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Ball pitching machines are devices used by baseball and softball players
to improve their batting skills. A pitching machine pitches more
consistently than a human baseball pitcher, allowing batters to practice
hitting various kinds of pitches, including fastballs at set speeds.
Parents, coaches, and pitchers will appreciate a pitching machine
for its accuracy and for easing the demand on their throwing arms.
While many pitching machines support the ability to throw softballs,
special softball pitching machines simulate underhanded softball pitches.
Several different kinds of pitching machines are available on the market today. Tossing machines are designed for kids or little leaguers practicing in the backyard. These small, lightweight machines throw pitches at consistent intervals and slow speeds. These entry level machines typically cost a few hundred dollars and feature limited control settings, although some toss machines offer optional remote control units.
As children grow older and their skills improve, a single motor, single wheel machine will become more appropriate. These machines throw up to 50 or 60 mph, should support RIF (Reduced Injury Factor) balls for safety, and may or may not be portable. These mid-level machines pitch quite accurately, and typically cost around five hundred dollars.
High-school, college, and professional baseball players will need a pitching machine that delivers more speed and challenging pitches. Dual wheel, dual motor machines are designed to throw fastballs up to 90 or 100 mph, curves, left or right-handed pitches, and other kinds of pitches. These versatile professional-level and semi-pro machines often cost one thousand dollars or more, but they typically feature a broad range of pitch settings plus cordless remote control units.
Other considerations when buying a pitching machine include the power source and whether a ball feeder or inline switch are needed. Pitching machines may be powered via a plug or a generator. If the pitching machine is to be used by a single person without an assistant, consider a feeder to feed balls into the machine and an inline switch located in the batter's box.
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