Rest time between game pitching?

The following is taken from a national organizations rules; DB refers to 13-14yr olds. I’m with them on the pitch limits in general but the rest period seems inadequate. Using these limitations will allow a kid to pitch up to 95 pitches on Saturday morning & turn around a pitch up to 95 again on Monday evening. Seems to me one days (or even two) rest is woefully inadequate. Have read other recommendations and would like some opinions.

—8:00—THE PITCHER——
8:01 (Regular Season Only .) Players on a regular season team may pitch in any game during the regular season subject to the following limitations . (30/40 HOUR RULE) NOTE: *An innings rule is added . For the purpose of satisfying the require- ment of Rule 8:90 (Regular Season Only) the throwing of one pitch in any inning constitutes having pitched a complete inning . 8:90—A pitcher shall not be allowed to pitch in more than eight (8) innings in any one calendar week . 8:90DB: A pitcher shall not throw more than 95 pitches in the same game or on the same day . 8:90DM: A pitcher shall not throw more than 105 pitches in the same game or on the same day . Exception DB/DM: If the pitcher reaches the pitch count limit while facing a batter, he may continue to pitch until the batter reaches base safely or is put out . 8 .91—A pitcher is charged with the number of pitches hurled, as well as the innings pitched in a specific calendar week, regardless of whether they are local league games, the resumption of suspended games, exhibition games, or games ruled “no contest” due to being called . A calendar week is from 12:01 a .m . Monday to 12:00 midnight the following Sunday . 8 .92—If a game is interrupted for any reason before becoming official, and is suspended, the same pitcher may continue when play is resumed, provided he is eligible by the rest rule and has not used up his total allotted innings per calendar week . League officials should consider the (30/40) hour rest period when rescheduling the completion of a suspended game . NOTE: Innings pitched in the suspended and resumed portions of a sus- pended game shall not be added in order to disqualify a player from pitching . 8 .93—RESERVED . Entering the ball game as a pitcher shall constitute hav- ing pitched one inning . 8 .94—The intent of Rules 8 .90-8 .96 is to help prevent arm injuries and to eliminate the possibility of a team winning a league championship using only one pitcher . These rules will also force a manager to develop other boys’ pitching talents . (a) A pitcher after throwing more than 60 pitches in one game or on the same day shall have a minimum of forty (40) hours rest before becoming eligible to pitch in another game . The rest period begins when pitcher leaves the mound . (b) A pitcher after having thrown more than 30 but less than 61 pitches in the same game or on the same day shall have a minimum of thirty (30) hours rest before becoming eligible to pitch in another game . The rest period shall begin when pitcher leaves the mound

I don’t like calendar week limits for the fact you mention above–over use is sanction if pitching at the end and start of two weeks. Eligibility should be based on when each player last pitched, then give rest based on the number of pitches thrown.
More pitches thrown provides more rest somewhere between 0-5 days (or longer if the coach deems necessary).

One-size-fits-all pitch counts are horribly inaccurate, but it’s the easiest way to go. Pitch counts are set based on low-end estimates of the least conditioned kids with poor mechanics. This requires coaches to lengthen bullpen sessions to develop the arms.

This year, to lengthen the season, the town eliminated the outdoor practice period and opted to start playing games immediately and have instituted a progressive pitch count structure. Every two weeks the allowed pitch totals jump by 20 pitches until week 6 when the highest max of 85 is allowed. This will force coaches to use kids with little or no ability on the mound in the first few weeks just to have enough arms to match the number of innings needed.

On its face, that sounds like something reasonable, and makes me wonder about something. What would materially change, and would it change for the better or worse, if it were somehow mandatory that all players on a rec team had to be given opportunities to pitch before a pitcher could pitch again?

The reason I ask is that I often wonder how many pitchers are missed simply because they never got the opportunity.

The pitch limits & IP per week seem pretty reasonable but it’s the rest time between outings that is way too short. Rather than a set number of days rest based on pitch count required they use a 30/40 rule (hours rather than days). The IP is reset each calandar week (Mon-Sun) making scenerio I mentioned possible. In addition; in absence of extreme example I used pitching with only two days rest is allowed (40 hrs) after pitching max 95 pitches in game (would apply during week). In most extreme case (example I used of Sat & Mon); it is permissible for 13 & 14 yr olds to pitch 190 game pitches in three days.

I try everyone on the mound in practice. Believe me, you don’t want watch what you would get if everyone who laces them up pitched in games. No fun to coach, watch, or be in the field. It would get really ugly really fast.

I can definitely see some coaches taking advantage of these rules with his stud pitcher, especially if the season comes down to crucial games toward the playoffs.

I have no problem with kids throwing 90 to 95 pitches in a game, but they need mandated time off of the mound. IMO it should be minimum of 5 days off for that age.

[quote=“Turn 22”]I can definitely see some coaches taking advantage of these rules with his stud pitcher, especially if the season comes down to crucial games toward the playoffs.

