blade12
I am starting to see some crazy pitch counts on HS kids from this week. One report has a boy at 163 another at 152.
Quote 0 0
banks93
blade12 wrote:
I am starting to see some crazy pitch counts on HS kids from this week. One report has a boy at 163 another at 152.

Yes, it is crazy and I would like to see some counts on 10-15 year old kids in a week.

I think they do it by innings a week in high school.
Quote 0 0
smsnyder
It will be interesting to see if organizations like the WIAA will adopt the guidelines now that MLB and USA Baseball have gotten involved. But definitely unbelievable in this day & age that a coach would let a kid throw that many pitches in a game.

One thing is for sure - the WIAA & American Legion should change over to pitch count rather than inning limits. From what I understand, the current WIAA rule is 7 innings pitched over a 3 day period, with 2 days rest to follow.

So banks, from your tone, I take it you're trying to follow the pitchsmart guidelines but think (know) your opponents aren't?

I'll admit I've struggled with it with my 10U kids. We've only had 1 tournament & played 3 games - I did what I could, 6 pitchers who threw between 42 and 77 pitchers over the weekend - but I wasn't 100% within the pitchsmart guidelines. Two kids threw 32 & 36 pitches Saturday night & then 25 & 27 Sunday afternoon. The kid who threw 32 on Saturday night, 1 day/24 hours would've meant he couldn't pitch until Sunday night, so that was technically "cheating" by 4 or 5 hours. And the kid who threw 36 on Saturday night would've meant 2 days rest so he should've been done with only one appearance in the tournament.

Honestly, the pitch limit and the inning limit the tournaments usually use are at odds with each other - to follow the guidelines and work with a 2 inning per game limit is going to be a huge challenge.
Quote 0 0
banks93
Steve,

Yes, a lot of teams don't follow the pitch count numbers. I don't believe the pitch count means everything. It is a combination of overplaying and over pitching. You have to throw to get a stronger arm but I think kids are playing too much with some of the traveling teams and pay to play teams.

We go only two innings at a time and then make them have a game rest. It keeps them around 30 pitches a game. I feel in young kids the 30-40 pitch count number is where kids start getting tired and that is when injuries happen because their mechanics break down. We are trying to only pitch kids no more than 6 innings in a weekend tournament and use 6 pitchers a tournament. We also have two weekday league games and we tell kids not to over pitch during the week in league. They mostly maybe throw one or two innings in two games.

I have seen teams play three game tournaments and have only two or three pitchers throw. They go 3 innings for two pitchers because the tournament gives them 9 innings. We grew up in the innings era and most of us made it through without tommy John or rotator issues. Some of these tournament kids may be throwing 200-300 pitches a week. Is ok if they are 18 and fully developed.

The other issue is we watch who plays catcher so that our pitchers rest two innings before catching.

We changed our way of doing things last year and it seems to be working. We don't win as much but we have developed a deep strong pitching staff and it is also getting other kids pitching time in league games.

We also cut back to 5 tournaments rotating 15 boys. This means we will play 15-20 tournament games and 14 league games. Most likely around 30 games. The most a kid would throw on our team is probably around 15-20 innings over the summer. 300-400 pitches over three months. They may also throw seven innings at league for another 140 pitches. Our pitchers are throwing 400-600 pitches a season.

Some kids are playing tournament teams, league games, fall ball, and winter league. They are getting way over used.

We use to play a lot 8, 9 and 10 but slowed it down the last two years. I did the same thing in basketball.

Hopefully it pays off with well balanced, no burn out or over usage of the kids. We haven't won as much as we did earlier but we are a stronger more balanced team and it is fun to see the growth in the new kids. One of our current best pitchers never pitched as a 9 or 10 year old and can really throw it.
Quote 0 0
smsnyder
banks93 wrote:

Yes, a lot of teams don't follow the pitch count numbers. I don't believe the pitch count means everything. It is a combination of overplaying and over pitching. You have to throw to get a stronger arm but I think kids are playing too much with some of the traveling teams and pay to play teams.

