Pitch counts make little difference in high school baseball

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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby Sean Stackhouse » Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:48 pm

TAL, here is the problem with leaving it up to parents:

http://www.littleleague.org/learn/newsl ... ssions.htm

This is not an isolated case. There are many parents who do not understand the importance of not throwing too much.

There are many coaches who do not understand this.

There are NOT many governing bodies charged with the task of writing baseball rules who do not understand this. In fact, I'd say they all do because they regularly hear testimony from medical professionals and current/former coaches and athletes on the subject. I trust their findings, and I also accept that any restrictions they set will be at least slightly excessive in the interest of safety. So if that means a 3 minute delay while another pitcher has to come into the game and get the last out, or that pitcher isn't able to... At least I know the rule is well-intended and we're not bending the rules for the sake of winning a high school (or lower level) baseball game.
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby TAL1957 » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:03 pm

This is not about Little League players, it's about HS. A world of difference. I'm also not gonna place a whole lot of weight on that "nice" confession of the regretful parent without a heck of a lot more detailed knowledge of the specific circumstances. Was the kid throwing a ton of curveballs (which I do believe is a mistake before the age of 14-15, and even then should be limited given the pretty much equal value of a decent changeup). Sounds like depending on what "a Lot" means, this kid had clueless parents, team coaches, and private coaches ?? Hmmm ..... ???? Maybe the kid just had an inherent problem that woulda manifested itself regardless ? Maybe, maybe, maybe not ??

Any kid good enuf at the HS level that the coach wants to pitch him a lot, is gonna have parents, and/or probably coaches and friends, who are at least moderately familiar with the issue at that point. At least that has been my experience with lots of HS and travel team players/pitchers.
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby mushing5 » Tue Feb 09, 2016 10:14 pm

Kids don't throw enough.
No pitch counts.
Leave things the way they are, nobody is dying out there.
Let coaches have Sunday's to work with players on offseason sports (imagine if kids started throwing January 1st instead of March 21st)
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby throwinheat5 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 7:53 pm

As a college pitcher and now a high school coach I have mixed feelings about pitch coach vs innings limit. My first thought is not all pitches are equal..there have been times when I have had a kid throw 90 plus pitches and been completely comfortable with him and sometimes that same pitcher at 60 it just isnt there. In the same breathe i do feel in most cases that having kids throw Monday and then again Friday with the 3 days rest is way to much work. I have always structured my pitching staff to have 3 starters so with Maine's high school schedule ends up being a start a week. I feel this paid huge dividends at the end of the year, guys seemed fresh plus come playoff time we had a deeper staff to deal with.
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby Yaz8 » Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:56 pm

There's research that says more throwing makes you stronger, if done correctly. Much like other muscles in the body. Will the MPA limit the amount of miles a cross country runner can run during the season? Leave it to the MPA to make sure that no kid can get ahead. God forbid he take lessons and practice over the winter to strengthen his arm, only to be removed after 5 innings every game.

I would echo the thoughts above, once a week is a good rotation for high school. A week is enough time to recover from 100 pitches. My issue is more with coaches who use the limits as the minimum & maximum. Seeing guys throw Monday and Friday and Wednesday and Monday.... I remember seeing one SMAA team who had some stud arms and being surprised to see how often their names in the box score. Two Div 1 pitchers end up as DH and out of baseball.
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby baseballmind » Sun Feb 28, 2016 2:19 am

I have a problem how they are going to keep track. anybody have any idea how they are going to keep track?
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby Willy13 » Sun Feb 28, 2016 11:54 am

The pitch count is a bit excessive. Pitchers should get so many innings per week. It takes a good 3-4 weeks to build arm strength. I honestly think the high school coaches should be allowed to work with the kids earlier in the spring, to one develop better mechanics, and to build the arm strength up for game situation. This spring for example, they'll have a week to build arm strength (which is not enough) and scrimmages could be lined up in March. Basketball is over, lets build some arm strength and work on mechanics..
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby smedlap33 » Sun Feb 28, 2016 3:11 pm

Why wait, if this is such a good idea, lets implement it this year. My observations are that some coaches leave a kid down in the bullpen to get loose and they can throw 50 more pitches in the bullpen. Pitch count is a more accurate measure of use. Let's do it this year , or would it upset the applecart. Little league does it at all levels, it's not brain surgery. Why the wait?
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby Mhunt36 » Mon Feb 29, 2016 5:32 pm

My take on this is that I hope that they are not considering a cap at 100 pitches. A junior or senior pitcher with solid mechanics in the throes of the 6th or 7th inning of a key game should be able to stay in a game if they are nearing or around 100 pitches. Here is how I would handle pitch count limitations--

1. 90+ pitches (capped at 120) would require 5 full days rest.
2. 50-90 pitches would require 3 full days rest.
3. 25-50 would require 1 full day rest
4. <25 pitches could come back the following day.

This would accomplish roughly what the current limitations seek to do, with the addition of more rest for lengthy starts. 50-90 pitches would be that 3+ innings. 25-50 would be up to three innings. Under 25 would be that 1 inning.

I am also a strong advocate for different sub-varsity rules. I could see capping them at 90-100 pitches. Often times the sub-varsity coaches are less aware of mechanics, arm conditioning, etc.

I also am hoping that they really take some time to vet ideas through coaches around the state, as opposed to making a hasty decision. I'd like to see them take the next 2 seasons to work through it and implement it in 2018.

The last thing I want is to have to take out my stud pitcher in a state championship game because he hits 100 pitches after 6 innings. 120 is a more reasonable number to cap. I would hope most coaches know how to manage their pitchers throughout the season. I know that we are very cognizant of that.
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Re: Maine hs moving toward pitch-count restrictions

Postby thebam » Mon Feb 29, 2016 7:05 pm

baseballmind wrote:I have a problem how they are going to keep track. anybody have any idea how they are going to keep track?

I think the way to do this is have the official scorekeeper of both teams (who is keeping the book) get together at the end of each half inning and compare stats.. agree on the number and give it to the Home Plate Umpire.. he makes the note, similarly I assume to the way they keep track of Innings Pitched now? There is plenty of time during warmup throws to accomplish this .. hell even hand signals back and forth and the home guy go tell the umpire.
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