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Best Bats | best-youth-baseball-bats

9+ Best Youth Baseball Bats we Hit the Farthest [2021 Updates]

By Bat Digest | Last Updated January 15, 2021

We’ve hit with every youth bat for 2021 (and 2020 through 2014). We think the best youth baseball bat currently available is the Marucci CAT 9 for USSSA or the Easton ADV 360 Drop 11 for USA. We talk more about why we think so below.

What’s the best youth baseball bat?

The best youth baseball bat depends, entirely, on what you mean by “Youth Bat.”

Are we talking about the top-rated USA Baseball Bats or the big barrel bats folks like the most?

Jump to the full list below.

Best Youth Baseball Bats Articles

Category (Click for Full Article)Bat
Best USA Bat2020 Easton ADV Drop 11
Best Big Barrel USSSA Bats2020 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Cheap USA BatsSlugger Omaha
Best Drop 5 Bat2017 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Drop 8 Bat2020 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Drop 10 Bat2020 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Drop 12 Bat2020 DeMarini Sabotage
Best Tee Ball BatsAxe Hero
Best Coach Pitch BatMarucci CAT 8 JBB
Best Bat for 6-Year-OldEaston S3 25/15
Best Bat for 7-Year-OldJBB 2020 CF Zen
Best Bat for 8-Year-OldRawlings VELO Hybrid
Best Bat for 9-Year-Old2020 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Bat for 10-Year-Old2020 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Bat for 11-Year-Old2020 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Bat for 12-Year-Old2020 DeMarini CF Zen
Best Youth Wood BatsSam Bats CD1
Best Bat 13 Year Old2017 CF Zen Drop 5

2020 DeMarini CF Zen Cage Side Hitting

Why the 2020 DeMarini CF Zen?

3 Reasons:

  1. The bat is available in every little league baseball bat size you can imagine. It comes in a drop 5, drop 8, drop 10 as well as a USSSA version and a USA Bat option too.
  2. The feel on mishits is unmatched. DeMarini’s 3-Fusion handle is a thing of beauty, and every hitter who has tested this bat is in love.
  3. Exit speeds always look fantastic with the CF Zen, and the balance point is right in the wheelhouse that young players prefer.

Here’s one of our reader’s testimonial on the drop 2019 USSSA youth CF Zen.

Best Youth Baseball Bat Testimonial

See all our reader’s reviews

Why NOT the 2018/19 DeMarini CF Zen?

3 Reasons:

  1. It is not inexpensive. It is just flat expensive. There are other bats in the youth space as expensive, but none higher.
  2. The recent track record for CF Zen’s staying legal is not so hot. The 2017 youth CF Zen got banned in several sizes, and even the 2018 CF Zen was nipped.
    Granted, DeMarini does allow their purchases to trade in their bats. But, that doesn’t mean it isn’t convenient. Some who were inconvenienced by the bat banning has taken it out on DeMarini on social media.
  3. Some younger hitters prefer single piece bats, aluminum barrels, or two-piece hybrid bats. If that is you, then this bat won’t be a good fit.

Here’s one of our readers that is not impressed with the USA CF Zen’s barrel size:

Best Youth Baseball Bat

User Votes on the best Youth Bats

We asked over 2,000 of our readers their thoughts on the best youth bats. We document the responses in the chart below. Under the USA and USSSA sections, you can see most users use (1) Demarini and (2) Marucci in USSSA. For USA, the race is close, but Slugger, DeMarini, and Easton own a pretty similar market share.

The outer ring of the chart below measures what brand owners (inner circle) think is the best youth bat (outer ring). For example, Marucci USSSA owners think Marucci is best (not surprising). But, you’ll also notice, several Marucci USSSA owners think DeMarini is the best USSSA baseball bat (maybe unexpected).

Best Youth Baseball Bats

9 Best Youth Baseball Bats Ever

Of course, we made a best-ever list. The below bats are rarely in stock new anymore. You’ll need to go to eBay to find them.