I agree with that. But I think it's definitely better than using innings - innings can be so drastically different. Pitch count at least gives you something objective to look at. If you see a kid struggling, that always trumps the pitch count or innings limit. But just because a kid looks OK doesn't mean he is. At some point it will change, but at least for me, I never take a pitcher who says he's still feeling good at face value. Pitchers lie - good competitors don't want to leave the game. I like to see that attitude, but it just doesn't carry much weight in the decision.

banks93 wrote:
We go only two innings at a time and then make them have a game rest. It keeps them around 30 pitches a game. I feel in young kids the 30-40 pitch count number is where kids start getting tired and that is when injuries happen because their mechanics break down. We are trying to only pitch kids no more than 6 innings in a weekend tournament and use 6 pitchers a tournament. We also have two weekday league games and we tell kids not to over pitch during the week in league. They mostly maybe throw one or two innings in two games.

For the kids I've had, I've definitely seen a similar limit & in my mind, I've had almost a hard limit of 40 pitches in a game period for that reason. They get tired and mechanics break - making them both more at risk and less effective.

You said game rest, not day rest. If you have 3 games in a day, will you sometimes throw a kid in the first and third game? Assuming he's a stronger kid & didn't throw too many pitches. That's where I'm struggling most right now, the low end of the one day rest range - 21-35 pitches. So if he throws 21 pitches, he's supposed to get a day off. 21 pitches Friday night could well mean he's done until Sunday depending on your schedule. 21 pitches Saturday night & for a typical tournament, he'd be done. That seems a bit harsh. I feel like most of these kids aren't really throwing hard yet & they're young & bounce back quickly. My feeling is that pitching games two days in a row or even twice in a day where they throw 25-30 pitches each is better for them than throwing 50 pitches in a single game. The first is against the guidelines, the second is not. The guidelines say 75 pitches in a game and I would never in a million years think that's a good idea.

banks93 wrote:
The other issue is we watch who plays catcher so that our pitchers rest two innings before catching.

I think that's a good adjustment to not having them catch at all. Personally, I think it's really good to have pitchers spend some time behind the plate (and vice versa) at some point. Just the old cross-training thing - when you understand the other side of things a little more, it can help you be better at what you do. But I could be a bit biased there. []


Quote 0 0
banks93
smsnyder wrote:
banks93 wrote:

Yes, a lot of teams don't follow the pitch count numbers. I don't believe the pitch count means everything. It is a combination of overplaying and over pitching. You have to throw to get a stronger arm but I think kids are playing too much with some of the traveling teams and pay to play teams.

I agree with that. But I think it's definitely better than using innings - innings can be so drastically different. Pitch count at least gives you something objective to look at. If you see a kid struggling, that always trumps the pitch count or innings limit. But just because a kid looks OK doesn't mean he is. At some point it will change, but at least for me, I never take a pitcher who says he's still feeling good at face value. Pitchers lie - good competitors don't want to leave the game. I like to see that attitude, but it just doesn't carry much weight in the decision.

banks93 wrote:
We go only two innings at a time and then make them have a game rest. It keeps them around 30 pitches a game. I feel in young kids the 30-40 pitch count number is where kids start getting tired and that is when injuries happen because their mechanics break down. We are trying to only pitch kids no more than 6 innings in a weekend tournament and use 6 pitchers a tournament. We also have two weekday league games and we tell kids not to over pitch during the week in league. They mostly maybe throw one or two innings in two games.

For the kids I've had, I've definitely seen a similar limit & in my mind, I've had almost a hard limit of 40 pitches in a game period for that reason. They get tired and mechanics break - making them both more at risk and less effective.

