5 Best Softball Bats For Beginner Fastpitch Players (6U and 8U)
Is it time to be looking for a new softball bat for your 6U or 8U youth? This would usually be bats appropriate for 5-year-olds, 6-year-olds, 7-year-olds, and 8-year-olds. Are you wanting to skip the hours of research that it takes to figure out the best bats that you should consider? If your answer is “yes” then you’re in the right spot! Bat buying is not the most enjoyable task to tackle, but it’s something that we all must do since new softball players are always joining teams, and the current players are outgrowing their last season’s model. So relax and take a look through the models that we highly recommend for the younger players.
Just to make it clear, we firmly believe that the best way to find the right bat is by swinging it. If you’re interested in a bat you see on here, try and find somewhere local to demo the bat before purchasing it.
When buying your 6U or 8U player a bat, you must first decide what size and type of bat she should be hitting.
What To Look For In A Bat
There are a few things you need to consider when looking for the right softball bat.
When buying a bat, if you get a bat that is too long it can sometimes be very difficult for your child to swing. Conversely, you don’t want a bat that is too short for your child either. A good rule of thumb to remember is that a child under 60 pounds will usually do best with a bat between 26″-29″ and a child over 60 pounds will do best with a bat between 28″-32″. For a child just starting out, if they are in the 3′-3’4″ height range then 26″ is a good starting length for their first bat. For every 4-5″ that they grow, you should add 1″ to their bat length.
After you have figured out the proper length of bat for your child, the next thing you should consider is the weight of the bat. A bat that is too heavy will cause a much slower “draggy” swing with poor control that results in bad contact or all-out strikes. When looking at bats, you will notice that many bats won’t show the actual weight but instead will show the drop weight. The drop weight is the difference between the length of the bat and the weight of the bat. In other words LENGTH – WEIGHT = DROP WEIGHT. For example, a bat that is 27″ and has a weight of 17oz would have a drop weight of -10. For 6U and 8U players, you will most likely be looking at bats with a (-13.5)-(-10) drop with the consideration that their bat is between 24″-29″.
Every league has its own rules regarding what is and isn’t allowed pertaining to equipment. When it comes to bats, the manufacturer stamps the bats with the logo of whatever certification that bat has. If you’re not sure if the bat you’re looking at is approved for your league then you should check with the coaches or read the league’s rule book to make sure the bat you are considering is allowed before purchasing it.
There are 3 main types of materials that softball bats are made out of. Alloy bats, Composite bats, and Hybrids bats (which are basically a mix of the two with the handle being composite and the barrels being alloy). Here we will show a few pros and cons of each material to help you decide which bat will work best for your child.
Usually much less expensive than composite bats
Ready to use at purchase, no break-in required
Often outlasts a composite bat since they usually don’t crack (instead they dent). A composite bat is unusable once cracked.
Alloy usually has a smaller sweet spot and less pop than a composite bat
Less sting on your hands from mis-hit balls due to the reduced vibration in these bats
Larger sweet spot and more pop than an alloy bat
Bats require a break-in period
More expensive than alloy bats
– Hybrid Pros
Usually cost less than a full composite bat
No break-in period
Less sting and vibration due to the composite handle
Longer barrel life than a composite (due to the barrel end being alloy)
Costs more than a full alloy bat
Handle can be susceptible to cracking
Not always legal in every league
Now that you understand the differences in all the bat types, you should check out our top picks for softball bats for young, beginner players.
Best Bats For Beginner Softball Players
Best Aluminum Bat
Easton Pink Sapphire (-10) Softball Bat NEWER VERSION
The Easton Pink Sapphire is a -10 drop alloy bat that is great for beginners entering into softball. We recommend this softball bat due to its extremely affordable price, great durability, and many happy players (and parents) that have gotten this exact bat for their little ones. For young players, you can’t go wrong with this bat.
Best Budget Bat
Easton Pink Sapphire (-10) Softball Bat OLDER VERSION
It just so happens that our budget pick is almost the same bat as above and it even shares the same name. It is just the older version of the Easton Pink Sapphire. If you’re looking for a good deal on a bat, as of writing, this version of the Sapphire will save you a few bucks and still give your player a great bat.
Best Composite Bat (TIE)
Two bats took the top spot for best full composite bat for beginners
Louisville Slugger Proven (-13) Fastpitch Softball Bat
The Louisville Slugger Proven is a very light swinging bat due to it’s -13 drop weight. Good bat for those ready to swing a longer 29″ bat, but don’t quite have the strength to handle a heavier bat. One-piece design.
Demarini Spryte (-12) Fastpitch Softball Bat
A great-looking bat with fantastic performance to match. Good for those that can handle just a tad bit more swing weight than the Proven’s drop 13. Two-piece composite design.
Overall Best Bat
First off, I want to make it clear that if your player does not have solid swing mechanics yet, then don’t spend your money on this bat. Instead, spend your money on lessons from a good coach or instructor. However, for a solid hitter, this is the bat that can help take those hits to the next level!
2023 DeMarini CF (-11) Fastpitch Softball Bat
The DeMarini CF line has always been well-known for being a solid bat for younger players. It usually can keep it’s pop for years and offers great durability. Those with a solid swing can take advantage of the pop from it’s large sweet spot.
Hopefully, those recommendations have helped you find a great bat for your younger players.
One recommendation that we have (and we always did this when our girls were younger) is to let them make their bat theirs by putting on whatever grip tape suits their style. At that age, they aren’t always 100% focused on the mechanics of the game. Sometimes they just want some cool-looking gear too. We’ve also included some of our favorite grip tapes below in case you decide that would be a good addition to their new bat.
Tip: The thicker the grip tape, the less sting from miss-hits.
Vulcan Bat Grip Tape
This is our “go-to” grip tape over the years. There are many different designs. It holds up well, is nice and grippy and comes at a great price.
ALIEN PROS Bat Grip Tape
Alien Pros is also well known for making quality grip tape with great designs and a good price.
Now go out a play some softball!!
Time to pick up your player a softball-related gift? If so, then check out our 41 Best Softball Gifts and Presents For Girls