baseball bats for 13 year olds

Selecting the right baseball bat plays an important role in the player’s overall performance on the field. Although there are similarities, there are a couple of differences between selecting a bat for a 13-year-old versus a younger baseball player. One of the main differences is the drop weight of the bat and at this point in the player’s career, they might prefer a one-piece over a two-piece construction or vice versa. Another difference might be the feel of the bat and whether that bat is balanced or end-loaded. Lastly, the 13-year-old age group is an in-between age for baseball players. Luckily for you, we have an assortment of Senior League and BBCOR Certified bats for you to check out. 

In this article, we’ll cover:

The 13-year-old age group can be tricky when deciding on a bat as some players will swing a bat with a -5 drop weight and others will swing a BBCOR Certified -3 drop weight bat in preparation for high school. This chart will help the decision-making process for someone who is not sure which drop weight, while also considering the player’s height and weight.

Weight59”” - 61.4”61.4” - 63”
100 lbs or less31” / 26 oz32” / 27 oz
100 lbs - 145 lbs31” / 28 oz32” / 29 oz

With some 13-year-old hitters using a -5 drop weight and some using a -3 drop weight, it is important to consider the length, swing weight, and materials used when selecting a bat. For a smaller player, it is ok to stay with the -5 drop weight to give the player another year to grow and get stronger before high school baseball. Thus, a 31” 26 oz bat or a 32” 27 oz bat would be ideal. Along with this, if the player is swinging a -5, they can choose any swing weight they prefer such as a balanced bat or an end-loaded bat. 

For a 13-year-old who is looking to make the jump to the BBCOR Certified -3 drop weight, it is recommended that they stay with a 31” or 32” bat. Since this is a big step for players in this age group, it would also be a good idea to choose a bat with a balanced swing weight. This will provide them with a better opportunity to catch up to pitches and not feel like the bat is too heavy. Along the same lines, choosing a one-piece bat might also help the player control the bat head and increase bat speed as compared to a two-piece bat.

Baseball Bat Length for a 13 Year Old

As discussed above, a 13-year-old should swing either a 31” or 32” bat whether it is a -5 drop weight or a -3 drop weight. If you are still not sure about a proper bat length or if you believe you need a longer bat than a 32” there is a way to check. Let’s walk you through this process step-by-step.

  1. Place the knob of the bat at the center of the player’s chest and point it to either side
  2. Have the player raise their arms straight to the side of their body
  3. The bat and arm should be parallel to one another
  4. If the player can comfortably reach their fingertips to the end cap, the bat is a proper length

Baseball Bat Weight for a 13 Year Old

Choosing the right bat weight can be tough for the 13-year-old age group. Some players will be swinging -5 drop weight bats while some will also swing -3 drop weight bats. For the player who is still waiting on a growth spurt or developing their hitting skills, it is recommended that they swing a -5 drop weight bat. While most hitters in this group will swing a 31” 26 oz bat or 32” 27 oz bat, there will be a select few that swing a 33” 28 oz bat. This will depend on the height and strength of the hitter and if they are able to pass the bat length test, as stated in the previous section, with a 33” bat. 

If the player is bigger and strong enough to catch up to pitches with a -3 drop weight bat then I would recommend going with this drop weight. This will only help them with the transition to high school baseball where all players are required to swing a -3 BBCOR Certified bat. Most 13-year-olds with a -3 drop weight will be swinging 31” 28 oz bats and 32” 29 oz bats at this age group as this provides a good transition from -5 to -3.

Bat Drop for a 13-Year-Old’s Baseball Bat

Bat drop refers to the difference between the length and the weight of a baseball bat. For example, if a bat is 32” and 27 oz then the bat would feature a -5 drop weight. When deciding on a drop weight for a 13-year-old, the player or parent can decide between a -5 drop weight or a -3 drop weight. As the player is only one year away from playing high school baseball where it is required to swing a -3 BBCOR Certified bat, some 13-year-olds will be swinging a -3 drop weight. 

On the other hand, if a player is not as big or still waiting on their growth spurt it might be a better idea to opt for the -5 drop weight bat. This will allow for the player to grow, get stronger, and develop their hitting skills another year before making the jump to a -3 BBCOR Certified bat. Either way, a player needs to be able to get the bat around on pitches and should decide on a drop weight that will not inhibit their performance on the field.

General Bat Sizing Wave Chart for 13 Year Olds

Deciding between bat sizes and weight drop for a 13-year-old can be a bit confusing. To get a better visual on sizing a 13-year-old with a baseball bat, this wave chart will show the ranges dependent on the player’s size. 2-3 sentence paragraph introducing the chart similar to this one adapted for 13-year-olds.

