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A pitcher with speed, control, and a $581 price tag was delivered to Briggs Cage yesterday afternoon for "experimentation." However, according to Carroll F. Getchell, business manager for the Athletic Association, it's "not very likely" that the fireballer will see service this year.
The HAA's new find--a pitching machine--is the creation of Stephen C. Currier, a Newton engineer who has been working with sporting equipment for the past three years. It works on a compressed air principle and is the only automatic machine of its type.
Using hard rubber baseballs, the instrument flashes a small light to warn the batter it is about to "pitch" and then shoots the ball from a metal pipe. Levers in the rear of the machine can adjust the speed and direction of the ball. Currier's invention differs from those used by the Boston Braves and Brooklyn Dodgers, as it does not have a mechanical arm to deliver the ball and does not require reloading after every pitch.
Player reaction to the machine was mixed, but Coach Stuffy McInnis was impressed. "It would be a good thing in the hot weather when you're trying to save your pitchers," he said, "good for batting practice, and teaching the pitchers how to bunt."
"The budget for this year has already been made," Getchell said.
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