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Tournament Pitching Management

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  • 3and2Fastball
    replied
    Interested in more thoughts on pitching strategies for 11/12U Tournaments

    Leave a comment:


  • Roothog66
    replied
    Pitching managment strategy can change tournament to tournament. There are so many factors. The first is to evaluate your pool games. I have three studs who I consider bracket pitchers. They are going to throw no more than 25 pitches in pool play. If I have two games in pool and one is a team I consider much better than mine, I'm pitching all three in the game against the weaker team and guarantee myself a win - especially in a bracket that has play-in games for lower seeds. I don't want to blow quality pitching against a good team, lose, and then get tripped up by a weaker team. I'll take 1-1 anyday coming out of pool. Now, you'll find that the REAL GOOD teams can pitch their 7, 8, and 9 guys in pool with very little drop off, but most of us don't have that advantage.

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  • real green
    replied
    Originally posted by raptor View Post
    Agreed..taking no weekends off..playing for multiple teams.."guest playing" and the like sway the balance too much to the game side vs practice time.
    Hit those kids plenty of easy gorund balls outside and work in the cages on the soft grass on teaching skills like diving..throwing from a knee..different arm angles etc.
    To the original poster..I cant stress enough..good defense saves your pitching staff at youth TB tournaments. When a young pitcher hears his teammates telling him to pipe it..they've got this..it gives him confidence!
    If it's taking 5 plus outs to to get out of an inning you will tear through your arms quick. Outs are far more valuable than giving up a run most of the time.

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  • HeinekenMan
    replied
    Originally posted by raptor View Post
    Agreed..taking no weekends off..playing for multiple teams.."guest playing" and the like sway the balance too much to the game side vs practice time.
    Hit those kids plenty of easy gorund balls outside and work in the cages on the soft grass on teaching skills like diving..throwing from a knee..different arm angles etc.
    To the original poster..I cant stress enough..good defense saves your pitching staff at youth TB tournaments. When a young pitcher hears his teammates telling him to pipe it..they've got this..it gives him confidence!
    My defense seems to be good. But I won't know for sure until we start playing games.

    Leave a comment:


  • raptor
    replied
    Originally posted by CircleChange11 View Post
    That sounds very reasonable.

    Our defense was not good and that was a significant factor in regards to pitch counts.

    I don;t think kids should be required to play in multiple leagues at the same time, because it does't leave practice time ... only game time.

    I think at these ages, kids need daily practice (probably not realistic), and y daily practice I simply mean each kid needs 15 minutes of hitting and groundballs (not necessarily as a team).
    Agreed..taking no weekends off..playing for multiple teams.."guest playing" and the like sway the balance too much to the game side vs practice time.
    Hit those kids plenty of easy gorund balls outside and work in the cages on the soft grass on teaching skills like diving..throwing from a knee..different arm angles etc.
    To the original poster..I cant stress enough..good defense saves your pitching staff at youth TB tournaments. When a young pitcher hears his teammates telling him to pipe it..they've got this..it gives him confidence!

    Leave a comment:


  • CircleChange11
    replied
    Originally posted by raptor View Post
    We averaged 18.2 pitches per innings last year at 10u. We didn't need three innings from starters but often got it due to low pitch counts. Our collective strike % was only 58 so I think that speaks for focusing on defense and making few errors. About half our games went five innings..maybe a quarter went six...at an hour and a half timed...sometimes we would only get three. 256 innings over 58 games...so about 4.5 innings per game...about 80 pitches per game for us.
    That sounds very reasonable.

    Our defense was not good and that was a significant factor in regards to pitch counts.

    I don;t think kids should be required to play in multiple leagues at the same time, because it does't leave practice time ... only game time.

    I think at these ages, kids need daily practice (probably not realistic), and y daily practice I simply mean each kid needs 15 minutes of hitting and groundballs (not necessarily as a team).

    Leave a comment:


  • raptor
    replied
    Originally posted by CircleChange11 View Post
    1. Assume 20-25 pitches per inning. Over 40 TB and LLAS games, that's what our pitchers and opposing pitchers averaged.
    2. So for 4 games of 6 INN, that's anywhere between 480 and 600 pitches.

    Divided by 8 pitchers and it's an average of 60 to 75 pitches per pitcher for the weekend.

    You're looking to get 3 IP out of each pitcher.

    So, what I would do is assign 2 pitchers to each game. Then have an emergency pitcher for each game.

    Knowing that most games don;t go according to plan doesn't mean there shouldn't be a plan.

