UIL adopting new rules for softball
By Jason McDaniel
Dobie pitcher Shannon O'Connor will have to throw the ball a little farther next season, and Dobie coach Robin Rackley isn't sure that's a good thing.
The UIL is adopting a new National Federation of State High School Associations rule for the 2010-2011 school year that increases the distance from the pitching circle to home plate from 40 feet to 43 feet.
And while that brings Texas high schools in line with what other states and leagues already are doing, it also adds stress for developing pitchers.
The colleges have done it, and summer ball, A' ball, Gold, so most of these girls who have played competitive ball in the summer are used to it," Dobie coach Robin Rackley said. As far as that it's a good thing.
The bad thing about 43 feet, to me, is it's not good for pitchers' arms. But it's something that they're going to have to get used to, so I guess that's why the high schools are doing it. It just puts a lot more pressure on the pitchers' elbows and shoulders."
The rule is, in part, a way to increase scoring by taking away some of the dominance from the game's most dominant pitchers, who usually ending up leading their teams deep into the playoffs.
Rackley says the change is more about preparing players for the next level, but admits it's almost certain to boost overall offense, especially against teams that don't have a high-level arm in the circle.
It's probably more to match what they're doing in college," Rackley said. But moving it back to 43 feet without a doubt makes it more of an offensive game because, No. 1, that's three more feet the kids have to see the ball, and with today's bats and the kids' talent now-a-days, that's a lot.
In high school you're going to see a lot more home runs, you're going to see a lot more runs on the board with them moving it back to 43 feet, especially with the kids who aren't the experienced pitchers who play summer ball."
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