Return to the Articles Main Page           Post a Comment       See Comments

                                                     To DRP or Not DRP

                                                        by Jerry Driggs


     With the inclusion of the Designated Pitcher Rule for 2013, teams will need to give a little more

thought to their pitching strategy for each series.   This article is intended to give you some

strategy considerations to help you determine what is best for your team.  In the quest for more

stats to record, it was recommended we add saves and we thought it was a great idea.   Last year

we added runs scored, this year saves.

      Basically stated, the DRP may come in and relieve the current pitcher at any time.   If the game

is in the 4th or 5th inning the DRP may pitch the remainder of the game - no matter how many extra

innings the game takes.

       DRPs must be designated BEFORE each series and the other team informed of the choice.  To

have saves recorded as an official stat, the player must be designated as the DRP that series.   A team

may designate a different player as the DRP each series (not game).

       There are several key advantages to a DRP.  First, the DRP can relieve the starting pitcher.  The

COWL rule has always been the starting pitcher must pitch the 1st 2 innings with no relief.  This was

done in response to teams starting a pitcher, having them pitch long enough to the be pitcher of record

for the inning (2 outs) and then pulling the pitcher.  We have not really enforced the 2 inning rule, but

the inclusion of the DRP will make this a meaningful rule once again. 

       DRP Advantage #1 - the DRP can relieve the starting pitcher at any time.   If this is done before

the start of the 3rd inning then the DRP may only pitch until the beginning of the 3rd inning - and no

more for the rest of that game (until extra innings as explained below).   If NO DRP is chosen by a team,

then the starting pitcher MUST pitch the 1st 2 innings with NO relief.

       If a DRP is chosen, all other players are allotted 4 innings of pitching and all of these must be

used by each different player before the innings refresh for the entire team.

        If no DRP is chosen, all players are allotted 5 innings of pitching and all of these must be used

by each player before the innings refresh for the entire team.

       DRP Advantage #2 - each player must pitch less innings before the entire team allotment resets.

       DRP Advantage #3 - the DRP can pitch any inning after the 3rd in any game.  This, in effect,

enables a DRP to pitch up to 6 innings in a normal 3 game series.

       DRP Advantage #4 - the DRP MUST pitch ALL extra innings in ALL games that reach extra

innings.   This rule allows a team's best pitcher to pitch those crucial innings when the game is on

the line.  It also helps prevent a team from choosing a DRP just to hide their worst pitcher.

      Speaking for the Legends, we will likely choose a DRP.  Ben or Levi are the obvious choices for us.

Ben because we want him to pitch as many innings as possible, Levi because he has gotten better and

better at pitching and has become our choice to shake things up from the mound.   He has no conscience

about throwing balls or even walking batters - a real problem with me and some other pitchers because

we just absolutely hate to walk people.   But there are times when a walk is the best thing - to avoid

someone who is hot, to put pressure on the next guy - to make someone who really wants to hit swing

at a bad pitch.   Levi is our best at doing this.  We feel confident with him on the mound and the game

on the line - even though we are blessed with a couple of really solid starting pitchers.


     The Conclusion of the Matter ?                                                                           Return to Top

     We are really excited to see how the DRP plays out.  Some teams will take advantage of it to keep

one of their guys OFF the mound - and run the risk of going into extra innings and having their worse 

pitcher be stuck trying to win the game.  Some will choose their best starter - hoping to get extra

innings for that player, and figure out not all innings are created equal.   Some will choose their

toughest pitcher and discover if you are down by 10 runs a relief pitcher is of little consequence.

      Other teams will choose to forego a DRP, and find they face the same really difficult pitcher even

more innings than before - reducing the cushion we all had when essentially everyone from every team

had to pitch - unless you had 5 players.

      Choose wisely grasshopper.

                                                                                                                                                    Return to Top  


Fill out my online form.

  Name and Date    Comment

Ty Marshal   1/27/2013


The same pitcher pitches all our games but we play fastpitch. We would like to play slow pitch but have been out voted when we tried.

We tried fastpitch Ty, but our guys decided slow pitch was more to their liking - less 1-0 games, less trying to get walks, more runs, hits, HRs and diving plays with slow pitch...our rules have evolved over the years to try and make it more fun and competitive for all - even girls and Little Leaguers...Jerry

                                                                                                                                                    Return to Top