Iron Mike MP-6 vs Iron Mike MP-4
Both of these Hopper-Fed Iron Mike models look the same and indeed are very similar. The main differences are outlined below
Once you come to the conclusion that you want an arm style pitching machine that holds and throws so many balls that you will drop before you have to stop…
It’s now about deciding which model.
Added Protective Steel Facing (protects from direct ball hits)
Slightly Different Shipping Cost
The Shaker* - optional or included
*The Shaker is our term for a simple devise that overcomes the inherent problem when ball seams catch and interrupt the flow of balls as they are fed into the machine
The added protective steel included with the MP-4 is a great idea however I like the idea of purchasing the virtually identical MP-6 and adding a protective screen that you simply cut a porthole into the net…this protects the front of the entire machine…the total cost becomes very similar!
Probably $30-70 more for the MP-4 depending on your ZIP Code due to the extra weight from the reinforced steel.
When you use game baseballs or softballs, the seams can “catch” as balls are fed into the machine. The shaker stops this issue.
This option comes with the Pro Model MP-4 and is about a $75 option that can be added to the MP-6 either at the factory or you can purchase & install later.
If you only use dimple balls, this is a non-issue.
If you want an arm style pitching machine, you buy an Iron Mike.
There are 3 full size models and 1 youth/jr. model. This MP-5 rack fed model has all the bells n whistles as the more expensive hopper fed models MP-6 and the MP-4 Pro Model
Here’s The Difference
The MP-5 on this page offers a rack mounted ball feeder that holds & throws 38 baseballs or 28 adult size 12” softballs every 6 seconds. (The factory will set up your unit for either sport).
The 2 hopper fed models are loaded by dumping entire buckets of up to 600 baseballs or 400 softballs into the large hopper.
Should I Buy The MP-5 Rack Fed Model? Do I mind reloading every 4 minutes?
If you are purchasing for a single player in the backyard or for infrequent use with a small number of hitters, you might consider the rack fed MP-5 knowing that you will be stopping to reload about every 4 minutes. This is done by simply hitting the last pitch, dropping your bat and clicking the on-off corded remote switch which should be placed near the batter. This stops the arm from continuing its throwing motion every 6 seconds. Gather and/or reload the balls into the rack, walk back to the batters box, click the on-off switch and you will have 36 more swings… That’s your prime consideration!
So, In Summary
All Iron Mike Pitching Machines are simple, efficient, outdoor tough and consistent. They are awesome machines that you will buy only once and have for many seasons and are so efficient that I don’t even recommend you buy any spare parts unless you are shipping outside the USA (by the time you need them, you may forget where you put them!)