What is Exit Velocity and How Do You Measure It?

what is exit velocity how to measure exit velocity

If you’re involved in the game of  baseball as a player, coach, parent or fan, then there is no doubt that you have heard the term “Exit Velocity” in recent years. But what is exit velocity? There is often confusion as to the exact meaning of the term. In this article we will clear that up for you, as well as show you how to measure exit velocity, why you would want to measure it, and what is the average exit velocity by age.


What is Exit Velocity?

Exit velocity in baseball is the speed the ball is traveling after it hits and leaves a hitter’s bat.

It is not the same as bat speed. Bat speed is the speed of the bat as it is being swung. Bat speed will typically be slower than the exit velocity of the ball itself, but they do have a correlated relationship. The faster your bat speed is, the more likely you are to have a high exit velocity.





Why is Exit Velocity Measured?

As baseball continues to become more analytical and data driven, newer metrics, such as this one, are being measured and used for a variety of reasons. The main purpose for measuring exit velocity is to determine a player’s potential for hitting with power. Hitters with high exit velocity readings have the ability to hit the ball harder, and possibly farther, than those with lower numbers. It is said that for every additional 1 mph of exit velocity, the ball will travel an extra 5 feet

Is it a perfect predictor of if a player will put up power numbers and hit a lot of home runs? Absolutely not. While being able to hit the ball at a high exit velocity is an essential part of being a consistent power hitter, it is one small piece of the puzzle. A hitter’s ability to make consistent contact against pitchers, square the ball up on the barrel of the bat, and hit the ball in the air (launch angle) are also major factors in their potential for putting up power numbers.


Who Uses Exit Velocity Data?

Baseball coaches at all levels, Major League scouts, and Major League front office executives use exit velocity data to evaluate players. If you ever attend a try out or showcase event, odds are that your exit velocity will be recorded.



How to Measure Exit Velocity

What you will need:

Some variables to consider:

  • The exit velocities that you are seeing when you watch a Major League game are off of a pitched ball. Recording exit velocity off of a pitched ball will add approximately 5-15 mph to the reading.
  • Not all baseballs are created equal. A brand new baseball is going to give you a higher exit velocity than an old, beat up one. High quality baseballs, like a professional grade ball, will also give you better readings than balls of a lesser quality.
  • Radar guns are also not all created equal. I’ve seen two guns operating simultaneously that were consistently 4-5 mph off from each other. While Stalker Sport guns are the choice of professional scouts and likely the most accurate guns on the market, I highly recommend the Pocket Radar Ball Coach. It is much more affordable, and has routinely been shown to perform near the level of a Stalker. It’s also extremely user friendly.
  • Some batting tees create more drag on the ball and bat than others. Pro-style tees like the Tanner Tee, are designed to let the ball sit up high on a flexible perch that creates very little drag. It may mean the difference of a couple MPH.
How to measure exit velocity
How to measure exit velocity: This is how you will set it up. My hitting student and I are using a Tanner Tee and a Pocket Radar Ball Coach.

Setting it up:

  • You do not need a full length batting cage or an open field to record exit velocity. Hitting into a screen or net will also give you an accurate measurement.
  • It will be easiest if you have a helper with you to hold the radar gun and do the recording. If you are alone, you will need to find a way to secure the radar gun so that it is pointing toward the flight path that your ball will be traveling on.
  • Have your helper set up a few feet behind you, so that you are hitting the ball directly away from them. Make sure he or she is at a safe distance and will not be hit by your bat on your follow through. If you are hitting into a net or screen, your helper can also choose to position their self behind the screen, and facing you, so that you are hitting directly toward them. Be sure to check the screen for any holes before you hit into the screen with your helper behind it!
  • Set a ball up on the tee and get in position to hit.
  • Have your helper point the radar gun, and prepare to record the ball exit velocity, as instructed by to the radar gun’s manual.
  • Swing and hit the ball as hard as you can.
  • The number that pops up on the radar gun is your exit velocity!
    • Repeat the process several times to try to find your average and high readings.

So I Measured my Exit Velocity, NOW WHAT? (Average exit velocity by age)

Now that you know your exit velocity, you can see where you sit among your peers. 

Here’s the breakdown of what is considered an exceptional exit velocity among each age group:

  • Ages 8-10:  55-65 mph
  • Ages 11-13: 60-70 mph
  • Ages 14-15: 75-80 mph
  • Ages 15-16 (High School JV): 80 mph aluminum/ 75 mph wood
  • Age 16-18 (High School Varsity): 90 mph aluminum/ 85 mph wood
  • Collegiate: 95 mph aluminum/ 90 mph wood
  • Professional: 100 mph +  wood 

How do you measure up? Need to boost your exit velocity?

