2018 Louisville Slugger Vapor Youth Bat Review
Our Summary Of The Vapor:
The 2018 Louisville Slugger Vapor was developed for one primary reason - to give USA baseball families the best and ultimate value bat option. This season, the USA bats brought to the market from these bat manufacturers have pricing running as high as $399 before sales tax. Chances are, these expensive youth USA bats will translate into more offensive production for your child, but how many families can afford to spend $450 out the door for a single youth baseball bat? The Louisville Slugger Vapor provides baseball families with an effective youth bat option at a very affordable price. The Vapor USA bat comes with a -9 length/weight ratio featuring a single piece alloy construction composed of Louisville Slugger’s durable 7 Series Alloy. The tip of the barrel encompasses a lightweight end cap giving off an ultra-balanced transfer of energy. This will help your child to create the most level swing attainable. The leather grip wrapped around the 7/8-inch standard handle brings about a super comfortable and traditional feel. For the baseball families who can’t afford to break the bank this season for just one piece of equipment yet still wants their player to utilize a quality youth baseball bat, we highly recommend the Louisville Slugger Vapor USA bat.
Our Review Of The Vapor:
Getting into this evaluation, our team understood the capabilities or lack thereof regarding this USA bat. It’s common knowledge to state that the Vapor will mostly not outhit the Select 718 -5 drop. When parents consider purchasing the Vapor, it will definitely be because of value over performance. We understand that each youth baseball family has a certain budget to spend on youth sports depending on their level of income and living expenses. The Vapor is a great selection for a families' on a lower budget. Ironically, this wallet-friendly youth bat features a -9 drop and is about 40% cheaper than the Louisville Slugger Omaha 518 which has a -10 drop. Both bats do share a few commonalities however:
- They both house a single piece alloy construction
- They both carry a balanced swing weight
- They both feature 2 5/8" big barrel
- They both are approved for play in all USA Baseball organizations
The following are the major differences between each one:
- Composed of different types of alloy material
- Vapor comes in a -9 while the Omaha comes in a -10
- Vapor utilizes a synthetic leather grip while the Omaha utilizes a Lizard Skin grip.
After approximately 300 swings with solid connection, below is our official review of the 2018 Louisville Slugger Vapor USA bat.
Evaluating the pop of the vapor:
The bat didn’t generate the same distance as most other USA bats, however our staff was very impressed with line drive production. For being a $60 dollar bat, we definitely think it's a bat that performs for every dollar spent. One of our volunteers mentioned, “This bat didn't get me any home runs, but it was easy to swing. The sweet spot is big too compared to last season too.”
OFFICIAL SCORE: 7 / 10
Calculating the Vibration Control of the Vapor:
As we stated earlier, the Vapor houses a single piece aluminum construction. As a general rule of thumb, most single piece aluminum youth bats don’t protect against vibrations as well as two piece bats. 30% of our volunteers who swung the Vapor felt some stinging in their hands when pitches were coming in at 50 miles per hour or higher. When the pitching machine launched baseballs from 40 mph - 50 mph, approximately 15% of players felt unwanted stings. Most other bats fended off shock much better than it did.
OFFICIAL SCORE: 7 / 10
Assessing the Grip & Comfort of the Vapor:
Overall, the majority of players who swung the Vapor had positive things to say regarding the grip and overall comfort. The standard 7/8” handle wrapped in the synthetic leather grip coupled with the traditional feel of a single piece aluminum construction translated to our hitters, a smooth and level swing. Apart from the occasional vibration, it seemed to work comfortably for most hitters. We did receive a fairly good comment however: “The Vapor bat had a cool wrap and easy to grip. It was lighter than I expected and fun to swing in the cage.”
OFFICIAL SCORE: 7 / 10
Measuring the Durability of the Vapor:
At its price point, the Vapor IS durable. It withstood almost 300+ swings without any major dents or dings. Although the other USA bats showcased less wear and tear with the same amount of punishment, surface scratches and other markings SHOULD be expected. We think it should definitely hold up (cosmetically speaking) for a few seasons.
OFFICIAL SCORE: 7.5 / 10
Determining the Overall Experience of the Vapor:
As mentioned before, we feel like it should be a consideration for value, not for achieving optimum performance. If your baseball budget allows for spending more than a few hundred dollars on a USA bat, other Louisville Slugger’s like the Select 718 or the Solo 618 will definitely deliver better results at the plate. If your child is new to baseball or you don’t want to spend more than $100 for a quality alloy USA bat, the Vapor is definitely one to consider.
OVERALL SCORE: 7.125 / 10