As we continue to grade the BBCOR market, today we’re going to look at the DeMarini Zoa.
The DeMarini Zoa is a two-piece, all-composite bat. It features an eye-catching barrel, a stiff connection, and a comfortable swing weight.
We wanted to offer a quick side note. You’ll find that there are two models listed as the Zoa. DeMarini has the Zoa and the Zoa D-Lab.
We had trouble finding any differences. So, we decided to reach out to DeMarini to make sure we weren’t missing anything. They told us that the D-Lab doesn’t have “any differences but the paint job”.
So, anything written about the Zoa applies to both models.
Our verdict on the 2022 DeMarini Zoa BBCOR 3.84
This bat is one of the more disappointing models on the market this year. It’s a stretch to say that it’s average when compared to The Goods, the LS Meta, or even the CAT9. Yet somehow, it’s priced like it’s the best bat on the market.
In our opinion, DeMarini came up short in a major way on the Zoa and the Zoa D-Lab. It’s just not a bat we can recommend. It doesn’t offer any boost for power hitters and it’s certainly not the best “balanced” bat for all-purpose or even contact hitters.
The DeMarini Zoa is an interesting bat. It’s designed with a continuous fiber composite barrel. The handle is very similar to what you’ll find in a bat like The Goods.
The Anomaly connection is a very stiff connection point which should increase the energy transfer and provide positive feedback.
Players are happy with the swing weight. It’s designed as a balance swing weight, but it is a bit more end-loaded than something like the CF. Honestly, players haven’t had too much to say about the comfort.
This bat does minimize the negative feedback, but the handle doesn’t have any special grip tape or offer any padding.
So, overall, it seems like the bat is comfortable in a hitter’s hands, but isn’t anything to write home about. When asked for feedback, we have repeatedly heard something like “it’s fine”.
We’ve seen this bat handle hundreds of swings without any issue. It consistently performs without any issue. Because we’ve really only seen it in practice and not in full season-long competition, we’re not willing to give it the full 5 out of 5.
This bat seems to need the typical 200 swings to break in. After that, we’ve seen very consistent performance across the board.
This bat really seems to be lacking pop compared to some of the competition. When seeing it on the field compared to other DeMarini models, it just doesn’t compare.
Multiple players were easily able to clear the fence with The Goods but would consistently one-hop the fence or hit the bottom of the fence with the Zoa.
Watching players take batting practice with this model makes us consider this to be more of an all-around or contact hitter’s bat. If you’re a player who has good power and is looking for the bat to take you to the next level, you should look somewhere else.
In our opinion, the pricing for this bat is flat out unacceptable. The bat isn’t terrible, but it’s priced higher than its competition consistently.
DeMarini has The Goods at $400 and The Goods One at $350. We can’t figure out why they would think this model is worth $500.
Everything about this bat seems average at best compared to our favorite BBCOR models. Having such a high price tag makes this bat almost unbuyable.
Compared to other BBCOR bats
Here are a few alternatives to consider in comparison to the 2022 DeMarini Zoa.
DeMarini Zoa vs. DeMarini The Goods
The Goods is the most logical comparison for the Zoa. They’re both 2-piece models made by the same company. The Goods is a hybrid model that has a larger sweet spot, better pop, and players seem more comfortable with The Goods in their hands.
As highlighted before, the Zoa’s price tag is just unacceptable. The Goods outranks the Zoa in every category but is still somehow $100 cheaper. Like Ken Griffey Jr. having a homerun derby with a little leaguer, this isn’t a competition. DeMarini’s The Goods is an easy winner.
DeMarini Zoa vs. DeMarini CF
The next logical comparison is the DeMarini CF. Like the Zoa, the CF is a two-piece, all-composite bat. We believe the CF has more pop and offers a bit more bat control. Overall, players seem to like it more.
With a better performance and a lower price tag, we have to opt for the CF.
DeMarini Zoa vs. Louisville Slugger Meta
Our first non-DeMarini comparison is the Louisville Slugger Meta. It’s a three-piece, all-composite model that earned a 4.44 out of 5 rating in a previous article.
Similarly to the DeMarini Zoa, Louisville Slugger’s Meta doesn’t offer much pop. Pop is really the only area that these are comparable.
The Meta is much more comfortable, offers a true balanced-swing weight, and comes in at a more reasonable price.
The Meta outperforms the Zoa consistently.
For more great options, check out our recommendations for the best BBCOR baseball bats.
Who is the 2022 DeMarini Zoa best suited for?
It’s difficult for us to recommend this bat to anyone at this point. It’s not that the Zoa is a bad model, it just doesn’t compete with the bats in its price range.
Largely, buying this bat would seem like someone trying to show off that they have a new model that no one else has.
- Comfortable in a batter’s hands.
- No real complaints from players.
- Something any hitter can use.
- This bat is largely average at best.
- There isn’t much that stands out.
We struggle to recommend this bat at all. $500 is pretty cost-prohibitive for the average player. This bat just doesn’t perform up to that price tag.
If you’re going to spend up, consider another DeMarini model before this. It’s just not worth the cost.
As a quick reminder, choosing between the Zoa and the Zoa D-Lab is purely a choice of what paint you want on the barrel.