A Break From the Winter Vacation Blues

The Cage

Vacation Hell. PopuIation: you. It’s only mid-break, and your hellions have already broken or grown bored with everything Santa or Hanukkah Harry brought them. Your main squeeze is ready to strangle you if you don’t leave her alone for a few hours. And you? You’re a sight. You’ve put on so much holiday weight that the only thing that fits is the emergency sweatpants with the duct tape waist band.

Instead of pulling your chair up to the fridge again, how about killing 2 birds with one stone, and entertain the kids and get some exercise by grabbing a few swings at The Cage? The DFFD staff made our first pilgrimage there during a recent road trip, and here’s our review of the facility.

You have to love any destination that combines 2 of our favorite things, namely baseball and the Dictators. The Cage is the day gig for our favorite loud guitarist, Ross the Boss. He’ll be behind the counter, handing out the bats, critiquing your swing, and blasting “That Metal Show” on the TV.

The Cage is located at 62-40 Metropolitan Ave in Middle Village, an easy ride for anyone in Queens or Brooklyn, and 2 blocks from the last stop on the M train. “Last stop. M train.” That’s a good line for a song.

This place is HUGE, and top of the line. There are 3 full-time instructors, 8 tunnels, a weight room, an infield area, and a snack bar. Hell, if it had a shower, I’d live there.

The pitching machines, which can be a pain to set up in some places, are simple, and easy to use. The hitter’s backdrop is solid black, absolutely perfect for seeing the ball. And the balls themselves, which are the key aspect at any hitting facility, are uniform.

Permit me to elaborate on this subject. Dimple consistency is the crux to maximizing your time in any batting cage. Most cages leave practice balls in circulation well beyond their point of wear, and mix new ones in sparingly. This saves them $$$, but causes anyone using the cage to waste most of his session calibrating the batting machine between the old and new balls, which react differently in the machine. The Cage is the first and only facility I’ve ever been in that does not do this. They use uniform practice balls, so you spend your entire cage time working on skills, instead of wasting it futzing with the machine and swearing under your breath.

Get off yer a** already, throw the kids in the car, and head over to The Cage.

— Salvi C.  

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