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Old 05-12-2016   #1
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Default General Questions regarding pitchers

I have been beating my head for two season on this subject and have to pose a question to other coaches out there.

I have had a difficult time recruiting pitchers for both 14b and 16b levels of competition.

It seems most pitchers simply guest play each weekend and will not commit to a team OR am I just that unlucky the past two seasons? Are other teams experiencing this same difficulty?
Bryan Schiefen
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Old 05-12-2016   #2
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Part of it is age. When they get into high school if they are "B" level pitchers odds are either a) they don't get a lot of circle time, and thus give up pitching to focus on the positions that will get them to varsity, or b) their high school coaches encourage them to move to A ball even if it means being a #3.
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Old 05-12-2016   #3
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I have noticed every weekend at 14b there is 5 or 6 teams looking for pitchers to guest play. To many teams not enough pitchers.
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Old 05-12-2016   #4
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"Too many teams not enough pitchers" may increase unfortunately in my humble opinion. With the big tournaments now touting 7-8 game guarantees the teams are almost required to have a pitching "staff". Thankfully in the softball world, even into the college level, teams are starting to have a little guilt about riding an "ace" (and a 2nd pitcher sometimes) into the ground over the course of an 8 game weekend (possibly more if there's a losers bracket). Think about that, asking 2 girls to pitch 7-10 games in 2 days. The comment about being a number 3 on an A team instead of a 1 on a B is valid but that is changing. A #3 on an A team playing in 7-8 game guarantee tournaments is gonna get circle time.

The number of game guarantee seems to justify the cost of the tourney to the organizers, for me personally I'd like to have a game or two less, better amenities/services/umps and pitchers at full strength at the end of bracket instead of sucking gas because they are pitching their 5th game in 2 days.

In a nutshell, I don't see the pitcher shortage problem getting any better at the lower levels with the number of games being played these days (negative) and the fact that we've wisened up and stopped throwing girls 500 pitches a weekend (positive).
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Old 05-13-2016   #5
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Default Pitching

Good points made. I would also prefer a couple less games.

I am blessed to have plenty of pitching at the 14B level.
I however..under no circumstances will over pitch my girls for any reason. 2 games in one day max.
Ive seen on 2 occasions this year where a team played 6 plus games and 1 girl pitched every inning of every game...imo thats just stupid coaching and parenting for allowing it to happen.
Ive heard it said a thousand times " softball pitchers are different"....i agree 100% but if you think a 13 14 15 yr old kid throwing 6 games a weekend 3 weekends a month wont take its toll on your player/daughters are sadly mistaken and your player/daughter will eventually get injured.
I know ill get blasted for this but wont be the first many coaches simply care about a $10 plastic trophy more than care about the well being of their players. If you have to wear a kid out to win because she is your "Ace"...then ill make a suggestion...try developing your other girls so you dont have to ride one girl into the ground.
Ok....enough on that....back to topic. Def a shortage of pitchers but i think if we stop looking for that Ace and give the girls a chance who are maybe that #3 to a lot of coaches they will surprise you.
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Old 05-13-2016   #6
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A lot of good advice here.

In regards to picking up a guest pitcher this weekend which I noticed you had a challenge-its graduation weekend which is very difficult to find players let alone pitchers. You have your 8th graders graduating in addition to families and players going to graduations for themselves and family/friends.

Pitching has been difficult forever. I learned long ago the easiest way is to be able to teach pitchers yourself. From beginners to advanced. Most of my pitchers are taught by my daughter and before that by myself.
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Old 05-15-2016   #7
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I think that as other club sports such as volleyball and soccer demand more and more time, it becomes difficult. Pitching takes a lot of time. It's tough to develop into a good pitcher when you have two or three other sports (plus band, choir, etc.) demanding time as well. There's only so much time and being a pitcher requires a large chunk of it. So kids are either not putting in the necessary work or abandoning it all together.
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Old 02-05-2017   #8
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Pitchers are hard to come by. Period.
Pitchers that are seasoned, who work with a GOOD pitching coach, and the kid work HARD between pitching lessons is even harder to come by. My daughter has guest played quite a bit in the last couple of seasons for one reason or another. For example current team not playing enough, or not getting enough circle time. Whatever the case may be, the kids who guest play may not necissarily be looking for a permanent team, but the only way to get better is to play and use what you work hard at.
What we have noticed is, there are lots of coaches out there that do not KNOW anything about pitching. For one it takes a bit to learn the pitchers strengths, if they are rythem pitcher or whatever the case is. And it usually does not matter what the parents try to tell you about their kid because most parents see things bigger than they are, you will see everything you need to know after a few innings or a full game. If coaches or teams are using a guest pitcher and possibly hoping that it could turn into a full time thing for the team, all situations have to be right. Whomever is calling pitches needs to know whats going on and not just call a pitch just to be calling a pitch. And hopefully there is a good defense behind any pitcher. Then it might not be hard to pick up good pitchers that are guest playing.
Most cases the kid is just looking for more circle time to master their craft, not looking for a new team.
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Old 02-08-2017   #9
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I think there are a lot of reason why pitchers are hard to come by or hard to commit for a number of reasons. We live about 2 hours from KC in our area we are very limited on good travel teams and the level of ball around us is not as good as KC area so I will have my daughter pick up on a KC team on off weekends when I want to get her more circle time. I looked into getting her on a KC team but week night practices with school the next day is hard and didn't find a team willing to take her without traveling for the weeknight practices. She actually filled in for a KC team every tournament this Fall becane like family to them the girls cried when it was her last tournament to play with them but the coaches wouldn't take her if she can't make the week night practices. But I could find her a tournament every weekend if I wanted to as there is always someone needing a pitcher. I know many girls in other playing positions that do that same thing from our area just to get more games when our teams are not playing.

I agree with the other post if teams are doing 6 or more game guarantees they have to have 3 solid pitchers. My daughter filled in for one this Fall with only 1 pitcher making her the 2nd pitcher and both shoulders where shot by game 7 in two days. If we had gone to championship game we would not have had anything left for it. Got knocked out right before coming up through the losers bracket.
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14b, 16b, ball, coaches, general, gues, guest, guest play, high, high school, long, lot, pitcher, pitchers, pitching, recruiting, school, softball, team, teams, teams looking, throwing, varsity, weekend

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