    Honestly, if one is primarily concerned with pitcher safety ... don't sign up for tournaments. That's the lesson I learned this year and won't be doing again next year.

    By 12U, everyone on the team (except for catchers) should be available to pitch and handle a decent workload and be facing enough batters that can make contact to keep pitches per inning below a ridiculous number.

    We averaged 18.2 pitches per innings last year at 10u. We didn't need three innings from starters but often got it due to low pitch counts. Our collective strike % was only 58 so I think that speaks for focusing on defense and making few errors. About half our games went five innings..maybe a quarter went six...at an hour and a half timed...sometimes we would only get three. 256 innings over 58 games...so about 4.5 innings per game...about 80 pitches per game for us.

    Leave a comment:


  • CircleChange11
    replied
    1. Assume 20-25 pitches per inning. Over 40 TB and LLAS games, that's what our pitchers and opposing pitchers averaged.
    2. So for 4 games of 6 INN, that's anywhere between 480 and 600 pitches.

    Divided by 8 pitchers and it's an average of 60 to 75 pitches per pitcher for the weekend.

    You're looking to get 3 IP out of each pitcher.

    So, what I would do is assign 2 pitchers to each game. Then have an emergency pitcher for each game.

    Knowing that most games don;t go according to plan doesn't mean there shouldn't be a plan.

    Honestly, if one is primarily concerned with pitcher safety ... don't sign up for tournaments. That's the lesson I learned this year and won't be doing again next year.

    By 12U, everyone on the team (except for catchers) should be available to pitch and handle a decent workload and be facing enough batters that can make contact to keep pitches per inning below a ridiculous number.

    Leave a comment:


  • skipper5
    replied
    [QUOTE=tg643;2050785]
    Originally posted by raptor View Post



    Another value to a lot of pickup games versus organized games is kids will figure out a lot of the game on their own if left alone in pickup games long enough.
    Amen......

    Leave a comment:


  • raptor
    replied
    I have 30" wood bat I used for two years in LL at 11-12..its 27 oz... Its always in the "bucket in the garage". Parents had it monogrammed etc and the alcoa bats were not that prevalent yet..and I used it because some older kids said they preferred the feel of wood so I copied them. Kid takes it from time to time...handle is so thick..he always is amazed that I used that club at his age. Anyone remember the Easton Black Magics? The first great aluminum.

    Leave a comment:


  • tg643
    replied
    [QUOTE=raptor;2050757]
    Originally posted by tg643 View Post

    Some kids do get hurt..agreed..but it may just likely be from football or soccer or basketball....which this board encourages them to play as a second sport...well maybe not soccer lol.
    But as long as you limit mound time and protect kids' arms..there really is not a huge difference between playing four baseball games and playing pickup all day..in fact there would be more throws and at bats in pickup..physically...now it might be higher stress emotionally but that's a different question.
    In sixth grade football kids will throw up from running...
    The big differenec between a lot of pickup ball and a lot of organized ball is, if a kid playing pickup ball doesn't feel right he'll bag it for the day. In organized ball the kid will say nothing, suck it up and make the sitation worse. I wish kids played 20 league games and 50 pickup games over the summer rather than 60-75 (if not more) organized games.

    Another value to a lot of pickup games versus organized games is kids will figure out a lot of the game on their own if left alone in pickup games long enough. I laugh at "using two different size bats" and "playing whiffle ball" will screw up your swing. Kids aren't that tender. We used whatever bat was available. I remember playing pickup games where the available bat was way too heavy. But I choked up and adapted to the situation. Today, kids dopn't know how to adapt. The fastest way to my bad side as a coach was anyone complaining the pitcher was too slow. Stop whining and adjust or I'll play someone who isn't whining. Too slow is not an excuse. Too fast can be challenging.
    Last edited by tg643; 08-14-2012, 05:02 PM.

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  • raptor
    replied
    [QUOTE=tg643;2050664]
    Originally posted by raptor View Post

    There's a huge difference between playing organized sports and pickup ball. In pickup sports kids pack it in when they are tired or hurt. In organized sports they suck it up to please the adults. Looking back my son played too many organized sports games as a kid. When he had shoulder surgery for a seperated shoulder in the fall of his senior year, the surgeon said the wear and tear on his shoulder was probably the cause for the seperation (in addition to the fall). The wear and tear was not from pitching. it was from all the organized soccer, football, basketball and baseball he played as a kid. I played a lot of pickup sports as a kid in addition to playing three organized sports. But we packed it in for the day when we had enough. Our organized sports did not have excessive schedules. What looks like a bunch of fun you may come to realize after the fact there's more involved.


