As hitters progress toward hitting off a pitching machine and seeing live pitches in junior leagues and tournament baseball, it’s important for them to integrate tee work into their hitting routine to continue building proper mechanics while not having to worry about the thrown pitch.
This is the age hitters must begin to build layers in their hitting routine by taking swings off a tee, with a focus on mechanics, and also by seeing live pitches to get comfortable tracking the ball.
Our recommendation for junior hitters: 360 Tee or Travel Tee with Power-Thru (Power), Small Training Ball (increased visual acuity), and Impact Balls ( more swings, less ball pick up).
The 360 Tee is a great tee to begin to teach junior level hitters on seeing the ball over multiple areas of the plate. The 360 Tee can be maneuvered to put the ball in various positions over the plate, showing hitters where contact should be made with the ball.
For younger hitters who are more advanced in understanding where to make contact with the baseball, the Travel Tee is a great option. The Travel Tee can be put to use quickly for rounds of hitting at home or before games.
The Power-Thru Ball allows junior hitters to learn to drive through the baseball or softball. Its larger size allows to hitters to see the target easily and the increased weight (17oz) provides resistance when hitting the ball, causing the hitter to activate the hips, core, and upper body muscles.
Small Training Balls force the hitter to increase their visual acuity and focus more on the ball while making contact. The various colors can be used as a concentration tool by having the hitter call out the color while the ball is in flight.
For hitters who have limited space or time, Impact Baseballs provide multiple benefits. With their two tone color, the Impact Baseballs force the hitter to focus on the bright yellow portion of the ball and increase their concentration. The “indestructible” material provides more durability for more swings. The weight adds feel at contact. And the limited-flight design makes for easy retrieval.
Walt Nolen Walt, Category Manager for Diamond Sports, boasts a long career in baseball, most recently pitching for the Chicago Cubs organization and racking up over 100 career pitching starts. Thereafter, he founded his own company, Innovetx Sporting Goods, manufacturing custom, premium baseball gloves. He's brought the perfect combination of experience and product innovation to the SKLZ team. View all posts by Walt Nolen