You can try an overload/underload bat system. They’re scientifically proven to help increase exit velocities!

For more tips on how to INCREASE your exit velocity, check out our article titled

“How to Increase Exit Velocity When Hitting: 5 Quick Tips”


Comments

  1. Tim turner says:

    My son who is 15 years old….6’2”” 192 lbs was just clicked at 85mph exit velocity off of a tee at a university of Illinois camp/showcase. The team manager who was on the gun said that was very solid for a 15 year old. I have a video of his swings if you’d like to see it. I took the video from behind my son.

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Wow, that’s an excellent exit velo for a 15 year old, Tim! Sure, I’d love to see it. I bet he has an explosive swing!

      1. Waite Wilmore says:

        My son’s 15 and off a pitched ball 84 velo wood and 87.5 composite. He’s 6’3″ 210. Hes been swinging wood in BP since he was ten. I know for a fact its increased bat speed as well as exit speed.

        1. Ryan Basham says:

          That’s a great point Waite, and something that I forgot to mention in my “How to Increase Exit Velocity” article. Hitting with a wood bat is a great way to get stronger, and create a more efficient swing. Sounds like your son has the chance to be a monster πŸ™‚ Wish I was blessed with that frame…lol!!!

  2. Todd says:

    Hey Ryan,

    Great article! My son is a 2019 catcher, he recently went to a college camp and hit 99 off the tee with aluminum bat. He hit with wood also but I don’t know what the reading was. They only wrote down his highest velo. I have video of him hitting in a batting cage with cage balls and he is around 96 – 97 with aluminum and 92 – 95 with wood. The reason I like the article so much is because you explain that real quality balls are needed for a more accurate velo. I have video of it all too.

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Thanks for sharing, Todd! Sounds like your son has a ton of power! If he’s not already committed, get that video out to the coaches of schools that he is interested in. Wish him the best of luck in his senior season and with his college recruitment!

  3. My son is 12 years old and his best hit out of like 15 was 66mph. Should he be playing AAA

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      That’s great! It would be hard to decide what level a player should be competing at based off of a single exit velocity reading. There’s a ton of other factors that would help to better determine his ability to compete at a given level. Some that I could think off hand are his basic athletic ability, arm strength, fielding ability, speed & his ability to compete against pitchers of higher velocity.

      1. Anrae Strane says:

        My son is 7th Grader who tops out at 78 MPH off the Tee with his 32/27 -5 Easton Ghost X. Average size kid 5’4” 120 lbs.

        1. Ryan Basham says:

          That’s impressive! I’ve heard a lot of good things about the Easton Ghost X. Sounds like your son likes it too. One of the many great things about baseball is that you don’t need size to be an exceptional player…just ask Jose Altuve!

          1. John henry says:

            Hi Ryan my son is 5’5 139 12 yours old he hits 74 off the tee and hits .749 for travel with a -9 bat

          2. Ryan Basham says:

            That’s fantastic! Remember to keep it fun, but keep grinding!

  4. Noah Murray says:

    Hey Ryan,
    I’m a recently turned 14-year-old eighth grader. My travel team has a facility with Hit Trax, and I’ve had about 5 sessions there so far. I’ve maxed out at 90.2 mph exit velocity. What I’m getting from this site is that my exit velocity is ridiculous for my age. I’m 5′ 8″ and I weigh 165, and I am swinging a -3 715 Louisville Slugger. What are your thoughts?

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Hi Noah,

      One thing to note is that these numbers are based off of hitting the ball from a tee. If you are hitting off of a machine or a live pitch, the numbers will be a bit higher. Regardless, that is a great exit velocity for your age! Keep up the good work, and remember, exit velo isn’t everything! Make sure you’re working on being a well rounded ballplayer!

  5. Tommy Williams says:

    Is 72 mph a good number off a tee and a wood bat for a 12 yeard old boy. My son is 5′ 7″ and 131lbs. Thanks for the good read

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Yes, that is a good exit velocity, especially with a wood bat at his age. Great work, keep it up!

  6. Bryce says:

    Im 13 and get around 85 with a metal bat pretty consistently

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Really impressive, Bryce! Keep up the good work!

