As we continue our series on the best BBCOR models on the market, today we’re going to look at the CAT9 Composite Pastime.
It is a two-piece fully composite bat that is slightly end-loaded and designed for players who are developing power in their game. Because it’s only slightly end-loaded, everyone can use this model.
Our verdict on the CAT9 Composite Pastime BBCOR 4.15
Overall, the Marucci CAT9 Composite Pastime is a solid bat. It performs well and is a good “in-between” model. That is to say it’s not truly end-loaded but it’s also not a balanced model either.
While the bat performs well, we just can’t justify it having a $550 price tag. It’s competitive with other models, but that’s exactly why we’d recommend choosing those other (cheaper) models.
The CAT9 Composite Pastime bat is a great model. It’s made with a multi-directional layer of composite material. That’s a fancy way to say they’ve built it to be responsive and durable.
Marucci also opted to use an outer-locking system (OLS) that improves how stiff the connection is.
The CAT9 Composite Pastime offers a slight padding that is soft on a hitter’s hands. You’ll also find that the sting-free knob really helps to minimize vibration on bad hits.
The only negative that we’ve found is that the handle is a bit thicker than some hitters prefer. The bat doesn’t taper off as quickly as other models.
The CAT9 Composite Pastime stands out for its durability. We’ve seen multiple players and testers use the same bat for close to a thousand swings and it has easily stood up to the test.
No dents, dings, or issues. We’re very happy how well the bat has been able to stand up to constant stress from multiple players.
Quite frankly, the pop doesn’t live up to the price tag. The bat performs about as well as any other BBCOR model that you’ll find, but it really doesn’t stand out.
The issue with the CAT9 isn’t that it lacks pop. The issue is that we expect it to be better than the competition and it just isn’t there.
We always struggle with how to grade out pricing. When we think a bat is priced too high, how much should we deduct in this category?
The CAT9 Composite Pastime is literally the most expensive base model that has ever come to market. The only bat that was more expensive was the Special College World Edition LS Meta.
Given that this is the most expensive bat in BBCOR history ($550), we can’t give it a very good grade. Not wanting to give this bat a total 0 on pricing, we opted to find a score that is probably lower than any other model we’ll review, but not so low that it destroys the overall rating.
Compared to other BBCOR bats
The CAT9 Composite Pastime is an outstanding bat, but we like to do our due diligence. Below, we’ve listed three other bats that are comparable.
CAT9 Composite Pastime vs. Louisville Slugger Meta
The Meta beats the CAT9 out in 4 out of 5 categories. The Meta is designed as a contact-focused bat, so the CAT9 offers better pop. Even so, the CAT9 is only slightly-end loaded.
The swing weight isn’t significant enough to make up the difference. We’d opt for the LS Meta over the CAT9.
CAT9 Composite Pastime vs. Easton ADV Hype
The ADV Hype is another great option. It’s a two-piece composite model that players say is incredibly comfortable in their hand.
The ADV Hype seems to have a bit more pop in its barrel which helps given that it’s a more balanced swing than the CAT9.
Overall, both models are great options. One again, the price is a key factor in choosing the ADV Hype over the CAT9.
CAT9 Composite Pastime vs. Axe Avenge Pro
We’re typically huge fans of the Axe bats. We love their handle because it naturally improves a players bat speed and swing mechanics. The barrel is a bit softer which means it has less pop.
Given a softer barrel and the price point, we definitely think the Avenge Pro has dropped off a bit this year. Because of that, we’ll take the CAT9 Composite Pastime over the Avenge Pro, even with the price.
For more options, check out our pick of the best BBCOR baseball bats.
Who is the CAT9 Composite Pastime best suited for?
In general, this bat is a great model for players who are developing power. Having a model that is slightly end-loaded will help young players develop a power swing and transition into a truly end-loaded model.
The bat is limited by its price tag meaning that it’s probably out of the price range that most players or families can afford.
- Cushioned grip.
- Tacky knob on the handle.
- Slightly end-loaded makes a great transition for developing power hitters.
- The pop is about average.
- This is the most expensive bat on the market.
- The bat doesn’t perform up to its price tag.
Overall, this is a solid bat. There aren’t any glaring issues. Unfortunately for Marucci, part of the grading system includes price. Having a $550 price tag develops sky-high expectations. The CAT9 Composite Pastime can’t live up to those expectations.
If this bat were priced at $400, this review would look a bit different. The price tag is the driving force that pushes this bat down our list.