Rarely does a softball bat as important as the DeMarini Steel come around…
I joke, but the 2018 DeMarini Steel is one of those softball bats that every softball player knows about. In fact, in my coed league I have never seen the men use anything but the DeMarini Raw Steel. Why is that? Several reasons which I’ll touch on below.
2016 Raw Steel vs 2018 Steel
First off let’s get the main question out of the way. The 2016 and the 2018 DeMarini Steel are the exact same but with one tiny exception (aside from a different paint job). What is different is the 2018 Steel bats are .50 to .75 ounces heavier than the 2016 Raw Steel. It is not a huge difference, but if you really like the feel of your 2016 Steel we recommending picking one or three up while they are still in stock, because the added weight is ever so slightly noticeable.
2016 vs 2018 Performance
There is no noticeable difference in pop with the 2018 Steel vs the 2016. I have hit both bats extensively, and I can say without a doubt they hit exactly the same.
To my knowledge, DeMarini is the only bat manufacturer making a softball bat with heat treated steel. Using a process called carburizing, the 2018 DeMarini Steel barrel is heated to a certain temperature in a carbon rich environment to make the Steel extremely hard. A hard barrel is supremely important when using a soft/mush ASA softball. Note: the 28oz and 30oz barrel is about 1 inch longer than the barrel on the 26oz. All weights are end loaded for added mass and power through the hitting zone.
Single Wall Barrel
This one is important, too. Many coed softball leagues do not allow men to use composite bats and/or multi-wall bats. The DeMarini Steel is a single wall bat with the ASA stamp on the (super hard) barrel.
DeMarini connects the hard, Steel barrel to a ZNX alloy handle. The alloy metal in the handle is thinner and and more flexible in nature than the barrel. The flex in the handle gives the bat added whip during contact with the ball. The two-piece construction also eliminates hand rattling vibration. I use this bat often, and I have never once experienced sting in my hands.
DeMarini offers a rounded knob on the 2018 Steel for added comfort while swinging. Especially during batting practice.
The new Steel comes with a 1 year warranty against defects, as well as free shipping both ways from CheapBats.com. Batisfaction Guaranteed!