Before we start, let me just add one thought on how I believe ballplayers are made. FIRST… you must learn proper mechanics! SECOND… you do it over and over and over again! The player that has privilege of being able to hit just by walking out his back door is at an unbelievable advantage when compared to player who can't. He is as fortunate as a player can ever be for this is absolute number one tool that a player can have to become best ballplayer he possibly can become.
I once asked a coach if he ever had a player with a backyard pitching machine setup who didn't turn into a good hitter. He thought for a minute before he said, "No, I don't think I ever have."
If you can hit, a coach will always find a position for you!
So You Want To Buy a Pitching Machine? For most people buying a pitching machine is a one-time purchase, so you sure want to make right decision and not have to live with wrong machine. If you will allow me to help, I may be able to assist you in whittling your selection down to right choice. Keep in mind that if you simply read descriptions below, your gut feeling is most likely going to lead you to right choice. I say this because none of what we sell is junk. So if you are caught between two price levels and both are affordable, know that though I believe that there is quality built into all that we sell, more money does buy more machine. You can't overpay for quality!
The major considerations are…TYPE OF MACHINES, PRICE, SPACE, PLAYER AGE
Type of Machines:
"Real Ball" Throwing Machines: The Real Ball category are those machines which throw real balls or machine pitch dimple balls (you've seen them in yellow or white at commercial batting cages). Incidentally, both types of baseballs weigh 5 oz.
These machines come in two major categories plus a new category that we'll discuss shortly. The categories are: -Wheel Machines -Arm Style Machines -Compressed Air Machines Generally, all require a batting cage (there are a few exceptions), most can be purchased with auto-feeders and remote controls for one player operation.
Wheel Style Pitching Machines - (One & Two Wheel Models) These are most popular types and are seen in backyards, machine-pitch leagues, high schools, colleges and in pro ball. They consist of a rubber wheel(s), a motor to propel wheel(s), electronics with speed and direction adjustment knobs and a steel frame attached to a tripod. All run on 110v current though many fields without power will use a generator. Most can be purchased for baseball only, softball only or in a combination package for multi sport use.
Single Wheel Machines: Just what name implies, these entry-level machines generally throw a straight pitch between approximately 25-70+ MPH. Cost ranges from just over $900. and up.
Then there are a few single wheel curveball machines which have added feature of obvious, it can also throw a curveball. I personally prefer curveball machines for their versatility in throwing breaking ball from either "hand", but budget obviously needs to be added into your choice as well. The price bumps up just beyond $1200. Distinct Advantages are lower price for a real ball machine and weight of only 60 lbs for relatively easy transport from car to ballpark etc. Distinct Disadvantages are that they do not throw high speeds or variety of pitches that two wheel machines do.
Two Wheel Machines: These are admittedly, our biggest sellers. These machines will throw and simulate almost every pitch from any angle, from left or right-handed pitchers at speeds from approximately 25 to well into 90 plus MPH range. They carry price tags of over $1500. plus options that are not necessary but do add to function and enjoyment. Distinct Advantages are their ability to throw all different types of pitches and added bonus of using them for ground balls (not so good with single wheel machines) as well as fly balls and catchers pop-ups. They are somewhat portable. Our machines range in weight from 60 lbs to 110 lbs. Some of our competitors' older technology machines weigh 150 lbs. Distinct Disadvantages are that you won't see motion of "pitchers arm" though you will get used to it after some practice. Additionally, as in all wheel type machines, they aren't consistent with wet, waterlogged balls or swollen balls (For this reason we suggest and also package many of our models with machine pitch dimple balls). Click to see our Single & Two Wheel Pitching Machines
Arm Style Pitching Machines These are workhorses of many programs from High school and up through pros. You've seen them at commercial batting cages those big green hulks of steel with their red lights warning of impending pitch. They've been around for over 50 years and are really quite civilized and simple, once you get to know them. They can be equipped and changed for baseball or softball. They throw a straight, accurate ball at varied speeds of 25 to 85 plus MPH though we even offer an entry-level machine that peaks out at 65 MPH and also works well for slow-pitch softball (though arm throws in an overhand motion). You should consider covering them during off-season but really, you never have to move them, they are built like Russian Tanks.