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10u pitch count?

May 29, 2015
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I firmly believe in pitch counts ... but I don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all number.

The strain on a college pitcher is much more than the girl standing at the local park taking a step and lobbing one in. The stamina and focus needed to play 6 rounds of games (at 3-4 innings per game) in a tournament in one day is not the same as a scholastic contest which is only one game (but may be 7 innings in one game).

The key is knowing your daughter or your pitchers and understanding what their capabilities are. Build your base line and work from there. Work with your pitching coach to help find that individual benchmark.
 
May 18, 2019
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My DD just did 230 in one day about two weeks ago. She was truly in a zone, getting better every inning. Finished the last game stronger than she started. May not ever dominate the way she did that day.
I'm hoping your daughter is not 10U. If she is, I would encourage you to think about the risks of throwing that many pitches in a day. I have watched 2 separate girls end their pitching careers at 10u and 12u this year from overdoing it. It's just not worth it at that age. I also think throwing that many limits the development of other pitchers on the team. Offered for your consideration with humility and acknowledgement that I don't know the specifics of your daughter or the situation.
 
Oct 4, 2018
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I'm hoping your daughter is not 10U. If she is, I would encourage you to think about the risks of throwing that many pitches in a day. I have watched 2 separate girls end their pitching careers at 10u and 12u this year from overdoing it. It's just not worth it at that age. I also think throwing that many limits the development of other pitchers on the team. Offered for your consideration with humility and acknowledgement that I don't know the specifics of your daughter or the situation.
I agree. It was a test, not the norm. I wanted to push it a tad over her average and the situation was perfect to do so. It was one early game and then 5-6 hours off. Then a triple header, each game just 3 or 4 innings. So very little warm-up, cool-down, repeat. Just went quickly from one game to the next. Perfect weather.

We were watching her closely and know what to look for. My daughter even said "I want other girls to get to pitch" but all coaches, parents and girls wanted to leave her in. As I said here or elsewhere, the planets were aligned and she was unhittable.

Coach was very careful, consulted with DD and me individually, collectively and would have removed her no questions asked if either of us requested. And I did say "let's not do that again" afterwards. Two weeks later she was back down to her normal 150 or so. One more tournament and she takes 2 months (at least) with zero pitching.
 
Mar 20, 2015
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There is a write up on the Tincher blog today about a pitcher who tore the labrum in her hip and could not play college ball. I think most of these injuries are not a specific tournament but a gradual adding up over time where there is no indication that damage is being done until there is a problem down the road.
 
Oct 4, 2018
1,317
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There is a write up on the Tincher blog today about a pitcher who tore the labrum in her hip and could not play college ball. I think most of these injuries are not a specific tournament but a gradual adding up over time where there is no indication that damage is being done until there is a problem down the road.
Agreed.

That's part of the reason so many (myself included) believe in long (6-8 week) breaks from the game at least once per year.


If you want to be a good pitcher, you have to pitch. Duh, right?

And if you want to pitch well and improve, you need to increase your stamina. It's a fine line to walk for sure. I read that article too. Girl pitched every single weekend. Not sure why anyone thought that was ok.
 
Mar 20, 2015
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I have found the more they pitch (with good form) the faster and more accurate they get. So a line has to be walked to how far can you push them and still prevent injury.

I have struggled with my own DD on pulling the plug in the past. On occasion I have let her pitch more than I would have liked. In a few instances I asked the coaches to remove her and they were always ok with it. However I do think it creates tension. But at the end of the day her health is what matters most. In my experience it helps to communicate a pitch limit up front they can plan around that also factors in warmups if there are multiple games. We use 120-130 pitches max. Her current team has a lot of pitchers so its a non factor.
 
Last edited:
Feb 7, 2013
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One thing to remember, it's not just the number of pitches during innings its also a) pregame warm-up pitches (40-60+?); and pitches between innings (4).

For example, if you are playing a timed game tournament with games typically going 5 innings. 5 inning x 20 pitches + 50 pregame + 20 (5 innings x 4 average) between inning pitches = 170 pitches per game. Repeat for a second game (170) that day and your reaching 340. This is the maximum that I would pitch in any single day for 8U to 12U. Communication and observation of you pitcher is key. One thing we did successfully during tournaments was one pitcher would pitch the first 3 innings and then we bring in a second pitcher to finish the game. It keeps your pitchers fresh and gives the other team's offense a different look.

With that said, if you DD is regularly pitching, pretty much year-round most kids can pitch two games in a single day.

IMO, the bigger issues are pitchers who are using faulty pitching techniques and not doing proper warm-ups; they tend to be the ones that get hurt pitching (e.g. elbow/shoulder problems, back stress fractures, etc).
 
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