Travel Tournament Pitch Limits Feb 22, 2010 23:16:55 GMT -6
Post by Doug Shortridge on Feb 22, 2010 23:16:55 GMT -6
I've got a 12 year old son who is a top pitcher. He really enjoys the high skills and high competition found in the travel ball scene. I like a lot about this venue as well. It's so fun to see your boy pitching really well! The trouble is there is overlooked, or simply ignored, danger to travel ball top pitchers. Why? Because on some level it seems everyone (including proud sideline parents like me before I realized the risk) wants to use these kids to the max because it helps win games. Obviously. And yet the rules of the tournament organizations in some cases are dangerously high if one simply multiplies the allowed innings by 15 or 16 pitches per and compares this to the research-based recommendations. We got lucky and figured out the risk before a serious injury occurred. A minor "little league elbow" scare and now there is a whole new program in place on our team locally. But I imagine there have been, and will be, hundreds of other kids like my son who have been or will be injured due to overlooking, or worse, ignoring the fact that sometimes the rules are highly inconsistent with the recognized standards. I know of one tournament organization which simply has no limits at all! And yet neither do they make any clear effort I am aware of which helps educate the parents. And for those which do have pitching limits, in some cases even using a conservative 15 pitch average means that the pitch count is almost double the recommended limits. I wonder if others have comments or experiences along this line? I wonder if any other parents, coaches, doctors, or other interested people see the need to pressure the travel ball and show case rules-makers about protecting innocent "top pitcher" kids and their innocent parents who are excited by high level performance and the chance to show talent which wins games. Based on my personal experience, these could be the people whose excitement and pride in their kid blinds them to the danger. I wonder how many unlucky ones in the future won't see the danger in time because those who know or ought to know aren't saying and those who ought to make the rules safe aren't doing so?