If you’re here just to find the best pitching machine and really can’t afford to take the time to read the excellent reviews and buying advice prepared by our researchers, this short paragraph will highlight all the vital information. We have been able to gather a lot of information about various products for sale by looking into reviews and ratings in expert review sites and taking the data together with what actual owner feedback says about the different brands and models on the market. Thankfully, that tireless product comparison and evaluation led us to what we consider as the best product in this category, the Louisville Slugger UPM 45 Blue Flame. Making a fantastic addition to any team’s gear collection, this exceptional product easily sets up for a variety of drills, thanks to its ability to throw any type of ball from hard balls to dimple balls, to fast-pitch softballs and even to light flight, plastic balls and soccer and volleyballs. Equipped with speed control, this machine pitches balls at various velocities ranging from 18 to 45 miles per hour, while handling plastic and light flight balls up to 60 mph. Should the highly popular Louisville Slugger UPM 45 Blue Flame run out of stock, you can always go for the second best option engineered to be just as good, the First Pitch Baseline.
|Product||Max Speed||Price||Weight||Ball Type/Size||Our Rating||Where to buy|
|65 mph||$$$$||30 lbs||9″ balls||A+||AMAZON
|50 mph||$$$||35 lbs||11-12″ balls||A||AMAZON
|75 mph||$$||23 lbs||5″ balls||B||AMAZON|
|60 mph||$$||>20 lbs||Baseballs, softballs, poly balls, wiffle balls||B+||AMAZON
|30 mph||$$||5 lbs||5.1″ balls||C||AMAZON
Helping baseball and softball players develop their playing talents and skills, baseball pitching machines deliver consistent and technically sound pitches so batters can develop good playing mechanics such as a consistent and effective swing. You can enjoy more efficient and effective practice sessions with a good quality pitching machine that suits the game you seek to play. Now what distinguishes a good pitching machine from the rest?
Suitable for your playing ability
A good pitching machine for beginners tosses balls gently at regular intervals/ you can expect fixed speeds as low as 10 mph. This type of machine allows children to work on their batting drills. Typically compact and lightweight, a beginner pitching machine is easy to take anywhere.
A Youth League pitching machine delivers reliable, safe pitches. Driven by a single-motor, this type of machine accommodates Reduced Injury Factor (RIF) balls, which are characterized by a softer core typically made of polyurethane and are available in both official and reduced weights. RIF balls, which are softer than average, enable young players to overcome their fear of the ball. Generally performing like regular balls, RIF balls bounce and roll as expected. Youth League pitching machines offer a maximum pitch speed of 60 mph or higher. Transport wheels come in some models to enable portability. Other machines can be transported using a moveable cart.
Delivering variety and fast pitches, a high school, college or professional pitching machine offers speeds of 90 mph and greater. Equipped with dual motors and two wheels, this type of machine also provides plenty of pitching options.Most models pitch sliders, fastballs, curveballs, right and left. Some models come with a 360-degree swivel head that enables you to leave the machine where it is and be assured that it will still toss to various parts of the playing field. When a vertical pivot is used with the machine, fielding pitches can be produced including fly balls, pop-ups and ground balls. Think about weight and portability, which may be issues when you want to move the pitching machine.
Softball pitching machines use drops and risers to simulate fast and slow-pitch underhand throws. Some models also handle baseballs. Large and stationary machines can accommodate more balls compared to highly portable, lightweight ones. Get the model that you feel can hold the number of balls you want. However, ball handling capacity may not be a huge issue of you are practicing with a companion or if you don’t mind having to regularly fill the ball carriage during practice. You might want to look at pitching machines with ball feeder options if you’re planning to practice alone. While large feeders accommodate as many as 80 balls, small ones handle from 16 softballs or 20 baseballs at a time. If you plan to do solo practice, you will want to use a pitching machine with or compatible with an inline switch. This way, you can switch the machine on and off from the batter’s box with the small box just at your feet.
Throwing capability and power
A wheel-driven automatic pitching machine is a portable model equipped with a steel frame that in turn sits on a tripod. This type of machine utilizes a single or a pair of wheels, usually air-filled pneumatic tires or hard rubber, which rotates the ball and drives it toward the batter. An inexpensive one-wheel model pitches straight fastballs between 25 and 75 mph, with some machines throwing curveballs and able to alter direction of the wheel spin to simulate either left-handed or right-handed pitching. One-wheel machines outfitted with a single motor and weighing from 30 to 60 pounds are ideal for casual users. Dual wheel machines offer pitch speeds between 25 to over 90 mph and are able to throw virtually any pitch. They are often equipped with a swivel head that enables easy projection of balls at various angles. Typically weighing from 60 to 150 pounds, dual-wheel models are perfect for those who want to improve their game.
Different pitching machines work with different types of balls from standard-size baseballs to softballs or both. Other models work with specialized softball-size or baseball-size pitching machine balls and even golf wiffle balls, and sting-free or dimpled balls for those who bat with dent-prone aluminum bats. Check out the specs on the machine to make sure you use the correct ball type for the unit.
Good pitching speeds
A motor or dual ones driven by a 110-volt standard electric power operate the spinning wheels. Measured in horsepower, the total motor power defines the maximum pitch speed of a machine. As the horsepower rating increases, so does the number of wheel revolutions per minute and the pitch speed. Adjustment knobs enable pitch speed control. The spin direction of the wheels should be controllable to simulate right- or left-handed pitching.
