13U - 54' or 60'6" Pros & Cons?

If a upcoming 13U pitcher has league options, what are the pros & cons of playing in 54’ (Pony League) league vs. 60’6" (Babe Ruth)?

Depends where he’s coming from. If it was 12u Little League at 46’, then jumping to 60’ can be a bit much. It’s not that it’s not doable. But I prefer a more gradual progression so kids don’t do things like altering throwing mechanics just to make the distance. But, either way, I wouldn’t get too worried about it.

If making the jump to 60’, start practicing it early and gradually even if that means practicing on your own before the team starts practicing/playing at that distance. This will help avoid a sore arm later.

In my 13u league, its called “USSSA” and 11-12 is 50’, 13-14 is 54’, and 15 and up is 60’ 6’’. I think it works best because you can progress as you get older.

Thanks for the feedback. In this particular case, he is coming from 46’ with some limited experience at the 50’ distance (Cooperstown Dreams Park, etc…).

I just wasn’t sure if there were any studies or bodies of work that suggested that a gradual approach was better for long-term arm development. In addition, school ball (7th grade) will be at the 60’6" distance which poses another issue in terms of consistency if he went the 54’ route.

[quote=“mickbosox”]Thanks for the feedback. In this particular case, he is coming from 46’ with some limited experience at the 50’ distance (Cooperstown Dreams Park, etc…).

I just wasn’t sure if there were any studies or bodies of work that suggested that a gradual approach was better for long-term arm development. In addition, school ball (7th grade) will be at the 60’6" distance which poses another issue in terms of consistency if he went the 54’ route.[/quote]

If he’ll pitch at all for the school at the 60 ft distance, I would go with the longer distance in summer ball as well.

Hose

My son is 13 and has played up in travel ball for a number of years.They pitch at 54’.At 14u travel they go to 60’-90’.This rule was implemented about 3yrs ago and still is debated.My son decided to stay down in his age group this season to get stronger(13u).We have played some games on the full-size fields already and the kids adapted well.My son practices his pitching at 60’and is instructed on 60’ and it doesn’t seem to bother him.He’s a submarine pitcher(not taught) so this has improved his velocity as well as his ability to shoot the corners and work on pitches.I think working with an instructor and at 60’ at this age will improve a young pitcher as long as he is being monitored and the pitcher knows enough to stop throwing if he feel ANY discomfort in his arms or legs.