Clipping:A relief pitching scheme by innings

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Date Tuesday, June 18, 1889

[Pittsburgh vs. Indianapolis 6/17/1889] It was a hard game to lose because it looked like a sure victory up to the sixth inning, and would have been had not Manager Bancroft, acting upon a standing order to do so daily, changed the pitchers and turned the tide in favor of the visitors. The opening game with Pittsburg was lost on the same account—the absurd plan of changing pitchers in the middle of every game, no matter how well the man who starts in is doing. That this plan caused yesterday's defeat cannot be doubted for a moment. It may be well enough to take a man out of the box if he is being hit freely, but to do so when he is pitching remarkably well, as was the case with G3tzein yesterday, is, to express it mildly, stupid direction. The German was doing great work, and expressed a desire to remain in the box, but was not allowed to do so. The visitors earned one run in the second inning, but after that they could not touch his delivery with any success, only four hits being made up to the time he retired. The team was supporting him in fine form and was hitting Galvin with great freedom. It was almost a sure thing that the Hoosiers would win until Burdick went into the box, at the opening of the sixth, when he was hit for three singles, a double, a triple and a home run in quick order. This, with an error by Glassock allowed five men to cross the plate.

...Just where the home management discovered this new plan is not very clear, and it is altogether probable that it will be abandoned; at least it should be. The players do not like it, and Manager Bancroft is also strongly opposed to it. He very sensibly argues that if a pitcher cannot hold up through nine innings when he is in good condition, he is of no account and does not earn his salary. If a man weakens and the opposing batters hit his delivery hard and often, then and only then, is there any sense in making a change. The Indianapolis team would have won three games instead of one from Pittsburg, had it not been for this new idea. In the case of Rusie it was a wise move to take him out, for the reason that he was being hit hard and was nervous and wild. But Getzein was doing the best work he has done this season, and the change was a great mistake. It is true, many games have been lost after the sixth inning when the pitcher has done good work up to that point ,and President Brush, hoping to turn the current, concluded to try this plan. It is a failure. The best managers in the country say it is an unwise thing to take a pitcher out in the middle of a game when he is doing even average work.

Source Indianapolis Journal
Submitted by Richard Hershberger
Origin Initial Hershberger Clippings


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