  7. Michelle Gaswint Good says:

    Hello my son was just in the all America games and they did evaluations on him and I’m trying to figure out what his numbers should be and if the numbers they gave me are good are not?!?

    Exit velocity-60. Vertical jump-48
    Run and gun- 60 5oz knee throw -45
    Fist is – 5
    Are these good #’s. He is 5’ft tall weighs-86lb
    June 3, 2009- makes him 9yrs old right now

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Hi Michelle, the only thing I can speak on is exit velocity and run and gun throwing velocity. I just did an evaluation of a very talented team at the same age as your son. Your son’s numbers would be near the top of the group. I’d be cautious of putting too much emphasis or concern with the numbers though at his age. You’ll see a lot of kids who have great measurables at 9 years old in comparison to their peers, get surpassed by the time they reach high school. Keep developing good fundamentals, continue getting stronger and more athletic, and the numbers will increase as he gets older.

    2. Jim says:

      If your son has a 48 inch vertical, you need to get him on a basketball court.

      1. Ryan Basham says:

        Lol…No doubt Jim!!!

  8. Steve says:

    My 10 year old son measured 63 off soft toss tonight; smaller kid; he’s 4’6 and weighs around 75#. Did it on hit trax and had a 174 ft shot. He never did this before. Showed him at 87th percentile on distance and 83rd percentile on exit velocity. Thoughts?

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Hi Steve. Good for him! I bet he was excited to see that distance. Hit Trax is an awesome tool, isn’t it? Turns it into a game for the kids. Keep working hard, but working FUN, and I’m certain he’ll continue to develop. Best of luck!

      1. Mark Figueroa says:

        Hello Ryan,
        My son is 5’9″ and is 17
        He swung a 34″ drop 3 aluminum bat that recorded 92mph
        on a pitched ball at a recent national showcase event(recorded by event).
        His size limits his exposure but he works very hard every day to improve.
        Thoughts?

        1. Ryan Basham says:

          Hi Mark,

          I was a small guy too. Same height, at 5’9″. I often wonder if I would have had a Division 1 opportunity this day and age. It seems like guys get pigeon holed because of size even more now. All he can do is focus on what he can control. His attitude and work ethic will determine the most. Not everyone takes a straight path to where they want to go. There are plenty of 5’9″ guys in the Big Leagues! Check out our article on recruiting here…https://baseballmadefun.com/ncaa-college-baseball-recruiting-tips-for-parents-athletes/

          Also, one last thing, a 34 inch bat is pretty large for a kid his age and size. Any thoughts on maybe moving back down to a 33? His exit velo may go up…but then it may not. May be worth trying out at least.

  9. Scott says:

    Hey Ryan,
    My son recently went to a camp where they had the Hit Trax system set up. The coaches at the camp were bragging about my sons exit velo when I arrive to pick him up. They said that 78 was very unusual for 11 year old. He was swinging a -10 bat, so my question is how much of a difference in exit velo will a bbcor or wood bat take off of the 78? Is 78 with a -10 good for a eleven year old. He’s 5’4 and 118.

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Hi Scott,

      That is excellent for his age! Yes, if he used a heavier bat right now, such as a bbcor or wood bat, his velocity would likely go down. I can’t tell you exactly how much, but you can always experiment. There are a lot of factors at play in an exit velocity. Size and strength of the player will determine how much bat speed and energy can be can exerted during the swing, but changing the weight of the bat will also effect that. Between now and the time he has to use a bbcor bat, he’ll likely get bigger and stronger. That will allow him to swing heavier bats faster. A bat with more mass being swung at the same speed or higher, equals more exit velocity.

  10. Sorn says:

    My 12u uses the hit trax system and finally got 80 mph using his voodoo. We keep the hot bats at home. -5 wood is 74-76 mph. 5’8 140. He was geeked finally getting over the 79 he was stuck at for a couple months.

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Great job! Keep working hard!

  11. Danny Smith says:

    My son is a 13 year old 5’6 125 and was just clocked at 78 off of the tee with a BBCOR. He doesn’t believe me that his swing is above average for his age and size.

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      Hey Danny,

      That’s funny! Could be a good thing that he doesn’t believe you. Might keep him hungry to continue getting better! Best of luck!

  12. TheBigDude says:

    TheBigDude: My son is 13; 5’8” 160. Exit velocity with wood bat is 81/mph. #crusher!

    1. Ryan Basham says:

      #crusher for sure…lol! Keep at it buddy!

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