Team or Pitcher? A look at the high school baseball playoffs layout/format(Do we need changes?)

from on our regular readers and he has some very good questions for you…..

I have really become to dislike the scheduling and or format for the high school baseball state playoffs. I have said this for years and now thought I would throw it out there to see what others thought.

With the current format do we find out who has the best team in the end or who has the best pitcher? I purpose that teams should play M, W, F or either once past the first game go directly to a two out of three, or something to push these rounds closer together. With the current format T, F, S or W, S, W the same kid can go to the mound for each game.

I will use South Johnston for an example ( this is not a poke at SJ as they play hard and seemed well-coached just merely an example as I think it is up to the player and parent to get involved with pitch counts and days of rest). SJ threw who appeared to be their ace last Tuesday, brought him in again on Friday night, and I am guessing and could be wrong , but will most likely start him again on Tuesday. Why wouldn’t they with the current format? This sophomore has very good tools and I am sure that this will be mirrored by other teams as well with the current format.

Colleges play some kind of round robins and MLB plays best of series which showcases which team is best in the end not who has the best pitcher. I realize that there are some factors of why the scheduling is like it is but feel as if you ever want a true measure of a “team” you need to force them into the bench or bull pen to get more accurate results. At the very least, play three in a-row with four days rest and start it again the next week.

I was curious of the opinion of others on this and if the current format has ever been discussed or challenged?



  1. It is discussed EVERY year by/in the NC Baseball Coaches Association. We have “brought” it to the NCHSAA as well. In the end, not enough people behind it. HOWEVER, to make it work (2 of 3 series playoffs every round – assuming that is your idea, correct?) there would most likely HAVE to be a reduction from 64 to 32 teams. That in mind, 32 teams from this year – every 3 seed and below would be OUT. Now, you may say,” well that would still get the best team,” but: NOT SO FAST MY FRIEND! A team could finish #1 or #2 in conference by riding that same one stud arm in many league schedules where that guy could pitch 6 of 10 or 7 of 10 conference games within a staggered schedule. The ONLY way to really get this “done” is to have all conferences play weekly series and then have series in playoffs… then again, it’s still a bunch of teenagers, and in any given series things could go south for the “better team” and a group of Cinderellas could wear a slipper. It’s our beautiful game!

  2. Cat coach is right. You would have to reduce the field. That will not happen. I do like the idea of playing the games closer together so the same kid can’t pitch several games. Teams with depth will ultimately win out.

  3. How bout keep the 64 teams and go round 1 Monday, round 2 Tuesday, round 3 Wednesday and then start round 4 the next Monday, round 5 Tuesday, and then play a three game series for the championship the next mon,tues,wed?

  4. I know for a fact that Texas and Georgia currently do a 3 game series in the playoffs….and I’m pretty sure that South Carolina does as well. Look at their “model” and see why it works and if it is doable here in NC. I looked at the USA Top 25 high school poll one time and wondered how could a high school team be 44-1 at the end of the season….and poof I looked at their playoff brackets from that state and all their rounds were best 2 of 3….

  5. Wahoo, you would be playing the whole playoffs in like 15 days if I’m counting correctly… slow down Big Fella.

    In the end, baseball is not a point of interest for “the state.” Probably same bat time, same bat channel next year….

Comments are closed.