Choosing the right pitching machine comes down to a few different factors. The first question you have to ask yourself when choosing a new machine is whether it is going to be used in the backyard or for commercial use. Someone who is buying one for their backyard is going to choose a much different type of machine then a coach who is buying a pitching machine for a high school or college.
When it comes to picking a pitching machine the buyer should consider the functionality of the machine they want to buy. This covers the speed that it can throw, the different pitches the machine can throw, the different kinds of balls it can use, and as its ability to use a ball feeder.
There are some that have a set speed that the machine can throw. Most people prefer to buy a pitching machine where the speed is adjustable. Having adjustable speeds on the pitching machine will allow the hitter to practice fastballs of a variety of speeds as well as change-ups. If you are getting one for a child it is recommended that you purchase a children’s pitching machine model with slower speeds. Speed is definitely something the buyer should look at when making their decision.
The next step is to take a look at the types of pitches that it can throw. They are all able to throw fastballs, with most having the ability to throw change-ups as well. If they are more advanced they will be able to throw curveballs and other types of pitches. Any machine that has two wheels is able to throw all different types of breaking balls. This is beneficial to any player that wants to practice their hitting without requiring a pitcher to practice with them.
When choosing the right one you also want to check to see what types of balls the it can use. The first step in this process is checking to see if the machine can throw baseballs, softballs, or if it is a combo that throws both. After that, you will want to check to see if it throws real baseballs/softballs or if it is only able to throw dimpled balls or a completely different type of ball. You will also want to see if it comes with a ball feeder. Ball Feeders have the ability to carry dozens of balls and can give a player a good amount of time to practice with only one fill.
The key is to choose one that will work well with your setting. If you are a high school, college, or little league you are going to want a commercial grade machine. If you are buying one for the backyard you can purchase one that is a little cheaper. It all depends on what you are buying it for as well as your budget.