A soft toss machine is a great training tool for baseball and fastpitch softball players.
In this brief article, we identify the best soft toss machines on the market with detail provided on our top picks.
Keep scrolling read more…
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An Overview and Review of Soft Toss Machines
Soft toss is one of the most fundamental drills in all of baseball and softball.
Youth players all the way up to big league ballplayers practice soft toss because it's such a useful way to improve contact with the ball and sharpen hand-eye coordination.
However, we've all had soft toss partners that aren't - well - the best at consistently putting the ball where it needs to be.
(I've admittedly been on both sides of that!)
This is where soft toss machines can help. They automatically give you tons of optimally placed balls to hit without the need for another person's help.
If this sounds like a helpful tool to help you improve as a baseball or softball player, then you're in the right place.
In this post, we review the top soft toss machines on the market across a range of relevant categories.
Keep scrolling to see our top recommendations…
Best Soft Toss Machines - Our Top Picks By Category
Please note: To be extra clear, it bears repeating that soft toss machines are not the same as pitching machines. Soft toss machines slowly toss (or drop) a ball over the strike zone while pitching machines throw the ball to the batter. To learn more about pitching machines, click HERE.
Top Overall Pick: Louisville Slugger Soft Toss Training System
Louisville Slugger's Soft Toss Training System is our top recommendation for baseball and softball players looking to get a soft toss machine.
We really like it for a number of reasons. First, is its design.
It has a simple design that uses gravity and curved plastic to drop the ball exactly where it needs to go.
Up to 7 baseballs can be loaded at one end, then a timer releases a single ball every 6, 8 or 10 seconds depending on what you choose. (Heads up, it requires AA batteries to work).
We also like that it's super lightweight at just 12 pounds and it can be set up and broken down quickly for taking it to and from the field.
The Louisville Slugger Soft Toss System can be adjusted higher or lower based on the person hitting. Also, the machine can be converted into a tee, as the top half of a tee comes in the package.
Please note that other balls like wiffle balls, tennis balls and regulation softballs will work on this machine. However, it can be a bit wobbly the heavier the ball.
Simple yet effective design
Works with a variety of ball types
Flexible timing of ball drop
Able to be converted into a tee
Not as sturdy as we'd like to softballs
Video Overview of the Louisville Slugger Machine
Runner Up Pick: Jugs Toss Machine
Another great soft toss machine option is the Jugs Toss Machine.
This machine has a small footprint and weighs just 13 pounds. It looks like a big blue, covered bucket with a ramp around its sides.
That ramp can hold about 14 real baseballs or 10 softballs (either 11" or 12"). The small machine sits on the ground and every five seconds a ball gets tossed up in the air to hit.
It runs on rechargeable battery power, with a fully charged battery giving you about 8 hours of use before it runs out of juice.
Once the power runs out, just take it home and plug it in. No need to worry about finding new AA’s to swap out!
Each Jugs soft toss machine comes with a home plate, a book of soft toss drills, and the amazon package also gives you 12 dimpled pitching machine baseballs.
Made by Jugs, one of the best brands in the pitching machine biz
Throws real baseballs, real softballs, or Jugs-branded pitching machine balls
Lightweight and easy to move around - no setup or teardown
Comes with a rechargeable battery and a charger
Also useful for infield (double play) drills
On the pricier side
Video of the Jugs Toss Machine
Top Budget Pick: SKLZ Catapult Soft Toss Pitching Machine
If you want a good soft toss machine and budget is your top concern, then we'd recommend the SKLZ Catapult.
It's an affordable machine with lots of solid qualities.
For one, it can work by using either 4 D batteries or it can run by AC power, and SKLZ provides an AC adapter with the package.
It works with real baseballs or tennis balls, and can hold up to 8 balls at one time.
A ball is tossed up every 8 seconds, so you can get through an entire round in a little over a minute.
The Catapult is able to be adjusted for both the vertical height of the ball and for the distance it's tossed. You can do so by turning the knobs on the back and sides of the machines per the instructions given.
Be careful though, as users of the device have reported breaking the knob by turning them too far.
One other thing to note is that in addition to normal baseballs, the Catapult can also toss lightweight plastic balls.
If the height is adjusted properly, then the machine can put some distance on the lightweight balls. Meaning, players or coaches can also use it to get some reps in catching fly balls.
Works with regular baseballs as well as tennis balls and plastic balls
Runs using either AC or battery power
Able to be adjusted for the ball's vertical and horizontal flight
Does not work with softballs
Video of the SKLZ Catapult Machine
That’s A Wrap!
We hope this review of the best soft toss machines was helpful for you.
If we can answer any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us by going to our contact page.
Thanks for stopping by Catchers Home.