SKLZ Hurricane Category 4 vs SwingAway MVP

by Rick
(Westchester, NY, USA)

Derek Jeter endorsed (SKLZ.com)

Derek Jeter endorsed (SKLZ.com)

Derek Jeter endorsed (SKLZ.com)
Bryce Harper endorsed (SwingAway.com)

The swingaway has a ball attached to bungee cords and allows for an easier time to have more swings then a tee. The Skilz Hurricane Category 4 is a similiar product to the swingaway but has a rotational arm and not a real ball.


Do you view the Skilz Hurricane Category 4 as an improvement over the swingaway?

Thank you

Swing Smarter Response:
Great question Rick! I love the challenge between these two. I decided to analyze the $199 SwingAway MVP model to the $199 SKLZ Hurricane 4 model, so we get an apples to apples price comparison.

Let's start with the SwingAway MVP...

This Bryce Harper endorsed hitting product most of the time is compared against the SoloHitter, which I used to promote as one of the 9 best baseball hitting aids on the planet in The Starting Lineup Store, but this one video changed it for me:



(The Solohitter is on the right, and the SwingAway is on the left)

Here are the features of the SwingAway (copy and pasted from SwingAway.com):

The MVP Model is the New and Improved version of the SwingAway for Home Training and is engineered to be a stronger, more durable and even easier to assemble.

This SwingAway Model is specifically designed for the Home Training of all players regardless of age or ability and for Team Use up to 13u. The MVP allows varsity and youth players to Train Year- Round. Made of High Quality 18 gage Galvanized Steel.

  • Immediately becomes a Hitting Station for Practice and Pre- Games Batting Practice

  • Provides the feel of hitting live pitches without chasing or picking up balls

  • Ensures a Perfect Swing with each repetition, instant feedback visually and by feel

  • Ball can be positioned anywhere in the strike zone, high, low, inside or outside

  • Includes the SA Patented Hitting Training Mat which teaches proper contact points to hit inside, outside, down the middle pitch locations

  • Promotes a Quick and Powerful hands inside and to the ball, eliminating a long casting swing and other swing flaws

  • 3 - second Ball return, up to 10-15 quality swings per minute - 100-150 cuts in Only 10-15 minutes
  • Develops Proper Swing Mechanics, Muscle Memory, Bat Speed, Power and Confidence

  • Train Year-Round, sets up indoors or out- plus folds flat in seconds for maximum portability and storability

  • Converts very easily to a World Class Pitch -Back for defensive and throwing drills



You know me, I am NOT about endorsements, they tend to throw up a red flag about the poor quality and/or ineffectiveness of the product...but please check out Bryce Harper's comment about the SwingAway, it comes across a little different than other "fake" endorsements:

"I have been using the SWINGAWAY since I was 10 years Old and still Train on it today as a PRO."

I know for a fact BH used the SwingAway virtually his whole baseball life...I have a close source.

In following, the SKLZ Hurricane Category 4 is endorsed, I believe, by Derek Jeter, and I guarantee he can't make a statement anywhere close to that. In fact, I don't think he trains on it TODAY!

Not to mention, I have a SwingAway and LOVE it!

Also, I have the older model, and it took me the whole 2010 All-Star baseball game to assemble it...way too long. Now SwingAway improved on the MVP model logistics by making it include less parts and time to put it together.

Now for the SKLZ Hurricane Category 4 (copy and pasted from the SKLZ website):

  • Rugged, non-slip base for indoor/outdoor solo practice

  • 47-inch target training stick with integrated ball provides ideal placement

  • Simulates incoming pitches, or hitting off a tee as a stationery target

  • Height extends from 29” to 43” for virtually any size and aged player, or ball position

  • Multi-twist mechanics provide feedback on bat speed and power

  • Heavy-duty but lightweight – moves easily almost anywhere

  • Easy setup storage

  • Some assembly required – no tools needed

  • Contents include: Hurricane Category 4 Unit, home plate, carry bag, 4 ground pins, 4 power bands



What's the verdict?

It's really a question of preference...I'm super partial to the SwingAway because I want to train on a machine either with a stationary ball, automated soft toss machine action, or live pitching. I don't like that a ball is coming at you attached to a stick in a circular motion...real life pitches don't come to you like that.

