight is what the manufacturer claims the bat should weigh. The Actual weight is what the bat weighs (which is often not the stated weight). The swing weight is a measurement of how much power it takes to swing the bat.
All bat size charts fail in that they make recommendations on bats without respect to swing weight.
From a hitting performance perspective, the only thing that matters is swing weight. Yet, in bewildering fashion, the general public doesn’t have access to swing weights. Instead, we are left to consider the stated weight of the bat, which is often inaccurate from the actual weight—neither of which would give you the swing weight.
As such, for example, a 30/27 BBCOR bat of any particular bat model may not have the same total weight as another 30/27 BBCOR. Even if the two bats did have the same total weight, they might not have the same swing weight. Due to the distribution of the bat’s total weight along its length.
In other words, not only is it likely that two different model bats with the same stated weight weigh differently, but how their weight distributes along the length of the barrel makes the two bats swing weights often remarkably different.
If that concept of swing weight and total weight needs more clarification, imagine swinging a sledgehammer with the hammer portion in your hands with the handle as your bat. The sledgehammer, you could imagine, swings rather quickly. Now turn the imaginary sledgehammer around and swing by holding on the handle. Such a feat is much more difficult. The sledgehammer didn’t change it’s total weight at all, but it did change its swing weight. That swing weight changed because you moved the balance point of the object from more towards your hands to more towards the end. As such, the swing weight changes by adjusting the distribution of the weight along the bat’s axis.
Sadly, at the moment, no manufacturer is actively publishing their swing weights (often referred to as the mass moment of inertia or M.O.I.). The only way that we know is on our datasheet list. We also show you how to calculate your own on this YouTube video.4 Biggest Fastpitch Barrels »