    Add: As my kids were growing up they had physicals by a sports orthopedic specialist every year. The ortho was (recently retired) one of the top in the region. He said if my son was playing one sport it would be too much. But since it was spread over four sports with different movements he should be ok. He was wrong. What he didn't consider is my son was always the one with the scrapes, floor burns and the dirty uniform at the end of the game. He was always going 100 mph to win.
    Some kids do get hurt..agreed..but it may just likely be from football or soccer or basketball....which this board encourages them to play as a second sport...well maybe not soccer lol.
    But as long as you limit mound time and protect kids' arms..there really is not a huge difference between playing four baseball games and playing pickup all day..in fact there would be more throws and at bats in pickup..physically...now it might be higher stress emotionally but that's a different question.
    In sixth grade football kids will throw up from running...

    Leave a comment:


  • d-mac
    replied
    Originally posted by raptor View Post
    What age group..there are only a handful of double elim tourneys for usssa each year and they don't break into divisions..even the forty team major super nits are single elim. The elites and all state games are double..I know there is one in Mckinney tx which is double in October..but it doesn't count for anything.
    10u. These weren't double elims. They would run it like the USSSA Global WS. If you had 32 teams in qualifying. Sunday would be 4 brackets of 8 teams. Top 8 in one bracket for the title. Next 8 in bracket 2 for 9th place or Gold Champs, next 8 in bracket 3 for 17th place or Silver Champs.

    We played one Super NIT with 24 teams where you played 4 pool play games and only top 8 advanced. We played another with 17 teams where everyone advanced. That is the only tournament that would have required 4 games in one day.

    Leave a comment:


  • HeinekenMan
    replied
    At the same venue we'll be at in three weeks, they had a tournament last weekend. On Sunday, most teams played three games. One team played four. That team played at 10 a.m., 2 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. Three 1.5 hour games is 4.5 hours of ball. That's not bad. I played a Litte League game this spring that went three hours because the other coach only cared about winning and made all of our kids keep trotting out to their positions in 95-degree midday heat. But four 1.5-hour games is too much. That's six hours of baseball. And that's just game time. Throw in four 15-minute warmups and you're talking about seven hours in uniform. I'm definitely going to make sure I have 12-13 tournament players.

    Leave a comment:


  • tg643
    replied
    [QUOTE=raptor;2050596]
    Originally posted by tg643 View Post
    I'm very against preteen tournaments where teams play more than two games in a day. I wasn't a big fan of it in 13-16U USSSA ball. When my son started playing showcase ball they never played more than two in a day. If two is enough for college prospects, college and pro players why is it good for little kids to play three or four in a day?

    If they are having a blast competing and you can take care of their health then who cares? I played AAU basketball growing up and no one complained about kids playing three games in a day. Or the times when you played pickup and got on the court and never lost. No parent was telling me to save my knees. Its good for kids to play games because they enjoy them..and get better by playing them. Dads who don't have the luxury of going to the field every day and working independently with a willing child..should still be able to get their kids playing games a lot if the kids want to play a lot. That doesn't mean you wear out their arms..but for kids playing a few games in a day..if they want to be there..isn't that big of an issue.
    Softball..soccer..volleyball...lacrosse..field hockey..tennis..basketball...all youth sports where tournaments will play more than one game a day.
    There's a huge difference between playing organized sports and pickup ball. In pickup sports kids pack it in when they are tired or hurt. In organized sports they suck it up to please the adults. Looking back my son played too many organized sports games as a kid. When he had shoulder surgery for a seperated shoulder in the fall of his senior year, the surgeon said the wear and tear on his shoulder was probably the cause for the seperation (in addition to the fall). The wear and tear was not from pitching. it was from all the organized soccer, football, basketball and baseball he played as a kid. I played a lot of pickup sports as a kid in addition to playing three organized sports. But we packed it in for the day when we had enough. Our organized sports did not have excessive schedules. What looks like a bunch of fun you may come to realize after the fact there's more involved.

    Add: As my kids were growing up they had physicals by a sports orthopedic specialist every year. The ortho was (recently retired) one of the top in the region. He said if my son was playing one sport it would be too much. But since it was spread over four sports with different movements he should be ok. He was wrong. What he didn't consider is my son was always the one with the scrapes, floor burns and the dirty uniform at the end of the game. He was always going 100 mph to win.
    Last edited by tg643; 08-14-2012, 12:48 PM.

    Leave a comment:

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