IHSA to Hold Meetings on Pitch Count Limits

Pitch count guidelines for high school athletes aimed at curbing injuries are scheduled to be voted on at the Illinois High School Association’s Dec. 12 Board of Directors meeting. (Pixabay)Pitch count guidelines for high school athletes aimed at curbing injuries are scheduled to be voted on at the Illinois High School Association’s Dec. 12 Board of Directors meeting. (Pixabay)

The Illinois High School Association wants to hear from school principals and athletic directors before voting on proposed pitch count guidelines.

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At its meeting Wednesday, the IHSA Board of Directors postponed a vote on the measure. The guidelines will be discussed throughout the month of November at annual IHSA rules meetings with principals. Meetings will be held at various high schools throughout the state.

The proposed guidelines set limits on the number of pitches a player could throw per game, and outline rest schedules and weekly pitching caps based on the number of pitches thrown in an effort to curb throwing-related injuries.

Dr. Preston Wolin, an orthopedic surgeon and director of sports medicine at Weiss Memorial Hospital, helped craft the proposed guidelines and said he’s been advocating for them for years.

“There’s a whole set of injuries that can happen in a younger age group for boys during their growth period, starting in Little League and all the way up to their freshman year in high school,” he said in September.

“Over the last 10 years we’ve seen an explosion in the number of young athletes who were having injuries to their upper extremities in baseball—largely shoulder and elbow injuries,” he added. “We used to see these types of injuries in older players. There’s no distinction now.”

Pitch count limitations are slated to be voted on Monday, Dec. 12. If approved, they would be effective for the 2017 IHSA baseball season.

Follow Kristen Thometz on Twitter: @kristenthometz


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