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Hurdle: Pitch counts for starters 'out the window'

Mike Stobe

Some interesting news came out of Pirates manager Clint Hurdle's press scrum this afternoon. When asked whether Gerrit Cole making his major league debut changes anything in terms of his decision-making tonight – like watching pitch counts more closely, or being sensitive to early jams – Clint said that he will no longer be monitoring pitch counts when it comes to starters. They will no longer factor into his decision-making when comes to starters (he will still pay close attention to the pitch counts of relievers).

Because I think this is interesting and important, I’m going to provide a fairly full transcript with more notes from the scrum to follow in another post:

My approach in terms of pitches, actually we were having a conversation today, I’m not paying attention to the number of pitches anymore, the rest of the year, for anybody. I’m serious. Just so you know.

It’s going to be about the barrel of the bat on the other team. The times men get on base. How they handle the stretch situation. Whether duress picks up or anything like that.

I want to make sure we have nobody looking at the rear view mirror at 95 pitches thinking “I’ll only got so many left.” That’s out the window. Gerritt’s in that group as well. I mean, just pitch. If you want to have a goal. Some of us men need goals. Pitch seven full innings and we’ll figure it out after that what our next step is. That’s where we’re going.