If you are a baseball fan, then you have probably heard the term MVR before. But what does it mean? This article will discuss What is MVR in detail and answer any questions that you may have about this metric.
What Is MVR in Baseball?
Mound Visits Remaining (MVR) is an advanced metric used to determine how many visits per game each pitcher receives. A visit consists of one player or coach leaving the dugout and entering the mound circle to speak with the pitcher.
Mound visits are defined as trips by managers, coaches or players to the mound during a game. Visits to the mound typically occur when the manager wants to relay signs to his pitcher, discuss strategy with his pitcher, or remove his pitcher from the game. Visits also happen with injured players at risk of further injury if they stay in the game.
Mound visits are recorded by baseball scorekeepers, who mark X’s next to the names of those who made mound visits during a game. A single visit is counted each time an individual leaves his position and crosses the foul line to visit the pitcher on the mound.
Consecutive or multiple visits by one player or team in the same inning are confusing to scorers and fans. In this situation, a visit is counted only the first time an individual crosses the foul line.
Governs mound visits:
There shall be no more than six (6) players from one team at any one time on the pitcher’s plate, with one player on base.
1) The catcher and pitcher do not count against this limit if the pitcher does not make a play involving contact with the catcher (such as a pick-off throw).
2) When not in the act of fielding a ball, any fielder may be positioned anywhere in fair territory.
3) If two fielders, neither of whom is in the catcher’s area, are attempting to catch a third strike on a swinging bunt, they do not count against the limit.
4) If there is a runner, or runners, it is permissible for a coach to be in contact with the base with one hand or arm.
5) A player making a play on a batted ball may momentarily step from the box and, in the umpire’s judgment, he does not violate this Rule 8.05.
6) If there is a runner, or runners, it is permissible for more than six (6) players to occupy the pitcher’s plate as long as none of those players cause the batter to be put out.
Mound Visits During A Game
1. There are six (6) mound visits allowed per team, per game. If a manager or coach is ejected he/she will not count against the six (6) mound visits allowed by that team for the remainder of the game but any violations of this rule are subject to protest.
2. A second visit by a manager or coach in the same inning will result in an automatic pitching change. Once the umpire has determined that a pitching change is warranted, the manager/coach may select any pitcher on his staff to pitch except for those players he already visited during the game. Any violations of this rule will be subject to protest.
3. Visits by Players: When a pitcher leaves the mound his teammates must remain in the dugout or field seated and facing either forward or towards their respective bench. No player may sit on the top step of the dugout in such a manner as to interfere with play (except when specifically allowed to do so by the umpire).
NOTE: Entering the playing surface is prohibited and only managers, coaches or players involved in a substitution or conference will be allowed to leave their dugouts/benches. Violations of this rule shall be subject to protest.
4. More than six (6) players may not occupy the space between the pitcher’s rubber and the back line of the catcher’s box. Such players must remain on the field with an exception being made when a manager or coach enters the space between the pitching rubber and back line of home plate, in which case all other coaches shall vacate this area immediately.
NOTE: This does not apply to a catcher leaving his box to confer with the pitcher, or to a catcher who has to step off the rubber (and into the coach’s box) in an attempt to retire a runner attempting to steal.
5. If more than six players occupy the space between the pitchers’ rubber and the back line of the catcher’s box, the umpire shall declare both teams’ managers out.
6. With less than two (2) outs the batter will be awarded first base on a delayed dead ball penalty. If there are two (2) outs, the batter will be awarded first base on a delayed dead ball penalty. The offense shall not benefit by placing more than six (6) players on either side of the coaching box or within its confines during an at bat. If there is a runner or runners on base and this rule is violated with less than two (2) outs, the offense will lose its time out.
7. The catcher shall be allowed a reasonable amount of time to throw down to second base on a pitchout. If this is not done in a reasonable time, the umpire will call a strike on the batter and order all runners to advance one base. Any other runners on first base will be allowed to run at their own risk.
8. More than two (2) infielders shall not occupy the space between the pitcher’s rubber and either first or third base during any play.
9. If a defensive player makes a play on an infield-fly ball, he may make no throw to first base and players must return to their original positions (players did not need to be in contact with the bag). Any violation of this rule is subject to protest.
10. A fielder making a play on a batted ball while not in contact with the bag, must throw to the base where the runner was when he hit the ball. Any violation of this rule is subject to protest.
11. If after one warning by the umpire, players continue to stand outside the coach’s box during play, they will be removed from the game with no replacement permitted.
