Help a Tosser
July 9, 2007 5:58 PM   Subscribe

Whats the best way to throw a baseball in the house?

I need to practice pitching in my tiny studio apartment. The solution I have in mind is like a box full of pillows type thing that I prop against the wall and throw into from 5 feet away. But its gotta very quiet due to neighbors. And its gotta trap the hardballs without bouncing them back at me. And its gotta withstand repeated use. Any creative solutions to my lack of friends and living space would be much appreciated. (I know i could go to a nearby park but lets pretend i cant for some reason)
posted by ElmerFishpaw to Grab Bag (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Best answer: Quilt (maybe two quilts) on a clothesline. Not directly against the wall - at least six inches or a foot away from the wall. Ball goes thwap, weight and movement of quilt absorb the energy, ball drops to the ground (another quilt). You can work out some sort of funnel to roll the balls back to you if you wish.
posted by jellicle at 6:07 PM on July 9, 2007


Suspend a piece of heavy fabric in front of the pillow box so that when you throw the ball, the fabric is pushed aside by the ball. This will keep it from bouncing out and slow it down before it hits the pillows, which will also prevent it from bouncing as much. It will take some fine tuning to get the size of the fabric right so that the ball won't be stopped completely by the fabric.

Does it have to be a baseball, because a tennis ball would be even easier to slow down.
posted by 517 at 6:07 PM on July 9, 2007


You need a big net to throw into.
posted by The World Famous at 6:08 PM on July 9, 2007


I had a BB gun trap that used a piece of heavy canvas on a frame. The bottom of the canvas was folded up about a quarter of the way, and sewn at the sides, forming a pocket. The BBs would hit the canvas and fall into the pocket. The canvas was only attached to the frame at the top, so it was not at all taut.

You could do the same thing for your baseball. Heavy quilt, safety pin the bottom after folding it up a fourth or so. Hang it from a frame, or ceiling hooks. Put a pillow in the pocket to keep it open so the ball will fall in. (No need to sew the pocket in your case.)
posted by The Deej at 6:36 PM on July 9, 2007


I broke a windowpane this way, despite a fairly elaborate "catching" contraption. Just be prepared to explain it to your landlord, or repair it yourself. Wild pitches happen.
posted by nkknkk at 6:56 PM on July 9, 2007


What you need is an indoor batting cage.
posted by ottereroticist at 7:18 PM on July 9, 2007


Mom always said, don't play ball in the house. But if you must, I'd go with the quilts on a clothesline approach - two is better than one.
posted by pdb at 7:48 PM on July 9, 2007


I used to golf in the house. I opened a closet and hung a really heavy old comforter from just inside the closet on big-ass metal hooks so it was the entire closet depth away from the wall. I could drive the bejesus out of the ball and the comforter wouldn't even move. Silent as a mouse, too. I'm betting if you did this, with a combination of some heavy weights or cinderblocks weighing down the bottom of said comforter, it would be the cat's pajamas.
posted by fusinski at 8:10 PM on July 9, 2007


I'm thirding or fourthing those who have suggested hanging a comforter or a rug over a line a foot or so off the wall. I used to play disc golf with a guy who lived in a loft, and he practiced throwing drives in his living room with such a set-up.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 8:33 PM on July 9, 2007


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