Monday, June 01, 2009

This college coach has a lot of explaining to do

More from the overuse-injury desk.

Writing for ESPN Insider, Keith Law reports on a marathon college baseball game and the clueless decisions of the coaches involved.

"By now you've probably read about the 25-inning game yesterday between the University of Texas and Boston College, which featured incredible performances by Texas reliever Austin Wood (13 innings, 169 pitches) and BC reliever Mike Belfiore (9.2 innings, 129 pitches) to keep the game scoreless into the small hours. However, we must not overlook the unconscionable decisions by Texas coach Augie Garrido and BC coach Mikio Aoki to expose two talented young pitchers to potential arm injuries, demonstrating not only poor judgment but willful ignorance of the connection between overuse and arm injuries."

Law goes on to explain that Wood's pitch count was the second highest among college pitchers this year. And it's even worse. Wood had been used the day before, throwing 30 pitches.

I'd be very curious to hear the Texas coach defend this approach, or try to. Imagine asking a major leaguer like CC Sabathia or Zack Greinke to attempt something like this. You'd have a revolt on your hands.

A handy, definitive reference for college baseball pitch counts is Pitch Count Watch.

Thanks to Ben Hyman of Real Baseball Intelligence for the tip.

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