Is there potential for injury in this....?

My son plays on a 13-14yr old Jr. little league team. Last night our catcher couldn’t play so my son ended up catching. He caught 5 innings threw out 3 runners and was very active. The last inning as he is coming into the dugout the coach tells him to hussle down and warm up pitching. While he is throwing, the coach yells to him that he is up and my sons halls butt, graps his stuff and hits. He gets a single, steals 2nd, steals 3rd and then is driven in. Just as he gets in the last out is made and he has to head out to the mound. As he past me he was exhausted, and breathing really hard.

He struggled with his control that inning and walked 2, but ended up striking out the side giving up no runs. However, we had a very short top of the inning and he was right back out in about 5 mins. He walked another batter and then there were two errors. He started getting the ball over the plate but they started hitting him. You could see he just couldn’t get any velocity on the ball and he ended up giving up 4 runs (we were up by 2 before that). I had to tell the coach to take him out because I could see how much he was struggling. He ended up throwing 51 pitches in 2 innings!!!

My question is should a player catch for that many innings then be brought in to pitch? It was mentioned to me after the game that I should not allow them to do that in the futre because there is a very real risk of injury to the arm.

Let me say that I was not happy that he was used as a catcher for 5 innings and then brought in to pitch. It was a very warm night, in the 70s.

I just think that too much was asked of him and he took it very hard after the game. These were the first runs he had given up all season, in fact, he has not given up more than one hit an inning until last night.

Any thoughts on this?

I think moving a kid from behind the plate to the mound within the same game is not a good idea. You say he threw 51 pitches in two innings. How many throws did he make while he was behind the plate?

There are two issues at play here. The first issue is simply the total number of throws and the potential for overuse. If this sort of thing happens a lot, then overuse becomes a concern.

The second issue is fatigue and its effect on proper mechanics. If a pitcher hits the mound already fatigued, then it will probably be more difficult for him to maintain proper mechanics. And that can be a source of injury - especially if coupled with overuse.

If this was a one-time thing, then it’s probably nothing to worry about. But if it occurs on a regular basis, then I would talk to the coach to voice your concern.

that sounds crazy sounds like he depends on your son the most out of anyone in the team :evil:

No.

Catching can be just as hard on the arm as pitching.

When my Ps aren’t pitching, I prefer that they play in the OF or the R side of the IF. At least anywhere but catcher.

In a word, no. Catching is takes a lot of leg strength and the legs play a vital role in pitching. So when you son walks out to the mound he is already fatigued.

Let the coach develope some more pitchers and catchers, Ian