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Press Releases

“Tee Ball Practice Made Perfect!”

“Tee Ball Practice Made Perfect!” Metro’s new Hit Zone™ Air-Suspension Tee™ just might be the hottest hitting aid since the batting cage!

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Developed by former Minnesota Twins AAA slugger, Jamie Ogden and two Minneapolis area entrepreneurs, Todd Kendall and Mark Schaffhausen, the new Hit Zone™ Air-Suspension Practice Tee™ has been making headline news all over the upper Mid-West. By suspending the ball on an invisible column of air, this ingenious invention has made backyard batting practice a lot easier, more fun and most importantly, a whole lot more effective. Made in the USA, the new, patented Hit Zone™ is manufactured and marketed by Metro®, an American manufacturing icon headquartered in Suffern, NY.

The Hit Zoneâ„¢ utilizes a powerful blower motor to suspend lightweight practice balls in a column of air above a reinforced fabric nozzle. The balls float and spin simulating a wide range of pitches that force the batter to keep his or her eye on the ball right up to the point of contact.

“One of the biggest drawbacks of traditional batting tees is fear of hitting and possibly damaging the tee.” Says Ogden…“It causes batters to subconsciously swing high, away from the tee, and make contact with the top of the ball instead of the middle where it belongs. Our Hit Zone™ eliminates this problem by suspending the ball in space with nothing immediately above or below it to distract the eye. In the event a batter swings really low and hits the fabric suspension nozzle, the bat passes right through it. The nozzle pops back up instantly and in most cases the ball even remains suspended. In our exhaustive testing, these nozzles have taken literally hundreds of hard shots without showing any sign of wear.”

In addition to obvious baseball/softball applications, the Hit Zoneâ„¢ is also great for practicing tennis swings and provides all the same advantages.
To capitalize on this, Metro will be targeting both segments separately with either baseball-or-tennis-specific labeling and packaging. There will be three models offered in both segments at different price points:
• The Hit Zone® Standard (MSRP $199.95) Features a 950-Watt, 1.3 Peak HP motor that produces 85 CFM of air suspension power.
• The Hit Zone® Deluxe (MSRP $299.95) Features a 1,200-Watt, 4.0 Peak HP motor that produces 130 CFM of air suspension power.
• The Hit Zone® Deluxe Plus (MSRP $349.50) Same as the Deluxe with the addition of a Variable-speed control that allows the air suspension power to be custom tailored for optimum positioning of a wide range of practice balls for players of any height.

All Hit Zoneâ„¢ blower units are made in the USA from heavy-gauge, powder-coated steel that will stand up to many years of hard use. They incorporate incredibly powerful, yet compact, motors capable of suspending all major brands of lightweight practice balls from approximately eight to eighteen inches above the top of the reinforced fabric nozzle depending on blower model.

All Hit Zoneâ„¢ systems include one replaceable, reinforced-fabric suspension nozzle with clamp and a versatile home plate or tennis base that securely supports the units on virtually any grass, dirt or paved surface. Two dimpled practice balls are included in every package so Hit Zoneâ„¢ can be used right out of the box. Despite their power and durability, Hit Zoneâ„¢ systems are lightweight and compact for easy storage and transport in most equipment bags. Metro also offers a custom-fit Soft-Pack Carry All Bag (MSRP $65.00) sold separately.

The official worldwide introduction of the Hit Zoneâ„¢ brand will take place at the 2012 Outdoor Retailer Summer Market. Metro will be supporting this intro. with a heavy schedule of consumer and trade, print and internet advertising; expanded tradeshow presence and editorial coverage; as well as colorful new self-selling packaging and POP materials.

The full line of Hit Zoneâ„¢ systems will be on display at:
Outdoor Retailer Summer Market Booth #PV-419
Dealer inquiries welcome. For more information call:
1-800-822-1602 or visit:
Hit Zoneâ„¢ is a newly-formed division of Metropolitan Vacuum Cleaner Company, Inc.

Photo Captions:

(Little batter taking a swing:)

Hit Zone™ suspends lightweight practice balls in a column of air above an “indestructible” fabric nozzle. Balls float and spin forcing batters to keep their eye on the ball right up to the point of contact. Works equally well for batters of all ages and levels of skill.

Metropolitan Vacuum Cleaner Company, Inc. was established in 1939 in a small Bronx, NY storefront. From these humble beginnings the company has evolved and grown into a large, multidivisional manufacturing corporation with its headquarters located in Suffern, New York. Over the last 73 years, Metro has pioneered many industry firsts and today, in addition to Hit Zoneâ„¢ Air-Suspension Teesâ„¢, manufactures and markets such well known brands as Magic Air® inflation systems, Data-Vac® computer cleaning systems, Air Force® motorcycle and pet drying systems, Vac’N’Blo® automotive cleaning systems, and many others.