So what is a hybrid baseball bat and why would I want to buy one?
A hybrid is a combination of composite and alloy material. The handle is composite and the barrel is alloy. Examples of 2009 Hybrid bats include:
Louisville TPX H2
Nike Aero Fuse (not to be confused with the Aero Fuse CF2)
The lighter composite handle allows the alloy barrel to be made longer than a traditional 100% alloy bat. This increases the “sweet spot” compared to an alloy bat and provides more leeway to the batter. In contrast, a 100% composite has both a composite handle and barrel making the barrel, and “sweet spot”, even larger. Hybrid bats are a good compromise between spending top dollar on a composite or a lower priced alloy bat that doesn’t incorporate the latest technology, or offer advantages to the batter. The cost of a top hybrid bat should be somewhere between a manufacturers top composite and alloy bats.
Never pay the same (or about the same) for a top hybrid as a top composite bat. If the price is close you should absolutely take the composite. Here’s an example: Demarini’s top Adult composite (CF3) has a retail price of $399 and its top hybrid bat (Voodoo Black) is priced at $299. Demarini has two additional hybrids priced at $249 and $199 respectively. On the other hand, Louisville and Easton charge $379 – $399 for their top Adult composite bats and $369 – $379 for their top hybrid bats. This makes absolutely no sense. So, a hybrid is an excellent choice for those looking for new technology and a slight advantage on the competition. Just keep your eyes open and don’t fall into the trap of paying too much.