League Rules and Requirements for Baseball Bats

Researching league rules and regulations for a bat is very important, especially in the 13-year-old age group as players are using both drop weights of -5 and -3. While different tournaments may feature different requirements, one consistency is that all -5 baseball bats must feature a 1.15 Bat Performance Factor (BPF) stamp and all -3 baseball bats must feature a BBCOR Certification. In order to be legal for play, a bat must feature one of these certification stamps which are dependent on the bat’s drop weight.

Baseball Bat Materials

There are several different materials and constructions on baseball bats that will have advantages and disadvantages. Some materials you may see are alloy, composite, wood, and a combination of alloy and composite which is referred to as a hybrid construction. A one-piece alloy bat will not have as much flex on each swing which will allow the hitter to create greater bat speeds and result in higher exit velocities. A lot of players who are stronger will opt for the one-piece because of the higher exit velocities created. Hence, why these bats are so prevalent in college baseball. One disadvantage of a one-piece alloy bat is that they will not be as forgiving and will not dampen vibration as well on miss-hits. 

A bat with two-piece construction will either feature all composite materials or will include both alloy and composite materials in a hybrid bat. The full-composite material bats will have a lot more flex on each swing, providing a whip-like action on the ball when contact is made. Full-composite bats will also usually have larger sweet spots and be more forgiving on miss-hits as compared to a one-piece alloy bat. A disadvantage of the composite two-piece bat is that the player will not have as much barrel control as with a one-piece bat. A hybrid bat that features a composite handle and alloy barrel will be an in-between option. While these bats will not typically have as much flex on each swing as a two-piece composite bat, they still will feature more flex than a one-piece alloy bat. With a metal bat, the materials are all preferences when deciding for a 13-year-old. However, if a player is looking for bat speed and wanting more barrel control as they make the jump to a -3 BBCOR Certified bat, I would recommend going with a one-piece alloy bat. These bats typically have more balanced swing weight options than a full-composite or hybrid bat. 

Lastly, wood bats can be constructed out of various types of wood. Maple wood is the strongest type of wood used on baseball bats, birch is an in-between wood material that is used, and ash is the least durable but will flex a lot more than a maple wood bat does. For wood bats at this age group, it is recommended that players use a birch or maple wood bat as these will be more durable. Wood bats will have a smaller sweet spot and are a great option for 13-year-olds to train their hitting skills.

Budgeting for Baseball Bat

Although baseball bats can be expensive, there are several great options for anyone looking for a budget baseball bat. One-piece alloy bats will typically be the best option for a budget baseball bat as several companies create great one-piece alloy bats. Marucci’s F5 bat and StringKing’s Metal series bats are great options for anyone looking for a quality bat while on a budget. Price will increase when there is more composite prevalent in the bat. For example, an all-alloy bat will usually be the most affordable, a hybrid bat will be a mid-range budget, and a full-composite bat will typically feature the most expensive bat.

This list of bats for a 13-year-old covers both composite and alloy -5 baseball bats, as well as a great option for a -3 BBCOR Certified bat that will make for an easy transition to the -3 drop weight. As this is an age group getting ready to make the transition to high school baseball, it is important to have different options to ease the transition for the player. The following section will break down these bats and their material, drop weight, and feature a review as well.

Type: Two-piece composite bat

Bat Drop: -5 

Overview: The Marucci CATX Composite (-5) is a great option for the 13-year-old who is between selecting a balanced or end-loaded bat as the CATX Composite is a mid-balanced bat. An ultra-responsive barrel on the CATX Composite is paired with Marucci’s S-40 handle. The S-40 handle is a stiffer composite handle that is designed not to flex as much as a traditional composite handle, thus maximizing energy transfer from the player to the ball.

Key Features:

  • MDX Composite Barrel is ultra-responsive
  • Mid-balanced bat is perfect for someone who doesn’t want a balanced or end-loaded bat
  • S-40 handle creates a stiffer swing to maximize energy transfer

Type: Two-piece composite bat

Bat Drop: -5 

Overview:Rawlings has created one of the hottest bats on the market with the Icon (-5). This two-piece composite bat features a slight end-load and is paired with Rawlings’ In/Tense Carbon Composite barrel. Rawlings has also implemented their Zero Loss Collar to the Icon (-5) which provides the hitter with a 15% stiffer connection between the handle and barrel to eliminate drag and vibration. For a power-hitting 13-year-old, the Rawlings Icon (-5) is a great option.

Key Features:

  • In/Tense Carbon Composite barrel creates one of the hottest bats on the market
  • A slightly end-loaded bat is perfect for the player looking to showcase their power
  • Zero Loss Collar provides a 15% stiffer connection between the handle and barrel to maximize energy transfer

Browse BaseballMonkey Bat Selection for 13 Year Olds

Choosing a bat for a 13-year-old can be a confusing process as the player is only a year away from swinging a BBCOR Certified bat in high school baseball. Whether you are looking for your final Senior League -5 bat before high school or looking to make the jump to a BBCOR Certified bat and get a head start on high school baseball, we have got you covered!