A pitching machine prevents arm injuries and fatigue which you would have experienced pitching the ball by hand. It also offers the ball to the batter with increased accuracy and precision. Consequently, they are seen as reliable trainers in preparation for major leagues. Most of them are compatible with as young as 3-year-old players.
Notably, most of these machines are expensive with some costing over 2 grands. As a result, you need to be right with your first order, not unless you don’t care much about shipping costs. Unfortunately, that is easier said than done. How will you be able to tell quality trainers from the numerous models there are in the market? Don’t worry. Here, we have a list of 10 of the highly reviewed machines. We believe that this list will make it easy for you to compare and identify what’s good for you or your young player.
However, in 1 or 2 minutes, allow me to walk you through a list of points you should consider when buying these machines.
Portability and setup- these 2 factors matter a lot depending on where you’ll be utilizing your machine. For instance, you need a machine that’ll fit in your car hassle-freely if you’ll be moving it from your home to the field and back. Again, you/the trainee should be able to set it up flawlessly.
Mechanical or power-operated machines- You’ll have to choose between these 2 categories. Mechanical units are known to be durable and easy to deal with. On the other hand, power-operated machines are more versatile. However, some are expensive and break down easily.
Types of compatible balls- most of these machines also differ in the kinds of balls they use. In most instances, they are designed to utilize practice hard balls, soft balls, or baseballs.
10. Junior Hack Attack Pitching Machine (Softball)
- By: Sports Attack
Junior Hack by Sports Attack opens our list of the machines that we believe will help you perfect your hits. This is a professional-grade device coming at a great price and backed by a full year warranty. The manufacturer recommends this machine for drills, youth league, and backyard games. One thing that stole our heart is its consistent throws. Junior Hack’s head can throw ground balls, pop-ups, and line drives. It’s also able to throw fly balls up to 175 ft. Notably, this pitching machine is fitted with a 3-speed knob that makes it compatible with any changes in pitch.
- It’s easily portable
- It’s an advanced model with speedy and consistent spools
- At over 2,000 bucks, this is an expensive machine though worth it.
9. BSN Bulldog Pitching Machine (Baseball/Softball)
- By: SSG
In case you found Junior Hack unaffordable, this is another machine that could also help you gain some confidence in batting. This is a heavy-duty machine coming at an affordable price. The best part about this is that it throws both baseballs and softballs. In addition, it throws the balls at speeds of 30-60mph. This is doubtlessly enough speed for little leagues and drills. Its heavy-duty convertible legs are also worth noting. They will allow you switch from baseball to softball in a breeze.
- It’s heavy-duty and has quality throws
- It allows baseball and softball practices
- The wheel leaves a black spot on every ball
8. Junior Hack Baseball Pitching Machine by Sports Attack
- By: Sports Attack
This is another great pitching machine coming from our all time winner, Sports Attack. Notably, this baseball accessory is more similar in design to the machine we reviewed first. However, please note that this is a baseball machine while the first was a softball unit. By the same token, the latter throws balls at over 60 mph. Most importantly, Junior Hack Baseball Pitching Machine sets up in a few minutes. It’s lightweight and easy to move from one point to the other and to/from the vehicle. Even better, it offers very silent operations.
- It’s lightweight and simple to set up
- It’s incredibly silent
- It’s well built and durable
- Just like its brother, this machine is also pricier
7. Louisville Slugger Black Flame Pitching Machine
- By: Louisville Slugger
Next on line is this sturdily constructed Louisville pitching machine from Taiwan. This costs far less than the previous models we’ve covered before. Perhaps, this unique piece of machine is slightly cheaper because it doesn’t use electricity. Consequently, Louisville Slugger offers more convenience and functionality. Strange enough, this machine is still able to throw the balls at over 60 mph. To your youth’s advantage, the package comes with the necessary components to convert it from throwing strikes to throwing fly balls. Even better, this machine is compatible with an array of balls including soft, plastic, restricted flight, dimple, and hard balls.
- It has straightforward functionalities
- It’s easy to use
- It can be used anywhere, indoors or outdoors
- Concern about inconsistency
6. Jugs Small-Ball Pitching Machine
- By: Jugs
If you’re not new to baseball, then, you must have heard about Jugs Pitching Machines. This particular machine is one of the most renowned in Jugs’ line. It’s a very recommendable piece since it uses small balls. It will help you in improving your precision and hitting skills. As a consequence, you’ll find it incredibly easier dealing with the full-sized balls. About durability, this machine is made of heavy-duty steel. The legs also feature well thought out heights to deliver accurate and consistent heights. Without forgetting, Jugs runs on rechargeable batteries or 110-volts AC.
- It’s perfect for players as young as 5 years.
- It offers accurate throws
- It has a 75-mph speed range
- It relies on power to operate
5. Diggin Lazer Pitch Baseball
Diggin Lazer is one of the most advanced pitchers we have on the market today. The best thing about this machine is that you can train alone. Importantly, do know that this machine can be overly noisy. If that doesn’t bother you, let’s see what we’ve got here.
The package consists of the pitching machine, a bat, and 5 balls. Uniquely, the bat also acts as a remote control with up to 26’’ of signal range. With this, you can customize how you want the balls pitched. It uses a red light to alert you of the pitch.
- It’s stylish and unique
- It’s lightweight at 3.6 pounds
- It’s full of fun
- There’re concerns about it breaking down easily
4. Franklin Sports MLB Pro Pitching Machine
- By: Franklin Sports
This is another fun-full pitching machine by Franklin Sports. It’s more similar to Diggin Lazer only that it lacks a remote control bat. This machine pitches the balls at an interval of 5 seconds. It’s fun. However, from the reports coming in from other users, I wouldn’t recommend this machine if you’re serious into practicing. Firstly, it doesn’t always give consistent pitches. Again, the balls are easily swayed away by the wind. However, kids may find it fun. Furthermore, it’s inexpensive.
- It’s full of fun
- It’s lightweight
- Its speed and range are inconsistent
3. JUGS Lite-Flite Baseball and Softball Machine
- By: JUGS
We’re not in any way surprised that Jugs places twice on this list. Their Lite-Flite is, in fact, one of the pitching machines that we can’t be able to recommend enough. It’s ideal for players aged 5 years and above. It operates on rechargeable batteries or 110-Volts AC. It throws balls at adjustable 30-50 mph speed range. Uniquely, its head swivels 3600. This means that it can rotate to throw balls in any direction. Above all, Jugs Lite-Flite has a compact design. This makes it easy to fit it any vehicle and to store at home. Its only downside is that the rechargeable battery is sold separately.
- It’s durable
- Its head swivels easily
- It requires power to operate
2. Franklin Sports MLB Pitching Machine
- By: Franklin Sports
Franklin is another ultimate training guide. This is more recommendable than the previous model from this brand. Here, the ball is pitched in 10s time. Its juicier part is that the height can be easily adjusted for higher pitches depending on the player.
- It has quick setups
- It’s inexpensive
- It drains batteries fast
1. Louisville Slugger UPM-45 Blue Flame Machine
- By: Louisville Slugger
This list wouldn’t have been without the inclusion of the Blue Flame Machine. This is amongst the most respected training aides in the field. Notably, it doesn’t require any batteries or power to function. It’s compatible with different balls including hard balls, plastic and flight balls. The throwing speed can be customized at between 18-45mph.
- It requires no batteries or power
- It’s worth every penny
- Some users feel that the speeds should be higher