You said game rest, not day rest. If you have 3 games in a day, will you sometimes throw a kid in the first and third game? Assuming he's a stronger kid & didn't throw too many pitches. That's where I'm struggling most right now, the low end of the one day rest range - 21-35 pitches. So if he throws 21 pitches, he's supposed to get a day off. 21 pitches Friday night could well mean he's done until Sunday depending on your schedule. 21 pitches Saturday night & for a typical tournament, he'd be done. That seems a bit harsh. I feel like most of these kids aren't really throwing hard yet & they're young & bounce back quickly. My feeling is that pitching games two days in a row or even twice in a day where they throw 25-30 pitches each is better for them than throwing 50 pitches in a single game. The first is against the guidelines, the second is not. The guidelines say 75 pitches in a game and I would never in a million years think that's a good idea.

banks93 wrote:
The other issue is we watch who plays catcher so that our pitchers rest two innings before catching.

I think that's a good adjustment to not having them catch at all. Personally, I think it's really good to have pitchers spend some time behind the plate (and vice versa) at some point. Just the old cross-training thing - when you understand the other side of things a little more, it can help you be better at what you do. But I could be a bit biased there. []




Yes, we will throw kids 2 innings the first game and then 2 innings the third game. The rules of 30-40 pitches and then sitting a day are not very accurate if you play how we do in WI in my opinion. If a kid throws more than 40 pitches a game you need to get him out.

I would say the sweet spot is about 30-40 pitches per game and then the kid is resting until the next game or next day. We usually only play two games a day in most tournaments. We played three this weekend and nobody had an issue.

We use the game changer IPAD program and it does a great job of keeping pitch count and stats on pitchers.

We have played 8 total games this season in three tournaments and are 4-3-1.

Here is our stats on pitchers for those three tournaments. 8, 15, and 12 have played one more tournament than 11, 1 and 5.

8 -10 ip - 147 pitches - 14.7p/in - 14 K
15 - 8.2 ip - 174 pitches - 21.2p/in - 11 K
11 - 6 ip - 106 pitches - 17.7p/in - 9 K
1 - 6 ip - 115 pitches - 19.2p/in - 9 K
12 - 5.1 ip - 84 pitches - 16.5p/in - 4 K
5 - 3 ip - 70 pitches - 23.3p/in - 3 K
Three other pitchers have 5 ip.

Most of our kids are under or around 20 p/in. A couple kids had a bad inning which raised their number above it. I feel that a safe number of pitches per inning for a young kid is 20-25 pitches, if a kid throws over 25 pitches we usually are pulling them out of the game for giving up to many hits, runs or walking too many batters. I am not a big believer in letting a kid finish an inning and letting them struggle. I would rather get the kid out and let them pitch the next time. Kids at a young level are going to have good innings and bad innings. We are just trying to build some consistency and get them some experience.

We have had zero arm issues on our team the last two years and if a kid would develop a sore arm from pitching he would not be allowed to pitch. When our boys were 9 and 10 we use to over pitch a couple kids.

A 6 kid rotation for the weekend is a very good rotation because most tournaments we enter we only play 3-4 games. Each kid is either getting 2IP or 4IP for the weekend. If they pitch 4IP one weekend we will switch the rotation the next week to try and get the other 3 pitchers 4IP. It seems to be working pretty good the last two years.

At the 13U level then they start to pitch 4-5 innings/game and are done for the week.

We don't have anyone throwing curve balls yet. We face some teams that have been throwing them for a couple years.
Quote 0 0
formerwiacbaseballer
In my opinion, there is WAY too much emphasis on tournament play right now...

Seems like the days of playing in your local league (age 9-12) two nights a week for six weeks and then competing in a couple of tournaments after the season is a thing of the past. We had four teams in the 9-10 age group and five in the 11-12 age group. Players were "drafted" after tryouts in the beginning of May, and then played 12 games over the course of six weeks. Each team then had 3-4 pitchers who all got plenty of mound time throughout the summer. Once the league was completed, a "Tournament Team" was selected from the four or five league teams and we went and played two or three tournaments to finish the season.

The nice thing about this, coaches didn't have to worry about balancing who to pitch during the week vs weekend tournaments. Most of our pitchers threw well (nobody that overpowering) and curveballs weren't allowed. Did it put us at a disadvantage come tournament time? Sure, but we also "learned" how to pitch by locating a fastball and throwing strikes.

