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WBC adopts pitch counts and mercy rule
2006-01-26 16:51
by Bob Timmermann

65 pitches will be the maximum for pitchers in the first round of the World Baseball Classic, according to rules adopted today.

The limit goes up to 80 pitches for the second round and 95 pitches for the semifinals and final.

There will also be a mercy rule in place. If a team is ahead by 15 after 5 or by 10 after 7, the game is over. Look for this rule to come into play when South Africa and China take the field.

In addition, everyone on the roster has to get into one game and each team has to designate six players to bring snacks to eat after the game. Each team is guaranteed a party at a Pizza Hut of their choosing when they are eliminated from the tournament.

2006-01-26 17:12:15
1.   Mark
Bah. What crap. I understand the need to not strain pitchers arms, but imposing an arbitrary limit on pitch counts penalizes the workhorses of the group. And let's not even get into the mercy rule. I feel myself drawn back to the tied All-Star game... makes the whole thing feel like just a stupid spectacle, rather than an actual competition.
2006-01-26 17:37:05
2.   Xeifrank
Well, it's obviously pandering to MLB and I can see why owners wouldn't want their players, especially pitchers to participate in this exhibition. Setting limits at exact pitch counts is a little bit wierd, I would atleast let the pitcher finish the inning in which he reached the pitch count. I could then see teams, purposely taking more pitches just to get a certain pitcher out of the game, especially against the countries that may only have a couple of good pitchers. If they are going to do this, why not add the following rules.

1. All counts start with 1 ball and 1 strike.
2. If one team hits a homerun they cannot hit another homerun until the other team hits one or else it's an out. When both teams have homered the same amount of times you start over.
3. Each team is allowed a rover, but he must play behind a white line drawn in the shallow part of the outfield.
4. Pitch height of 10 feet for all pitches.
5. Home team brings the game ball.

it works well in my softball league anyways.
vr, Xei

2006-01-26 18:40:07
3.   Formerly R
And if you return a foul ball to the snack bar you get free licorice rope.
2006-01-27 13:49:02
4.   Jacob L
So I guess the games where invoking the mercy rule is likely will have cheaper tickets, huh? Huh?
2006-01-27 15:04:28
5.   misterjohnny
Is there a keg at second base?

When is the beer inning?

2006-01-28 16:00:29
6.   das411
Why was there no mercy rule in place on August 5th 2001?!?!?!?

(can't figure out a retrosheet permalink, sorry, maybe Bob will help me out)

2006-01-28 16:51:33
7.   Bob Timmermann
Mercy rules are standard in international play.

Do you really want to sit through 9 innings of U.S. vs. South Africa?

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.