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Fla. baseball team forfeits playoff spot over pitch count violation

May 9, 2017 / Baseball
A Florida high school baseball team has forfeited its playoff spot after violating new rules that regulate the number of pitches a player can throw in a single game.

Bayshore High School won its Class 5A District final, 6-2, but later forfeited the game — and consequently, a playoff berth — after discovering its pitcher exceeded the limit. Last summer, the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) mandated that all state associations adopt pitch limits for member schools. The Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) policy, which factors age and days of rest, capped Bayshore’s pitcher at 105 pitches. 

From the Bradenton Herald:

Players between the ages of 13 and 16 can throw a maximum of 95 pitches. Those age 17 or 18 can max out at 105 pitches, and players 19 or older can throw 120.

Bruins athletic director Chris Brady said in an email that Bayshore misinterpreted the rule, which requires pitchers to have a full seven days of rest after exceeding the pitch count limit and limited (its pitcher) to finishing only the at-bat during which he reached his pitch-count limit.

The new regulations are designed to protect the arms of pitchers. More players are undergoing Tommy John surgeries than ever before, and sports medicine experts say rising pitch counts are a main contributor.

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