Three Backyard Baseball Sets for Little Sluggers

Baseball is one of the most popular team sports in the world, and a great way to get a young athlete outside and on the field.

youth-model pitching machine
A youth-model pitching machine can put balls into the air and help anyone learn how to keep their eye on the ball.iPlay, iLearn

Maybe the reason baseball players are called the boys of summer is because, when it comes to pitching and hitting, we’re all kids at heart—and it all starts in the backyard, where the easiest way to get any kid comfortable in the batter’s box is with a T-ball set. Even if they aren’t quite ready for organized play, you can still give a youngster practice with one of these basic T-ball games. Here are a few big-league options to consider.

Classic T-Ball

t-ball
One of the easiest (and fun) ways to get kids interested in America’s Pastime, is with a T-ball set.Little Tikes

Baseball doesn’t get any simpler than a T-ball post and whiffle bat. The oversized club makes it easy for even the youngest toddler to find success with a satisfying whack. Just make sure the T-ball post has built-in shock absorption and is adjustable for batters of various heights and ages.

Pop and Pitch

Baseball Pitching Machine
After a child graduates from their T-ball set, the next step will be a bat and ball system that simulates pitching.Franklin Sports

Once the Bambino has his swing down, it’s time to challenge hand-eye coordination. But that doesn’t have to mean Dad’s fastball straight down the middle. Pop-up pitchers will put a ball in play at the same height as the tee and make it less intimidating for kids to graduate from swinging at the tee to hammering a live ball.

Big-league Pitching

Baseball & Tennis Pitching Machine
A pitching machine is a great way for someone to learn how to keep their eye on the ball.iPlay, iLearn

Teaching a kid to pitch, hit, and catch is a uniquely American rite of passage for both children and parents. When Dad or Mom can’t always be there, an automated pitching machine is a great stand-in partner. Kid’s can use it to practice their stance and cut, or even as a proxy for games of catch with their first glove.