Baseball and Softball Pitching Machines
Baseball and softball pitching machines can throw the ball at various speeds, allowing your baseball player to hit off of a pitch of virtually all styles. When it's time to start training for the next season, take a look at the machines available to take your baseball or softball player to the next level.
How fast can a baseball or softball pitching machine pitch?
Depending on the level of play you or your child will be facing, you can find pitching machines as low as 10 miles per hour or as high as 105 miles per hour. The average Little League pitcher can throw approximately 70 miles per hour. When training with the pitching machine, your youth player will want to practice with a pitch at plus or minus 15 miles per hour from the average for their age level and league.
Can a pitching machine pitch a curveball?
Depending on the skill level of you or your sports team, you'll need a machine that will prepare you to face a variety of pitchers. Most pitching machines can handle fastballs, curveballs, offspeed, and sliders at various speeds from both the left and the right sides. This type of machine allows all the members of your sports team to prepare for the more advanced ballplayers that may be on the opposing team.
How do you efficiently use a baseball pitching machine?
While pitching machines allow a player to hit the ball consistently, they don't prepare players for the irregular pitches of an actual athlete. Consider:
- Changing pitch styles: Swinging at 50 fast pitches in a row in the pitching machine isn't how the game is played on the field. It isn't going to help much when there's one fastball followed by an off-speed and a slider in the real game. Change the style of the balls frequently.
- Slowing down: Vary the speed of the balls as well as the pacing between balls in the machine. This prepares you for the changing paces of the game.
- Switching sides: Bat from both the left and right side of the machines in order to work on mental flexibility. If you're ambidextrous, this allows you to switch-hit the ball.
- Move around: By moving around the box in your pitching machine, you'll be able to find your ideal hitting position.
Do pitching machines use real baseballs and softballs?
Depending on the machine you choose, you may have the option of practicing with official league baseballs and softballs. Your machine may also have the option of using practice balls. By practicing with the official baseballs, you are able to get the feel of a real ball hitting the bat.