12. If a manager/coach leaves his team’s bench area to call the attention of an umpire to an infraction of these rules or for any other purpose with less than two (2) outs he must return immediately at the conclusion of the play or once he sees the umpire acknowledge his presence. Otherwise, both managers will be warned and if repeated shall be subject to ejection by the umpire.
Why Is Knowing MVR Important?
The more trips a pitcher makes to the mound per game, whether they are successful or not, the more fatigued he becomes. Fatigued pitchers become more susceptible to injury and have a harder time performing at their peak levels of performance. Since MVR is a percentage, it can be used to evaluate a team’s rotations as well as individual players.
How To Improve MVR?
The best way for a pitcher to improve his MVR is to improve upon his overall pitching performance. That being said, there are several other tips that can help him become more efficient and thus get more mound visits per game without actually pitching better:
- Pace Yourself: A pitcher should pace himself and throw no more than 12-15 pitches per inning. By doing this, he can use his best stuff in late innings when it counts the most while limiting the number of times he has to go to the mound.
- Maintain Focus: It’s important for pitchers to stay focused no matter how exhausted they are. Staying in the game mentally will not only help him limit his walks, but it may also keep him from having to visit the mound as often.
- Limit Unnecessary Mound Visits: A pitcher should never leave the mound unless he absolutely needs to (i.e., injury). The more unnecessary trips he makes to the mound, the more fatigued he becomes.
- Improve Pickoff Move: As useful as pitching out of the windup is, it’s tougher for a pitcher to make multiple trips to the mound with runners on base. For this reason, if a pitcher wants his manager to give him consistent MVRs every game, he should improve his pickoff move to the point where he can get pitches out of the stretch. Only a few elite pitchers have no need for a pickoff move, making them valuable commodities in today’s modern game.
- Improve Mound Presence: This aspect of pitching is more about intimidation and attitude than anything else. If a pitcher appears to be crazy and mean enough, his manager will give him more leeway in terms of mound visits. The best example of this is Trevor Bauer. Despite having an above average pitching arsenal, he’s been penalized by Major League Baseball for visiting the mound too much because he wears his emotions on his sleeve every time he pitches.
The following situations can call for an exception to the mound visit rule
When a team is attempting to protest a game. In this case, the umpire shall ask what the grounds for protest are and whether there has been a pitch thrown. If so, he cancels the pending protest and forfeits any money deposited with the home team.
When a player on the disabled list is being substituted for in the lineup, provided it is done before the pitcher takes his place on the rubber and the umpire is notified of such substitution at least one minute prior to the next pitch or play. If there’s a pitching change follow this link for exceptions when a pitcher can leave mound early
When a player, coach or manager who has been ejected from the game is leaving the field, provided that he does so immediately and directly to the locker room or bench area. Follow this link for exceptions to this rule
There are no exceptions to the mound visit rule. Any time a coach, manager, player or umpire visits the mound it is an automatic mound visit and the pitcher must leave the game without throwing a pitch.
However, if more than one of these exceptions occurs before the next pitch or play, only the first requires an announcement. After that, all personnel changes are automatically legal. Follow this link for information on how many pitching changes (mound visits) can occur in an inning.
Why Are Mound Visits Limited?
In a baseball game, there are some rules that have been set in place over the years that can seem strange or unusual. One of these is “The Rule for Visits to the Mound”. In most leagues only one person from each team is allowed to go to the mound at a time and it must be their own player.
Also, the visit must be made between innings. They are given six seconds to make their way to the mound and start talking with their pitcher. During this visit they can either talk strategy or tell them what is working that game or that inning.
The main reason for limiting mound visits was because of injuries that were happening on the field. The longer the players were on the field, the more opportunity there was for injury to happen.
Another reason is because it would give their opponent an advantage. With each team having five coaches out on the field it can be hard to determine what moves are being sent from the dugout and which ones originated from a coach that had been talking with his pitcher during a mound visit.
Another unusual rule that baseball has is “The Rule for Getting a Pitcher Re-Acquainted“. The pitcher needs to be allowed time to get back into the game and find his rhythm again. There are two ways this can be handled, depending on the situation.
A starting pitcher can either throw three practice pitches before an inning starts or they can throw eight to ten warm-up pitches before the inning. Either way, whatever number of throws is agreed upon must be completed before the pitcher can throw his first pitch in that inning.
The reasoning behind this rule was to try and cut back on injuries caused by overworking pitchers. They wanted them to build up their arm strength and stamina without having to throw every pitch in a game.
In most sports there are rules that can be different depending on the league or even what country you’re playing in, but with baseball these two rules have been around for as long as the sport has been played. It is hard to say whether they will ever be changed or removed.