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Using Numbers instead of Signs?

The San Francisco Chronicle has a good article about a growing trend in College and High School baseball. Everyone that has seen a few different college teams have seen how some college teams communicate with calling pitches with a number system and teams have now tried to bring that over to the offensive side of the game.

I personally think this is a fine idea as it is easier for the players to recognize the numbering system but it does slow the game down. What do you think?

You can check out the full article by clicking here.

  • Our system in high school was number based, but sign oriented. Every touch to the left arm was 10. The “10” series were bunts, “20” series were steals, “30” series were hit and runs. For specific varieties, each touch to the top two corners of the chest was a 1, bottom two corners of the stomach were 2. You’d add the touches to figure out what the call was. 11 was sac bunt, 12 drag bunt, 13 fake bunt, etc. It was pretty complicated for the players who weren’t all that mentally capable. The signs also had indicators and closers, so the sign would be started with a particular sign and closed with another. It didn’t seem to take too long at the time, but now that I’m an umpire at the high school level, signs take up way too much time as it is. There’s quite a few schools who I’ve threatened with delay of game strikes.

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