I ended up pitching in 17? out of 21 games as a high school senior, and still pitch in the local amateur league 20 years later. My high school coach would likely be crucified if he tried to do that now!!
"Let's Play Two!!!"

Baseball is not a game that builds character, it is a game that reveals it.

"There are three types of baseball players: those who make things happen, those who watch it happen, and those who wonder what happened."
Quote 0 0
banks93
formerwiacbaseballer wrote:
In my opinion, there is WAY too much emphasis on tournament play right now...

Seems like the days of playing in your local league (age 9-12) two nights a week for six weeks and then competing in a couple of tournaments after the season is a thing of the past. We had four teams in the 9-10 age group and five in the 11-12 age group. Players were "drafted" after tryouts in the beginning of May, and then played 12 games over the course of six weeks. Each team then had 3-4 pitchers who all got plenty of mound time throughout the summer. Once the league was completed, a "Tournament Team" was selected from the four or five league teams and we went and played two or three tournaments to finish the season.

The nice thing about this, coaches didn't have to worry about balancing who to pitch during the week vs weekend tournaments. Most of our pitchers threw well (nobody that overpowering) and curveballs weren't allowed. Did it put us at a disadvantage come tournament time? Sure, but we also "learned" how to pitch by locating a fastball and throwing strikes.

I ended up pitching in 17? out of 21 games as a high school senior, and still pitch in the local amateur league 20 years later. My high school coach would likely be crucified if he tried to do that now!!


Yes, the youth league problem is an issue in many towns.

You have the top kids that want to play a more competitive type of baseball but are being held back and not advanced so they become bored and move on to travel teams instead of league play to get the better brand of baseball. There are similar issues and problems in every town and the better kids migrate to these pay to play travel teams to get a more competitive type of baseball. This causes the number of town league teams to go down and then the play of league is so bad that the other kids that play tournament baseball don't want to participate in the league anymore because the games are so bad you sit there for an hour and a half watching walks, kids that can't throw or catch a baseball making errors and kids stealing every base. The league now instead of 5 teams has two or three teams and nobody wants to coach or play in the league.

I believe the high school coaches need to get involved at the local league levels and make town leagues a better type of baseball from an early age level. Instead a lot of them worry about the town tournament teams and the league level of play is suffering because of it and you lose a lot of potential good kids for baseball.

Go 7-8, 9-10, 11-12. If the advanced kids want to play some better ball play up in competition. You don't have to travel all around the country to find good competition for baseball, just play up.

There is no reason a HS kid should ever pitch in 17 of 21 high school games. Your coach was not doing you any favors. That is the poster example of OVERUSAGE.

You obviously have a strong arm to be able to still be pitching 20 years later. Do you play in BABA league?
Quote 0 0
taiwegian
In a Div I regional final last week in my area, I heard/read that one of the pitchers threw 150+ pitches. Of interest to me, he pitched innings 1-5, was taken out for the 6th and then pitched innings 7-10. I don't follow baseball closely, as my kids play other sports. However, I find it very surprising (and disappointing) that HS pitchers are allowed to reach such high pitch counts. I assumed that HS baseball would have similar pitch count rules to little league, but that clearly is not the case. I also wonder about putting a pitcher back into the game after being removed- I have not heard of this being done before. Does it cause more stress to the pitching arm? I'd appreciate the thoughts of those who follow the game closely.
Quote 0 0
formerwiacbaseballer
banks93 wrote:
There is no reason a HS kid should ever pitch in 17 of 21 high school games. Your coach was not doing you any favors. That is the poster example of OVERUSAGE.

You obviously have a strong arm to be able to still be pitching 20 years later. Do you play in BABA league?

And that is where I disagree.... That's the problem with applying a "cookie cutter" rule to everyone. Everyone isn't built the same, nor have they put in the same amount of work to build strength and improve.

