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By Bat Digest | Last Updated June 15, 2022
DeMarini is very serious about fast-pitch softball bats. So severe, they make more fastpitch softball iterations than any other specific bat line manufactured by the company. For 2016 there are seven different types of CF8 fastpitch bats. (In contrast, the extremely popular baseball CF7 only comes in 6).
We’ve worked with these bats for the last few days to get a feel for them. All the feedback we’ve received from elite fastpitch players, and our own experience, is the CF8 fastpitch line is legit. These are top-shelf performance bats with enough iterations to make any player feel at home at the plate.
Demarini’s CF8 fastpitch class is robust with a legit fit for any player we can dream up. It has an end and balanced loads, sled hammer feels, ultra handle swing weights, reversed grips for left-handers, and extended barrels for slappers. The Drop 11 will be a mainstay at the plate in recreation and younger leagues. Drop nine will find its way to many plate appearances at the highest levels of the sport.
The only real concerns are the top-shelf bat price, but those who’ve paid attention to this space understand this is how it rolls. Another consideration may be that players who use the drop 11 will suffer from durability issues if they start seeing stiffer competition.
Yet despite those minor misgivings, the bat line is highly recommendable as long as you can find the right fit for your style of play. The two-piece composite bats with the D-fusion handle are proven workhorses in the space, and anyone looking for a top-shelf fast pitch softball bat will find themselves right at home with the 2016 CF8 from DeMarini.
This first drop 10 (WTDXCFP) is designed for hitters who prefer lighter swing weight—which is most. This bat has the improved D-Fusion handle for a better feel at contact, as well as a slightly oversize barrel and the sweet spot for maximum advantage.
We would suspect this bat to have the most play this year because the broader audience prefers a light swinging top-shelf two-piece composite bat with the added durability the drop 11 doesn’t offer.
The second 2016 CF8 drop 10 fastpitch bat is the Insane (WTDXCFI). This bat is the same as the bat directly above but with a more significant load toward the end cap. This change in balance point gives the bat more of a sledgehammer feel which many hitters, especially those who hit for power, often prefer.
The third drop 10 in the 2016 lineup, and the new iteration of fastpitch softball bats for DeMarini, is the ‘Slapper’ (WTDXCFA). This unique and impressive bat has an oversize barrel with an ultra-light swing weight built for left-handers who slap the ball.
The bat also has a reverse spiraled grip to prevent bunching that left-handed with lots of at-bats understand all too well. (Slapper Pricing Here).
The Slapper is the lightest swinging bat (by way of swing weight) that DeMarini makes in the fastpitch space and is tailored to the left-handed hitter whose purpose in life is to get on base.
It should also be noted that this bat is not well suited for power hitters as an oversized barrel and massive hand load could cause durability and distance concerns. Left-handers in the drop 10 space looking for more beef should see the drop 10 Insane above.
The fourth (and pink) CF8 Drop, 10 Fastpitch bat from DeMarini (WTDXCFH), is a breast cancer awareness bat nicknamed ‘Hope.’ This bat nearly identical to the balanced drop 10 above (WTDXCFP) with the apparent exception of the color and some changes to the end cap for design. ‘Hope’ is a light swinging bat built for a player who likes balanced swings and great versatility–and likes pink/purple/breast cancer awareness softball paraphernalia.
The drop 11 (WTDXCFS) will always be the most popular fastpitch bat simply because it is the lightest. The bat serves the larger market of younger players who prefer a top-shelf two-piece composite bat with a light swing weight.
The drop 11 is not NCAA approved because its durability isn’t built for that level of impact. It is, however, made for younger players looking for lots of bats and little swing weight from a top-shelf bat company. It is a two-piece composite design with DeMarini’s famed 2.0 D-Fusion handle to make mishits less stingy.
Designed for elite power hitters, the CF8 Drop 8 (WTDXCF8) is the heaviest model in the 2016 line. It is built for clean-up hitters who can generate power. The barrel is shorter than other CF8 fastpitch iterations, which is often a preference for those who like a concentrated sweet spot for maximum drive and passion.
The drop 8 version is the only bat in the 2016 lineup that does not have the D-Fusion handle. Instead, the handle and transition are stiffer than the other bats to serve those hitters who understand that sting on mishits is a small price to pay for added power.
Pricing looks to be the best right here.
This drop 9 CF8 fastpitch bat (WTDXCFF) is for elite hitters who need more nerve than a drop ten but want the forgiving nature of a D-Fusion which the drop eight does not have. This bat should fit well with heavy-hitting Division 1 and High School hitters that prefer a smoother hit with the more petite ring.
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.