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Christian McCarthy, the Athletic Director at John Jay High School and the co-chairman for high school baseball in Section 1, spoke at a panel discussion organized by The Journal News and USA Today about pitch count regulations that are being implemented across the country for high school baseball.
The pitch panel discussion took place on March 28, 2017 at New Rochelle High School and was watched live on Facebook by over 13,000 parents, coaches, and student-athletes.
Pitch count regulations are being implemented across the country for high school baseball. Each state was required by the National Federation of High School Associations to draft its own rules for the 2017 season. McCarthy was directly involved in the recent process to develop pitch count regulations for New York State.
“I’ve seen a lot of pitching injuries over the years,” said McCarthy. “The old rule was that students could pitch a certain number of innings a week. That was not protective. The new rule states the maximum number of pitches that varsity, junior varsity and modified student-athlete can throw, as well as the required days of rest.”
“This panel discussed the strain on pitchers’ arms, injury prevention and the application of these rules in New York State,” said Vincent Mercogliano, sports reporter for The Journal News who moderated the discussion.
“My goal as the moderator was to put five experts in the room and help parents, students, and coaches understand the new rules,” said Mercogliano.
Christian McCarthy spoke as part of the team that developed the new regulation for New York State. The other panelists were:
Rick Peterson, a Major League Baseball pitching coach who is well-known for combining saber metrics, bio-mechanics and predictive analysis to keep pitchers healthy and reduce injury
Dr. Stephen Nicholas, an authority in the field of sports medicine and one of the leading orthopedic surgeons for pitching injuries in the country who has served as the team physician for the New York Jets, New York Islanders and the athletes at Hofstra University
Brian Aviles, a former pitcher with the Atlanta Braves and a pitching coach, whose son Robbie was considered a first-round prospect for the 2010 MLB Draft before tearing his UCL
Darren Gurney, the director of Rising Star Baseball Camp who has produced a series of videos with Miami Marlins pitcher Tom Koehler which focus on pitching mechanics.
“We are in first step mode,” said McCarthy. “The initial regulation is out. We will make modifications to make it more effective. A lot of different things can be done to improve regulation to protect students’ arms. Expect that the rule will continue to evolve to make it more effective.”
(in photo: John Jay's Brendan Carberry)