I have no problem with kids throwing 90 to 95 pitches in a game, but they need mandated time off of the mound. IMO it should be minimum of 5 days off for that age.[/quote]

That’s a lot closer to what my sons pitching coach recommends. After 95 pitches or anything close to range; run day one, throw & long toss day two and bullpen day three or four but preferably day before next outing. He’s ok with pitching again on either day 4 or 5. Son’s come back to local league for past two years due to late start to travel. Ran into conflict last year with coach planning to start my son on a Monday after around 95 pitch outing proceeding Saturday. This past Friday son pitched maximum on Friday & coach planned to start son Monday (tomorrow); I was not agreeable either time. Coach last year was not very understanding to my position. Coach this year has no problem after I explained why I don’t want him to pitch. Seems as though pitching rules in this league leave lots of opportunity for overuse. Honestly have no problems with UTrip other than not having pitch count limits. Inning rules seem to leave less open to overuse than league although high pitch count innings in tournament ball can leave the door open to way to many pitches over weekend.

It’s good to see a dad take charge over their son’s health. Kudos for speaking up to the coach.

I like the in between work your pitchers do. The only thing I would change is the pen thrown on the day before they pitch. At that age I would like to see a day between the pen session and game day. The day before a mound appearance, I personally like guys to do light throwing. Light mostly to get a good stretch.

[quote=“Turn 22”]
I like the in between work your pitchers do. The only thing I would change is the pen thrown on the day before they pitch. At that age I would like to see a day between the pen session and game day.[/quote]

Thanks for the suggestion; I thinks it’s worth looking at.

Scorekeeper,
I agree with Paul; the time to look at kids pitching is during practice. Would be great to develop additional pitchers as our league teams are woofully short on pitching. On the other hand; putting kids in positions (including other than pitching) which they lack the skills to play can not only be detrimental to development but dangerous to kids when they are not capable of playing said position. I believe every kid deserves a shot but if they’re not capable on the practice field not going to be capable on game day.

[quote=“Mike4”][quote=“Turn 22”]
…I agree with Paul; the time to look at kids pitching is during practice. Would be great to develop additional pitchers as our league teams are woofully short on pitching. On the other hand; putting kids in positions (including other than pitching) which they lack the skills to play can not only be detrimental to development but dangerous to kids when they are not capable of playing said position. I believe every kid deserves a shot but if they’re not capable on the practice field not going to be capable on game day.[/quote]

Its not that I disagree, but that I’ve see what happens in many cases, and it very often leads directly to only those “capable” at the moment ever getting an opportunity.

So how is it your league, like most, are so woefully pitching poor? If you have 8 teams, in a rec league that’s usually at least 96 players. Generally only 2 games a week are played, so you only need enough pitcher to cover 12 innings. Even if only half the kids can do it, that’s only 2 innings per player, and I find it very difficult to believe there aren’t 4 kids on every team who could pitch 2 innings a week without the world coming to an end. It would be different if we were talking about All Stars or Travel ball teams, but even then there’d be more player capable of doing the job.

But the problem isn’t covering 2 or 3 6 inning games a week with 12 players. It trying to cover 4 or 5 games on a 3 day weekend for a tournament. That’s where the problems get out of hand. People forget that ML teams usually have 12 pitchers on the roster, plus they yank players out of their “system” at a moment’s notice. That’s how they deal with 6 or 7 9 inning games a week, or between 50 and 65 innings. So how does a coach with at best 14 players figger he’s in fat city with only 5 experienced pitchers at most going into a tournament, even if the games are only 6 innings long? That half the innings with less than half the pitchers, and usually those pitchers are only half as mature. It makes for a bad situation.

And finally, if you go back and read what I wrote, you’ll notice I didn’t distinguish between games or practice, and I did that purposely. Why should pitcher “A” get to pitch in a game, then throw a pen and another game before other kids even get to throw a pen?

A team of 12-13 kids in a youth league probably only has 4-5 kids with decent arms. Not all decent arms can pitch. If you’re lucky you have 3 kids who can chew up meaningful innings. The rest of them are only used when the games get lop-sided. There is very limited pen time during practice because players need defensive and offensive practice for positions they’ll be playing. The pen time goes mostly to those top 3 to maintain their conditioning and their rhythm.

Our team is “pitcher poor” this year because league decided to have only 10 kids per team to have more teams. As a result all teams lack enough pitching or catching (or both) no to mention lack of infielders. And yes; this is a problem in a 13-14 year old age group. As to SK’s comment about more difficult to get through a weekend tournamnet than two games per week in league; that has not been our experience. My son also plays travel (no pitching until league is finished); travel team has 6 primary pitchers & every kid on team is capable & most have been called on in a crunch. Since players “try out” & are selected dont have any true weak links. To answer the question of what it would hurt to let some of the kids with lesser abilities pitch one or two innings per week? Besides the fact many lack the ability to throw strikes to even get a chance to get through an inning; many lack the skills & athletic ability to safely deal with a line drive hit directly back at them. Same thing with certain infield positions, first base is a good example. I was talking to a friend a few years ago who lives in another town I don’t talk to frequently. Knowing his son (who is a couple of years older than my own) played baseball & it was during the season I asked him how baseball was going for his son. His reply was his son no longer played; didn’t enjoy due to afraid of the ball. Went on to explain he didn’t catch very well and had been hit in the face & injured while playing first base. Apparantly he caught ball with glove facing upward & ball popped out of glove and back into his face. I made the comment that sometimes coaches do the kids a disservice by playing kids in positions they are not suited to play (at their stage of development). He agreed and let me know he was also the coach. My point being not all kids are suited or ready to play all positions including pitching.