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Discussion: Pitcher Safety Rule

Posted Discussion
Jan. 7, 2009
JohnBob
Men's 60
244 posts
Pitcher Safety Rule
At the last rules change meeting on 12/15/08 this rule was left unchanged with possible changes later. Personally I hope its done away with (I'm not a pitcher lol) but if we have to play with this rule how many senior player's and manger's agree with the part that the pitcher has to be in pitcher's box for the DBO to be called. This rule has been debated on this message board a lot and I don't remember reading that anyone agrees with this part of the rule What are your thoughts ?
Jan. 8, 2009
#19
Men's 60
252 posts
Terrible rule on many levels ... very few, if anyone, intentionally targets the pitcher ... it's an unnecessary game-altering rule.
Jan. 8, 2009
AlleninGa
Men's 60
113 posts
Pitcing has always been a risky position to play, but I don't agree with changing the rules. With the advancements in technology for safety equipment, light weight safety gear is available. I've witnessed pitchers wearing headgear, shin protectors and even chest protectors perform very well defensively. They can exercise the option of wearing the equipment without changing the rules. How many pitchers have been seriously injured while wearing protective gear?

My hat is off to "pitchers". Good ones are worth their weight in "Gold".
Jan. 8, 2009
F.O.G.
Men's 40
105 posts
I've kept quiet a long time about this rule. I guess I'm in one of those moods today...so here it is:

With the changes and advancements in technology today you have to consider that more players are at risk of getting hit by a 100 mph+ ball than ever before.

I've witnessed many pitcher's, 3rd basemen and 1st basemen limping off of the field after taking a shot from a hard hit ball. I personally saw a great 3rd baseman hit twice in a row, once in the mouth at the hands of strong pull hitters with Ultra II's in their hands. Several pitchers were killed nationally after being hit in the first two years of the Ultras.

Many states impose similar laws that are hated by many...seatbelts and motorcycle helmets. They are imposed because many people think that it won't happen to them.

Has anyone stopped to think what would happen if you lost concentration for just a second? It can and will happen....that's inevitable.

The rule, when administered correctly is designed to make hitters place the ball somewhere other than at the pitchers head. It is not designed to take the pitcher out of the game or kill the possibility of a double play. It is designed for the protection of the pitcher who, regardless of what anyone thinks or wants to believe is getting slower with age.

BTW-I think all pitchers should wear some kind of protective gear, i.e. mask, chest protector, shin guards.

For those of you who think that when the homeruns are outs the pitcher will be the target, we've been playing with similar rules for a long time. If a hitter can't make the adjustment...it's time to take up ping pong. When I take BP I hit my first 15-20 balls as hard and far as I can. Then I practice spray hitting....cones as targets, right & left sides. Because of that I can carry .800-.900 batting avg. in most tournaments....not bragging, just proof of alot of practice. For all of you retired guys, you have time to hit a couple of days a week. 300-500 balls a week. To many? You want to excel in the sport that you love? That's the answer.

Gentlemen, things in this world are always changing and there's always debate whether or not these changes are for the better. If you strive to work with the changes implemented here, it's my belief that you'll become a better, more rounded hitter that your teamates and opponants will respect.

Mike Williams
40+ National Director.
Jan. 8, 2009
leftie
Men's 50
41 posts
F.O.G.
Finally, someone who gets it..Good post.
Everyone says going up the middle is part of the game, so is taking out the catcher, but they've protected that position...We should at least do the same for someone who is 20 to 25 feet closer to the batter than the other infielders.
I agree that pitchers should wear some sort of protection just because of these "All stars" who have no bat control. I never go out without it..
Jan. 8, 2009
Duke
Men's 60
678 posts
Tommy,

Do not even bother answering this one again. Tired of dealing with stupidity. THERE IS NO PITCHER SAFETY RULE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jan. 8, 2009
Duke
Men's 60
678 posts
Gentlemen,

Just wear a mandatory mask, chest protector, and shin guards. That is a pitcher's safety rule!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Stop ruining the game we love, with a bunch of stupid rules for seniors.

Andy Smith,
Double Nickels,
Manager/Coach
Jan. 8, 2009
TOMAR77
Men's 55
188 posts
Duke, I agree NO COMMENT. See you at the fields.
Tommyd
Jan. 8, 2009
Mac21
Men's 65
35 posts
First of all the rule needs to be changed from the "Pitcher Safety Rule" to the "Batter Penalty Rule". How does it protect the pitcher if it doesn't come into play until AFTER the pitcher is hit??? Doesn't sound to me like it protected the pitcher.
The rule penalizes the batter for hitting the pitcher which is ok with me, but don't think it's going to protect the pitcher. I never intentionally hit at the pitcher, but I have hit pitchers in the past. Sometimes with two strikes I will swing at a pitch I normally wouldn't swing at and it goes back up the middle and has hit the pitcher. Since the rule has gone into effect I haven't adjusted my swing to avoid hitting the pitcher. (I also haven't hit a pitcher during that time, but not as a result of the rule) Realistically, how many times does a pitcher get hit during a game? I used to pitch and only got hit a few times over the years. My point is I don't think the rule protects the pitcher because I don't think the great majority of players have made any adjustments to their swing to avoid hitting the pitcher. The odds of hitting the pitcher are minimal, and it is only an out if you do so why change your swing?
As I stated above, I don't have a problem penalizing a batter for hitting a pitcher, but don't count on this rule reducing the number of times pitchers get hit. Our pitcher has been hit just as frequently as he did before this rule was instituted.
Jan. 9, 2009
Paco13
353 posts
Mac21, So far your argument is by far the best as far as why this is a futile rule. If I have to be hit by a ball in order for it to be an out...where is the protection I am already hit, heck with it. If the penalty is just an out...well if I change my swing most likely I am going to be out anyways. Let us play ball, I protect your pitcher you protect mine, that was the old gentlemen rule.
Jan. 9, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
Since when do players get rewarded for not being able to play their position properly?

I understand that Major+, those few teams in it, can be a different animal. But why do pitchers get rewarded for not being able to field a ball from a AA hitter?
Jan. 9, 2009
Jose #12
Men's 60
86 posts
MAC 21, most hitters don't have your bat conrol, but I agree that the rule doesn't really protect the pitcher. Like you, I use the middle frequently and have rarely hit a pitcher but unlike many of the the Major+ players, wouldn't be considered a threat to injure someone.

Many have stated it more eloquently, but if the pitchers wear protective gear, there shouldn't really be a problem.

Good luck this season, rule or no rule I'm sure you will continue hitting your usual .700.
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