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Thread: Baseball/softball batting cage Useful or not?

  1. #1
    Cricket Spectator
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    Jun 2019
    NJ, USA

    Baseball/softball batting cage Useful or not?

    I'm in the US and I am just getting in to Cricket looking to learn the basics. I was thinking of getting comfortable with swinging the bat at a batting cage(I got a cricket bat for a gift) however I cannot find a cricket batting cage/nets in my area. However I have a number of options for batting cages related to baseball and one of them said they get cricketers in there occasionally.

    1. Would a baseball or softball batting cage be of any use for practice? (I'm guessing it would be like facing nothing but full tosses.)
    2. Do I need a full set of pads/cricket helmet?
    3. Any suggestions on shots I should practice?

    There is a local once a month tennis ball cricket game in my area that I would like to attend but I'd feel more comfortable if I had some useful swings of the bat under my belt.

  2. #2
    International Coach Starfighter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    On a wing and a prayer
    1. Playing actual cricket shots will be hard, but it could help at least with your eye. Could screw up your footwork and bat swing though. Never having been in a baseball batting cage (not many in Australia) I have no idea what the adjustability in terms of trajectories and speeds is, but something that gives the lowest trajectory possible would be best so you can play straight, even if it means using a slow speed.

    2. Depends on the speed and whether you are willing to take the risk. I have no idea what you are like as a batsman, you might have a much better eye than me (I'm pretty crap). I wouldn't face anything over 60 mph without pads but you might see the ball much better than I do. If you don't wear them and get hit it will hurt a lot even at low speeds. Start on the lowest speed you can get and work up to what you are comfortable with. Depending on your confidence a helmet might be good, even a baseball helmet would be better than nothing. This only applies if the pitching machine will be chucking hard balls of course.

    3: Straight bat shots are better, especially without a bouncing ball, but if you can't get a low trajectory then you may be limited to playing on the back foot. Cross bat shots may not be as useful in tennis ball cricket where I can imagine the bowling will generally be full, but still maybe worth it. I'd be a bit wary of getting hit though. But a straight bat is the the fundamental of batting technique.

    Should bear in mind that cricket is quite different with a hard ball and a tennis ball, the tennis ball being much lighter and bouncier of course. Garden variety slogs may be more successful, but a taped tennis ball could swing a lot.

    I'd also be wary of taking a new cricket bat (unless it's a cheapie) against a hard ball, they need 'knocking in' to compress the wood in the face of the bat so it doesn't dent or lift.
    Bijed likes this.

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