Louisville Slugger Training Aids is proud to announce that the West Zone of Pony baseball / Softball has adopted and made the Louisville Slugger UPM 45 Pitching Machine mandatory for use in all Shetland League Tournaments starting with the 2011 season. The organization is encouraging all Shetland leagues to use the machine in their regulars season games and practices. They are also encouraging the use of the machine in their older divisions as a low cost way to help speed up practices. Don Gobel, of Pony Baseball, is convinced that the addition of this economical pitching machine will have long lasting benefits with their leagues. Some of the benefits the directors saw with using the  UPM 45 pitching machine were:

• Every player gets the same perfect  pitch to hit, because the machine uses a mechanical throwing arm action. This  eliminates one team having an advantage over the other team because one coach  pitches better than the other coach pitches.

• Every pitch is thrown on a level  plane. The players do not develop incorrect swing paths to the ball. By  learning the correct path to the ball at an early age the player doesn’t have  to unlearn a bad swing habit at an older age.

• The fear factor is taken out of the  game. The young players are no longer afraid of being hit by an inaccurate  pitch thrown by an adult coach.The player can now concentrate on having fun  and learning the game.

• The games will be more exciting  because the players have good pitches to hit every time and the games are  completed faster because three strikes can be thrown instead of five  questionable pitches.