My belief is this...the reason we have trouble taking our BP swing to a real-life plate appearance is because we don't train in reality.

Wheel pitching machines, tether-ball like hitting aids, balls on a stick (that's what "she" said!!). These types of tools do NOT train for game-AB's.

Although, I have hitting instructor friends (ahem! Robert Canary), who I respect tremendously, who absolutely loves training his hitters on the Hurricane Category 4.

PLEASE NOTE: both these machines talk about improving mechanics, trust me, they don't. They provide an outlet to get more repetition in.

Hitting technique must be addressed with hitting aids like the Drive Developer, MP30, and/or the ProHammer hitting aids you can find at The Starting Lineup Store as well.

Rick, like I said, it's all about personal preference. So, I do NOT believe the SKLZ Hurricane Category 4 is an upgrade to the SwingAway MVP.

Thanks again for your question!

Comments for SKLZ Hurricane Category 4 vs SwingAway MVP

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Jan 08, 2015
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SWINGAWAY Without a Doubt!
by: CJ

There is No Comparison of the 2 Products. The Hurricane, as properly described, is a rotational hitting machine. The ball on a stick comes at an angle that forces the batter to hit the ball out in front as if it was an inside pitch to a RH Hitter. Thru repetition the batter will have tendencies to only hit that inside pitch, open his hips and shoulders early. Not Good... The SWINGAWAY will allow the batter to position the ball in any pitch location and practice hitting the ball at the proper contact point and appropriate field. The SWINGAWAY identifies then fixes SWING Flaws, the Hurricane creates them.
My advice to anyone that has a rotational hitting device is to throw it away so it wont cause more damage.

Aug 15, 2012
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SWINGAWAY Hands Down
by: Coach Kenny

There are a lot of differences between the SWINGAWAY and the Hurricane. However the Hurricane can create very bad habits that can and will ruin a hitters swing. The hitting stick spins circular to the batter, similar to a curve ball, and the only way to hit the stick so it spins back around is to hit it way out in front of the plate, as to pull the ball. With repetition this will cause hitters to open-up to early and consistently. It does not teach the hitter to hit other pitch locations and an outside pitch will become unhittable.
Dont be fooled, get the SWINGAWAY, also I have never seen the Hurricane in any High Level Team or Facility, I do see the SWINGAWAY quite often

Mar 10, 2012
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Swing Away is the best hitting tool...
by: Anonymous

I have at my academy. I've used the Titan elite model for 4 years and its pretty simple. They should have named it Mr..400 because every kid that learns to use the swingaway properly, works on inside, outside and up the middle swings, the ones that do that bat .400 plus, the ones that can't have major flaws in their swings.

Nov 30, 2011
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Great input Robert!
by: Joey from SwingSmarter.com

I love it! Thanks for the insight into the Hurricane, RC...I like'd how you said, the swing feedback between a D&T swing versus the Nike Swoosh sign is way different. That's great info.

I do agree with you on repetitive hitting aids, like tees, soft toss machines, the SwingAway, etc. if kids don't have the right mechanics, they're doomed right from the start.

There desperately NEEDS to be more emphasis on technique versus repetition...the ol' quality versus quantity cliche.

Awesome stuff as always Robert!

Nov 29, 2011
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Hurricane Hitting Machine
by: Robert Canary

Hi Joey,

Yes I used the Hurricane allot. However, I mostly used it on hitters that have a tendency to go straight to the ball (you know the old Down-and-through). Hitting the Hurricane with this sort of swing results in the "ball-on-the-stick" flopping around and usually produces no rotation. Only when the hitter drops inline with the ball "then" swings through, will it produces good rotation.

After that I don't have much use for it. Its soft toss and Tee work with wood bats. The Swing Away scares me, because I get kids in at my facility that jump in on anything and they start swinging. And if they are already swinging wrong it reenforces the wrong thing.

I only let my advance students use the Swing Away.

The Swing Away is probably the better of the two devices, However, it should be used under close supervision of a hitting coach. Or by an already accomplished hitter.

By the way. The Hurricane. You don't hit it by loading it up and letting it swing at you. Your suppose to hit it the same way you hit off a Tee. But if you don't swing correctly it will not go any where.

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