The Jugs pitching machine line is probably the most well-known of all the pitching machines available today. The Jugs company makes a variety of pitching machine models that vary in price depending on which kind of budget you have to work with.
Starting off with the high-end model, you have the very versatile Curveball Combo Pitching Machine. It is called the Combo because it will throw baseballs, softballs, and tennis balls rather than just one of them. This machine can throw a wide range of pitches including fastballs, sinkers, risers, sliders, along with sidearm curves and fastballs. Basically anything you can think of, this machine can throw it. And it can bring it anywhere from 20-104 mph. That’s some heat! It will also throw fly balls and grounders for fielding practice.
Breaking balls are possible by having two wheels, in which one of them spins at a different speed than the other. This makes the ball spin at a speed great enough that will cause it to break in the direction of rotation. Combine this with being able to angle the wheels whichever way you want allows you to simulate any pitch you can imagine. The Combination machine is the most expensive of all the Jugs models and is priced at $2,195, as of October of 07.’
The next step down in price is the Curveball machine (pictured to the right). This machine is almost identical to the Combination, except it doesn’t throw softballs or tennis balls. It has two wheels, and angles to throw curveballs and sliders, etc. It is priced around $1,800.
Next in line stands the "101" pitching machine. This machine does have two wheels, but unlike the Curveball or Combination machine, the wheels do not angle. So while you still may throw breaking balls, whatever pitch is thrown will move straight up and down the strike zone, rather than side to side. It also won’t throw quite the heat the Curveball or Combination will. It tops out at 90 mph, and is priced around $1,745.
|Jugs Curveball Pitching Machine
The lower-end and youth models are the "MVP," and the "Jr." models. Rather than two wheels, they just have one, so breaking balls are not possible. They will only throw up to about 60 mph, and are priced around $1,000.
The last model on the list is the "Lite Flite" machine. This does not throw the ordinary batting cage balls, but rather Jugs’ Lite Flite balls or poly (wiffle) balls. This machine looks pretty neat and would be a great for those on a smaller budget, who wants to take some batting practice in their own backyard. The cool thing is that it will still throw breaking balls. It is priced pretty modestly around $320.
All in all, the Jugs pitching machine line ranks in quality about as high as can be. Their machines are crafted very well, and are used by many high schools and colleges across the country.