So in highschool, do you also throw 100 pitches just a Major Leaguer or do you throw less so you don’t screw up your arm?
It depends on how you feel and whether you think you might be tiring a bit. I saw the Cleveland-Seattle game the other night in which Cliff Lee was pitching. He got to 101 pitches by the ninth inning, and it’s at that point that most managers would take a guy out of the game, but Cleveland manager Eric Wedge saw that, if anything, Lee was picking up steam and decided to let him try to go all the way. And Lee did just that; he pitched a very strong ninth inning (gave up one hit, but what did that matter?) and came away with a complete-game 4-1 win. And so—if you think you can go beyond 100 pitches, at least for one more inning, go ahead. If not—ask the manager or coach who whoever to bring in a reliever.
The other side of the issue concerns old-timer Preacher Roe. It was probably the fourth or fifth inning, and he seemed to be losing it. His manager came out to the mound and asked him how he was feeling. Roe replied in that slow drawl of his: “W-e-e-e-e-l-l…I ain’t got no pain…I ain’t got no fatigue…and by golly, I ain’t got a thing on the ball!” So the manager had to take him out of the game. Still another slant on the whole business concerns Vic Raschi, the Yankee fireballer who pitched for them from the tail end of 1946 to the end of 1953. He was a tough customer indeed. There might be a time when he would run into trouble, and Yogi Berra would go out to the mound only to be greeted with “Just give me the ---- ball and get the hell out of here” or an even surlier “Yogi, you’re going to lose that sorry — of yours if you don’t get back behind the plate!” Those were sweet words indeed for the Yankees, because they indicated that the Springfield Rifle was back on track. But there was one occasion…
Raschi was apparently tiring. It was the seventh inning or so, and at one point he stepped off the mound and looked wistfully over at third base. When Bobby Brown, who was playing third, came over to talk to him Raschi looked at him and asked plaintively, “Where have you BEEN?” And that told manager Casey Stengel in no uncertain terms to get the bullpen warming up in a hurry. In came Allie Reynolds, and he finished the game with no further scoring on the part of the opposition.
Again, I say—it’s entirely up to you, how you’re feeling, whether you think you can go another inning or whether you should have your manager or coach bring in a relief man. 8) :baseballpitcher:
Generally in my expirience, 90-100 pitches is about the ceiling for highschoolers, but thats just my coach. And pitch counts are really a relative thing in the first place, theres a lot more factors you need to take into account other than just that.
To me it all depends on how your arm is feeling. There are some kids on my team who’s arm is tired after 50 pitches and some who top out around 100. Me, I threw 130+ pitches in a 7 inning game and was fine the next day. It really all depends on your arm type and condition.
My HS kids often come into the season not having thrown enough long toss/bullpens or done enough pitching-specific workouts. As our season starts 3 weeks after the first legitimate time I can contact them directly, many are not fit to even take the mound for 10 pitches, much less 100 pitches.
Whew! Let me start over…
Somebody once said: You can take a thoroughbred race horse and train him to run one city block, and that’s all he’ll ever be able to do. The same could be said about those pitchers you mention who can barely throw ten pitches, never mind a hundred. What does that say about some of their coaches? :shock:
I like to go either into the seventh or finish it strong. My bull pen is always shaky so theres alot of pressure on my to go deep into the game. But i usally am forced to go into the 8th, even if i am giving up runs left and right.
It depends on the pitches per inning. I mean personally I think many pitchers could go a long time when they throw between 14-18 pitches per inning. The problem gets to when a pitcher has innings where they go 25-30 pitches, that inning does a lot more damage. It also depends on the pitcher some guys can go longer some can’t. Maddux, from watching him, was usually done around 90 pitches. Smoltz could usually go around 110 or so. It depends on the pitcher.
pitches per inning is a big factor. i think its more important than total pitch count. ive got a good guideline to go by on that i’ll post when i find it. that is if im able to post at all - its been a struggle to get this to work on my computers.
FWIW - Pitching coach Ron Woolforth philosophy is based on a per inning pitch count. He has some specific guidelines. I think he wants around 15 pitches an inning. Then he has guidelines about what happens if you exceed that pitch count per inning. I think he says if you throw between 25-30 pitches in any one inning you are done. I don’t know - if this is right or wrong - that is just what he says.
I do not advocate the 100 pitch limit, I consider the weather outside. If it is in the 30’s limit the kid to 30-40 pitches or so. If its 40 limit the kid to 40-50, if it is 60 limit them to 60-70 and if its 70, limit them to 70-80 80 or above, then they can go until 100 if they aren’t too tired. When it is cold outside it is much more difficult to stay loose. I know 70 degrees can be more flexible than I have listed but I am careful with my pitchers. Anyway, this is what I do and believe in it. I realize that there are some circumstances where you are compelled to win a game and feel that you must throw more, but I urge coaches to have a specific plan for the game and set limits before the pitcher goes out. When a pitcher knows what is expected of him and realizes you want 60 good pitches and not the whole game, he will give you 60 good pitches. If he is mid inning, let him finish, but when the expectations are lower pitchers rise to the occasion because there is less pressure.
Anyway, this is my opinion.
kyleb has pretty much said it for a lot of youth ball, with the exception of those programs and players that are committed to a quality routine that enlists a ton of self discipline and a burning desire to excel at this sport. One of the many reasons why coaching at this level is so difficult and demanding.
Many district authorities that govern high school sports have placed limitations on sports development during the normal off-season due to abuses in the past with respect to over zealous parents, high school coaching and attention to win-win-win, thropy case glitter, and braging rights… all at the expense of academics and developing social skills outside of the athletic experience. Now I’m not coming down on one side or the other on the these issues - personally I’m not involved with such activity …nor will I. But I’ve been witness to the drawbacks of lopsided attention spans and their not good for the youngster nor do they provided added value to the community that their in.
On the other hand, I’ll be the first to admit - would I turn away a hot prospect with below average academics that could get my club and me the top spot in our league’s standing … nope… I’m not adverse to that. So, a little reasonability at the high school level and below can take the “below average academics” out of the mix … then the “hot prospect” himself has a better chance of things outside of my intentions to use him like nothing-more-or-less than a tool.
I know the foregoing is a little off the topic … but kyleb made an observation that was just too good to pass up.
My experience has been at the HS level, 100 pitches is about limit of what should be thrown. I have seen many kids go to the 100 count, then bad things start to happen.
Saw one of our varsity pitchers twice lose games that he pitched very well and lost it in the 7th once he went over the 100 mark. Saw a couple of others that we beat because pitcher went too far and we got to him late. I am sure there are those who can go over and be effective, but I think you are asking for trouble with overuse issues.
Hopefully, a pitcher can get the job done in fewer pitches. I think most HS programs as well as summer programs need to develop quality closers so you don’t have to send a starter out for that many pitches.