The pitching speed of the machine is an important factor if it is to be set up at a standard or regulation distance. However, if the pitching machine is intended for use in a 20- or 24-foot home batting cage, the pitching speed won’t really matter that much. A high school player may find a pitching machine delivering 50 mph to be too slow especially when operating from a regulation distance of 60 feet 6 inches. However, the ball is delivered much faster when you stand close to the machine. Thus, in a 24-foot batting cage, you will be able to react more quickly and the throwing speed will seem more like 126 mph to you, which is faster than an actual pitcher of any skill level can throw. To compute the virtual speed, you will need to take the regulation distance and divide that by the short distance you intend the machine to be from the back of the plate, then multiply that value by the speed.
Top rated pitching machines in 2019
There are plenty of pitching machines to choose from and the large number of options can overwhelm the buyer quite a bit. We have devised the buying guide above to help you make an easier shopping decision. We have also showcased the best products below to help you even more.
One of the best pitching machines in 2019, regarding quality and efficiency is considered to be the Louisville Slugger UPM 45 Blue Flame model. This device has the capacity to pitch baseball, fast-pitch softball, poly balls and also whiffle balls which makes it a great addition to any sportive carrier. Louisville Slugger UPM 45 is compact and portable, weighing in only 20 pounds which extremely hand in transporting the device from one place to another. Furthermore there’s no need to plug in the device to an electric power source because Slugger UPM 45 works on spring tension.
Buy from Amazon for ($148.75)
Giving you a great choice, the First Pitch Baseline delivers balls at speeds up to 70 mph to enable baseball players to practice good batting form and skills to make them ready for the big leagues. This pitching machine is ideal for use in a backyard batting cage or on the playing field for young baseball and softball team players. It has reversible legs and a swivel base to accommodate both left- and right-handed pitching styles. This USA-made product boasts superior quality, craftsmanship and materials in a small and easily portable package. Practice softball and baseball batting and even handling pop-ups to 70 mph easily. The ¼-horsepower motor ensures more than enough power to handle youth practice. Lightweight at just 50 pounds, this machine offers tool-free set up.
Buy from Amazon for ($849)
Franklin Sports MLB
Allowing you to warm up and improve your batting average, the Franklin Sports MLB throws a ball every seven to ten seconds so you can easily correct your batting form and style in preparation for the next home run. This machine offers an adjustable pitching angle to accommodate batters of various heights to increase their chance of hitting the ball. A flashing red light tells you when a pitch is about to be released so you don’t have to do the guesswork. The included Aero-Strike plastic baseballs enable you to practice with the machine right out of the box. The unit requires 4 separately bought D-size batteries to run.
Click to see the price on Amazon!
Considered by thousands of satisfied users as one of the best pitching machines in 2019, Jugs Lite-Flite model is efficient, useful and reliable to people that want to learn baseball and to improve their game. This lightweight machine is ideal for honing swings of up and coming hitters and has the capacity to throw lite baseballs and softballs. Furthermore this pitching machine has full range of movement adjustable for delivering fastballs, curve balls and also sliders. The model has a solid build with 1/8 horsepower, 1.3 amplifier motor and has a weight of 35 pounds which makes it easier to transport it in various places.
Buy from Amazon for ($399.99)
Going through the current top rated pitching machines reviews it is easy to see why Jugs Small-Ball pitching machine is present in the top three. This small pitching machine is ideal for improving depth perception and also honing hitting skills that the user needs to improve fast and efficiently. The model uses 5-inc, 5-ounce polyurethane foam ball which half the size of the regular baseball in order to strengthen the perception of the athlete. Jugs pitching machine can throw accurate fastballs and overhand curves at a simulated speed of 75 mph which is white impressive.
Buy from Amazon for ($219)
Most of the current top rated pitching machines reviews underline the efficiency and great functionality of Zooka model, known for its compact design and solid structure. This battery operated baseball pitching machine is ideal for sending on average around 500 pitches at speeds by up to 65 mph. Zooka pitching machine can be used for infield and also outfield drills by using any type of 9in ball for greater accuracy. Zooka is lightweight and portable and thus it can be placed anywhere there is need.
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At any local baseball team you will find a professional pitching machine that trains the athletes to catch or hit the ball with greater precision. Furthermore you will notice at a single glance the presence of SKLZ Lightning Bolt pitching machine Pro that automatically pitches soft practice balls by 25 to 35 miles per hour with realistic flight in order to enhance the ability of the athlete to respond better and with more accuracy. In addition the model includes 12 soft micro Bolt Balls with a 5.125 inch circumference and 0.2 ounce weight for a profound challenge, placing this model among the best pitching machines in 2019.
Buy from Amazon for ($48.6)
Franklin Sports MLB Super Star – Not available
Engineered to practice young players ages 5 to 15 prepare for the major leagues, the Franklin Sports MLB Super Star offers a range of options to practice fielding and hitting. This pitching machine comes with four different settings and they include pop flies for fielding practice, soft and fast pitch for hitting practice, and grounders. You can set the unit to your desired angle and height to deliver the perfect pitch that you want to practice with. Players can handle quick and soft-toss pitches by building consistent batting skills. For fielding practice, the machine can help develop sharp hand-eye coordination for faster reflexes and more reliable catching whether for fly-call or grounder practice.