I started "long-tossing" with my dad when I was ten years old, and before that threw to a brick wall with a chalk outline on it 2-3 nights per week. (Probably more than the 21-40 pitches some chart suggests.) Add in the fact that I didn't "experiment" with curve balls until I was in high school, and I was able to develop a "strong" arm. I never threw any harder than the low 80's, but I was still able to have differing levels of success.

Now some will argue that my experience is the exception to the rule. I would argue that the "work" I put in as a youngster is what allowed me to pitch competitively for over 25+ years without a single arm related injury/soreness.

As far as my high school coach, it's all a matter of what you believe. I believe he did me a favor by not asking me to throw CG's on a regular basis. The more I threw, the more effective I was. It was when I had long layoff period, that I usually struggled most.

Let it be known however, that I didn't take this same philosophy as a coach. I rarely had kids throw over 100 pitches, and wouldn't let them start the next inning anytime they were over 90 pitches.
"Let's Play Two!!!"

Baseball is not a game that builds character, it is a game that reveals it.

"There are three types of baseball players: those who make things happen, those who watch it happen, and those who wonder what happened."
Quote 0 0
blade12
When the professional pitchers who are older, more physically developed, better conditioned, with better coaching, better mechanics and better treatment after throwing are being limited to most often under 110 pitches that tells me something.

Quote 0 0
john42
blade12 wrote:
When the professional pitchers who are older, more physically developed, better conditioned, with better coaching, better mechanics and better treatment after throwing are being limited to most often under 110 pitches that tells me something.



That the pitchers are paid a half a billion dollars?
"If I caught 756, I'd take a sharpie out of my pocket and draw on asterisk on it then hand it to Barry for free."

? Rubenonfire
Quote 0 0
blade12
john42 wrote:
blade12 wrote:
When the professional pitchers who are older, more physically developed, better conditioned, with better coaching, better mechanics and better treatment after throwing are being limited to most often under 110 pitches that tells me something.



That the pitchers are paid a half a billion dollars?


No, no, no, that's only Lohse, Garza and Broxton.
Quote 0 0
formerwiacbaseballer
blade12 wrote:
When the professional pitchers who are older, more physically developed, better conditioned, with better coaching, better mechanics and better treatment after throwing are being limited to most often under 110 pitches that tells me something.

Me too.... Teams have so much money invested in these guys that you'll never see another Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson or Don Drysdale make 40 starts in a season again.

There weren't any pitch counts back then, and they seemed to be alright.... [:%]
"Let's Play Two!!!"

Baseball is not a game that builds character, it is a game that reveals it.

"There are three types of baseball players: those who make things happen, those who watch it happen, and those who wonder what happened."
Quote 0 0
banks93
Yes, I agree with you on building a stronger arm at an early age and this requires you to play a lot of catch. I don't think that means you need to be pitching in 81% of high school games. Most high schools play two games a week. If you were to pitch in 50% of the games or once a week. I could see maybe doing 3 innings twice a week if you watched a pitchers pitch count close and had two days rest in between games.

We also use to only play baseball for a 3-4 month window in WI and be done with baseball. The kids these days are playing baseball year round with inside facilities and are not getting 8 months of rest. Football starts in August, basketball starts in November, and Baseball starts in March. There is no rest between seasons anymore everything is blended together.

Some of these kids are just throwing and playing way to many games in a year.
Quote 0 0
wissportsnet

Boys Basketball Alumni Round-up: February 21st, from @ColtonWilson23 #wisbb -- https://t.co/0K6CZzZWpf https://t.co/715tfpBGVS

wissportsnet

WSN15: Boys Basketball Top Teams #12 -- Two NCAA Division I players at one WIAA Division 4 school = state champions… https://t.co/1MThqzce9L

wissportsnet

Predicting winners of every state wrestling title plus a look By The Numbers, from @Nate_Woelfel -… https://t.co/HgU1bLP7d6

wissportsnet

Join the free Boys Basketball Playoff Pick 'Em Contest; Staff picks coming Tuesday #wisbb -- https://t.co/Y6yTA3OgP8 https://t.co/hA6Uyw9uje