Sunday, October 22nd, 2017

The bases loaded walk

August 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Coaching, Pitching

You are pitching.  It’s early in the game or ahead by a few runs late in the game. You have the bases loaded and the other team’s best hitter at the plate.  You are behind in the count.  What do you do?

The bases loaded walk isn't always as bad as you might think.

The bases loaded walk isn’t always as bad as you might think.

 

I say pitch around him.

Young pitchers grow up hearing the importance of throwing strikes and pitching to contact.  In his young mind, one of the worst things a pitcher can do is walk someone with the bases loaded.  But is that really so bad?  

I don’t think so.

Walking a good hitter with the bases loaded scores a grand total of ONE run.  Big whoop.  It’s a heck of a lot better than a double off the wall that clears the bases.

I wrote a post called Don’t let the best hitter beat you and this bases loaded walk falls into this strategy.  Over time, if you take the bat out of the hands of the other teams’ best hitters, you will win more games.  Surely it will backfire once in a while but the odds are in your favor.

If you are a pitcher or a coach of one, throwing of strikes (or preaching it) is a great general strategy.  However, truly great pitchers know that throwing some balls every now and again ain’t so bad either.

Tomorrow’s post:  Sprinkler Syndrome

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