1. Best Ever: BZ1-C Sc500 Easton Redline  Drop 5

Best Youth Baseball Bat


Price check the SC500

Some may argue over this as the first pick. Still, if the order of the top 9 best youth baseball bats is decided on secondary market value, then the Redline ZCore with the now-famous SC500 aluminum/scandium alloy—is the winner. The bat appreciates in value, and now, after over ten years on the market, only used models can be found. They price well over $500, and often well into the $600 range. It’s a drop 5 or drop 8 and an adult/middle school bat. The Easton SC500 is a full aluminum single piece bomb-dropping fool. The bat is, as you can imagine, banned in high-school and NCAA. The drop 5, we submit, is the best bat on the planet.

ThDrop 5 CF is the only bat we can find that appreciates. It has become the Michael Jordan Rookie Card of little league baseball bats–often fetching well into the thousands of dollars for used bats. It is, at least these days, challenging to find. Even eBay searches like this often turn up nothing.

They are said to last forever (at least by those trying to sell them), have a pop that would impress your grandmother, and for those willing to get out a small bank loan to purchase a little league bat, will hit your favorite pitch somewhere into the Pacific Ocean.

2. Best 2 1/4 Youth Bat: 2014 Easton MAKO Youth

Best Youth Baseball Bat


In the last decade, no bat has changed the game like the Easton MAKO in the 2 1/4 youth barrel. Easton dominated the BPF 1.15 space in the 2 1/4 barrel in 2014, and many argue, they still do today. The Orange MAKO was a man among boys 18 months before other bats began to close the gap. Other bats have arguably caught up to the 2014 MAKO’s impressiveness. But, at the time, the MAKO was the best youth barrel bat on the market—and it wasn’t even close.

3. Best Big Barrel: CF Zen Drop 8 2 3/4

Best Youth Baseball Bat


The CF8 2 3/4 Drop 10 is a tough bat to find—and there is a reason for that. The CF8 from 2016 is the best big barrel bat somewhat readily available on the market today. However, the fact it is driving such a premium price might give you a reason to visit our full list of best youth big barrel bats.

Yet even despite the ridiculous price points on the bat, people willing to spend that much may not be crazy. Durability has always been a serious concern with the drop 10 CF8, but the bat flat out rakes.

A good substitute for the drop 10 CF8 may be the new CF Zen. We discuss that more below.

4. Best Aluminum Barrel: 2006/2007 Anderson Techzilla

Best Youth Baseball Bat


The original version of the Anderson Techzilla circa 2006 and 2007 was
(and is) a valid bomb dropper. A double-walled two-piece 2 1/4 alloy bat with enough pop to make a sailor blush, but this bat squarely in the top 9 best youth baseball bats ever. You can still buy them used for around $200, and we suggest, like
the Combat B1 and B2 above, it’s worth every penny.

This bat swings like a hot knife through butter, and if the game was on the line and we were at the plate with two outs and the bases loaded, there are few other friends we’d want in our grip than this sweet swinging lady with a punch like Ali. The Techzilla makes a bad hitter good, a good hitter tremendous, and a great hitter the king of the league.

The only problem is the bat is not legal in very many leagues anymore. But, if you happen to be in one, and like the feel of dynamite in your hands, then figure out a way to get this bad boy.

5. Best Drop 5: 2015 DeMarini CF7 Drop 5

Best Youth Baseball Bat


The 2015 Drop 5 DeMarini CF7 is an amazing stick. Once you hit with you, you can’t stop thinking about it. It is the perfect combination of balance and power. In terms of the best drop 5 bat that is somewhat readily available on the market today, this
is our choice. If you’d like some cheaper and more readily available options, then you will like our best drop 5 bats article.

The drop 5 CF7 is smooth on contact. Butter like drives in the gaps is one-hopped to the wall. Hanging a ball in the zone and the bat nearly crackles at the ball before driving it into the stratosphere. The bat has a middle range balance point on the
barrel and is an earth-shattering blast at full contact. It’s hard to miss with its overextended barrel.

Since it is not held back by BBCOR standards, we think it’s the biggest hitting baseball bat you can still buy new in wrapper today. The drop 5 CF7 is an unashamed grizzly bear bat made to destroy baseballs, home run records, and pitchers’ confidence.

