Lots of great thoughts in this old thread. Thanks go out to PitchersWorkshop for resurrecting it! I voted sometimes even though I prefer coaches to call none or only certain pitches because I think we have to realize that sometimes, for development purposes and lack of practice time at the youth level, there isn't enough pre-season or between-games practice time. Even at that level, it's not necessarily beneficial for coaches to call pitches since the pitchers only really have fastball or change up. If I can tell you what he's throwing next without seeing the signs, I may go out and have a chat or take over calling pitches until the end of the side and have a bench discussion about predictability. Obviously, as the age goes up, the need for coaches to be involved in the signal calling should diminish.
I liked a lot of stuff so don't feel badly if I didn't take some of your golden nuggets, but these statements sort of resonated for me in some way...
This put a smile of remembrance on my face.
This is a great philosophy for a reliever or closer. I just like to use a bit of caution with my starter if he has the pitches (selection and available pitches until reaching his limit) to go deep in the game, too many fastballs can really stress the arm and reduce his ability to endure to his pitch limit. But, yes, I like challenging hitters to do something with your best pitch. "Here it is, tough guy, whatcha gonna do with this?" If that pitch happens to be the fastball, so be it.
Completely agree with managing during the game. Again, I make a stipulation for youth games. Often lack of sufficient practice time necessitates doing some coaching during the games. Also, at my level, due to substitution rules, the best possible defense is only on the field 2 innings out of 6.
Not sure I really agree with that. I've seen pitchers struggling with a pitch, never shake it off. I'm all for trying to re-establish a pitch by continuing to mix it in, but many fail to shake off pitches when they should. To me, that means the pitcher doesn't really have a feel for what he's doing well at the time. When the pitcher is feeling it, certainly, the coach should be comfortable with the battery calling the game.
Yes, I'll often call pitches with runners on first base or bunt situations. Young pitchers often don't have a feel for situational pitching. They are focused on the hitter without taking in everything else. Certainly, the pitcher should be focused on the pitch, but be aware of the situation.
Absolutely, a coach never wants to mess with a pitcher and catcher in rhythm.
Solid advice about when to talk about things. Coaches should never use a mound visit to get inside the pitcher's head. Discuss alternative options when your team is at bat.
It's better to be down than any other single location alone. Unless you have great control, I would not advise elevating the change-up even if it may be a good call.
This topic should be moved to golden threads for sure!