6. Best Drop 8: Marucci CAT 7

Best youth baseball bats

We have hit with drop 8 bats more than any other line or niche of bats. Many, including the CF ZEN and Beast, are fantastic. But the Marucci CAT 7, with its single-piece feel and beautiful ping pop, is our favorite. We have yet to find a player that
can swing a drop 8 correctly who does not just love the bat.

The CAT 7 comes in several other sizes too. The BBCOR is also one of our favorites, and so is the drop 10 JBB version. But, the drop 8, tops our list of best drop 8 baseball bats.

We also love the CAT 7 because the price point is at least a little more manageable than other top-tiered bats. Those who swing the CAT 7 drop 8 will never go back.

7. Best Drop 10: DeMarini CF Zen

Best Youth Baseball Bat

For much the same reason, the CF8 is our best overall big barrel bat; the CF Zen is our specific drop 10 winners. The 2 5/8 version of the Zen is outlawed in USSSA in the drop 8 versions. As well, the 2 3/4 drop 10 CF Zen is not legal there. Somehow, the drop 10 CF Zen passed the test. And, it turns out, the bat is an absolute ball killer.

We have an entire article discussing the best drop 10 bats. You may find those helpful if you are not up for spending the money required to acquire the CF Zen. But if total cost is not an object, the CF Zen is the best drop 10 on the market.

8. Best Drop 12 Bat: 2017 Rawlings VELO Composite

Best Big Barrel Bat

Rawlings makes a version of the VELO called the VELO composite. This bat is a two-piece composite bat and built much differently than the traditional single-piece hybrid VELO. But, the drop 12 is a fantastic bat for the kid looking for as much bat control and speed as possible with a reasonable and over-sized barrel. There are a handful of good drop 12 bats. Our best drop 12 bat article sums them up nicely. So, if you are looking for more options and price points, head over there. On the whole, we would take the VELO for its ultra-light drop 12 swing and legitimate price point over just about any bat in that specific class.

9. Best Youth Wood Bat: Marucci AP5

Best Youth BAseball Bats

It is difficult, at best, to narrow down the best youth wood baseball bats. This difficulty stems from the fact that no bat company has a patent on maple or ash trees. As such, just about anyone can buy a high-quality wood billet from a major supplier and then put it on their lathe. Some minutes later, boom, you’ll have beautiful ash or maple bats. That said, we do have an affinity for the AP5 from Marucci. At the pro level, it is one of the most popular turn patterns.

The maple is as good as you can get anywhere. The brand name that stands behind it is the most popular MLB bat. In other words, it is tough to go wrong with a youth wood AP5 from Marucci.

Common Questions About the Best Youth Baseball Bats

How Do You Determine the Best Youth Baseball Bats?

We spend considerable time using the bats we review on this site. We are not, as so many are, merely parroting lists from Amazon or other major vendors’ bestsellers lists. Our reviews take on serious research by players and parents. Often, we discuss our findings with significant vendors and several manufacturers. Throughout that process, bats in each category tend to rise to the top of the lists. That said, we are the first to admit that our recommendations are not foolproof. Indeed, the best for most is not the best bat for all. We are hopeful our insights are once piece of the puzzle for you in determining the best youth baseball bat.

Are Youth Bats and Little League Bats the Same?

We should blame the industry for the confusion. There is an entire swath of young players that play youth baseball in Little League organized leagues. Notice the capital L’s. Those leagues put their own set of requirements on the bats. Including, for example, a 2 1/4 inch max barrel diameter. But, there is also an even more significant swath of players that we call Youth players. But, they do not play in leagues affiliated with Little League. As such, the youth bats they use are not the same as the youth bats Little League uses. 2 1/4 baseball bats are called Youth Bats. But, 2 5/8 or 2 3/4 barrel bats are called Youth Big Barrel Bats. It is confusing. But, in the end, Youth Bats and Little League bats are not always the same.

What Size Youth Baseball Bat Should I get?

We cover the way to size a bat correctly on our bat size chart page. It is too long a conversation for a simple paragraph. But there, we give some insights worth considering.

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2 years ago

hey, had a question. Regarding -5 bats… on this page you suggested the CF7 is best ever, but on the -5 page, someone said the 2017 CF Zen is the best option. Hoping you might be able to clarify.

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