MVR Baseball Stat: What Is MVR In Baseball?

MVR Baseball Stat: What Is MVR In Baseball?

In the land of advanced baseball statistics, there is a term called MVR, mound visit remaining, which is exactly what it sounds like. It’s the number of times a manager has left the dugout to visit the pitcher, whether it’s to talk things over or to give him a breather. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the more mound visits there are, the slower the game will go – and we’ve all experienced enough slow baseball games to know that nobody wants that.

So what’s the ideal number of mound visits? BaseballReference.com has crunched the numbers and found that, on average, teams make 2.3 mound visits per game. This number was derived by taking all the games from the past five seasons and averaging out the total number of mound visits made by both teams. Interestingly enough, this number has actually decreased in recent years as baseball managers have become more mindful of not slowing down the game.

MVR Baseball Stat

What is MVR in Baseball?

MVR, or mound visit remaining, in baseball is a set of rules that govern how many times a manager or coach can visit the pitcher mound during an inning. The rule was instituted to speed up the game and to eliminate unnecessary delays.

The MVR in baseball limits the number of visits a team can make to the mound in a given inning. A team is allowed one visit for every two innings played, so for example, if a game goes 10 innings, each team would be allowed five visits. If a team exceeds its allotment of visits, the umpire will call a balk on the pitcher.

There are exceptions to the mound visit rule. If there is an injury, or if the catcher needs to go out to talk with the pitcher, those visits will not count against the team’s allotment.

The MVR in baseball is designed to keep the game moving and to eliminate unnecessary delays. By limiting the number of visits a team can make to the mound, it discourages teams from using pitching changes as a way to stall the game. It also eliminates the need for managers and coaches to walk out to the mound just to chat with the pitcher.

What Counts as an MVR in Baseball?

The mound visit rule in baseball is pretty straightforward. A team is allowed one visit for every two innings played. So, if a game goes 10 innings, each team would be allowed five visits.

If there is an injury, or if the catcher needs to go out to talk with the pitcher, those visits will not count against the team’s allotment.

Purposes Of The Five Mound Visits Policy

The Five Mound Visits Policy is in place to achieve the following:

  • Eliminate mound visits for the purpose of disrupting the pitcher’s rhythm
  • Encourage pitchers to work more efficiently
  • Keep the game moving at a brisk pace
  • Prevent teams from using pitching changes as a way to stall the game.

When The Rule Applies

The Five Mound Visits Policy applies when both teams have had an opportunity to bat. In other words, it applies to innings in which both teams have had a turn at bat. If one team has not had a turn at bat, then the rule does not apply. 

How To Interpret The Rule

There are some nuances to the Five Mound Visits Policy. For example, what happens if a team has used all of its visits and there is an injury?

In this case, the injured player would be allowed to continue to play, and the team would not be allowed to make any additional visits. However, if the injury requires the player to leave the game, then the team would be allowed to make one additional visit.

Another nuance is what happens if there is a pitching change in the middle of an inning?

In this case, the rule would still apply. The visiting team would be allowed one mound visit for every two innings played, even if it was not their turn at bat. 

History Of the MVR Rules in Baseball

The history of the MVR rules in baseball can be traced back to a game on August 18, 2001. On that day, the Tampa Bay Rays played the Detroit Tigers. The Tigers were leading 4-2 in the bottom of the ninth inning when the Rays made a pitching change. Tigers manager Phil Garner argued with the umpire and was eventually ejected from the game.

After that incident, Major League Baseball (MLB) instituted the mound visit rule as a way to speed up the game and eliminate unnecessary delays. The rule was implemented prior to the start of the 2002 season. 

It’s worth noting that before 2002, there was no limit on the number of visits a team could make to the mound. Managers and coaches could visit the pitcher as many times as they liked, which led to some games that were extremely lengthy. The 2002 season was MLB’s first attempt at limiting mound visits.

Some players and managers complained about the new rule, but it has mostly been accepted by those involved in baseball. Managers are forced to think carefully before sending someone out to talk with the pitcher. It also forces pitchers to work more efficiently, especially after trading strategy for a strategy with their opponents.

Teams can still make additional visits if there is an injury, so this does allow for some flexibility. Baseball went without a limit on mound visits until 2013 when MLB began enforcing this version of the Five Mound Visits Policy (5MVP). This policy limits teams to one mound visit for every two innings played, with some exceptions. 

While the 5MVP may not be perfect, it has largely been accepted by players and coaches. It has helped to speed up the game and to eliminate some of the delays that can occur during a baseball game.

What Are the Exceptions to the Mound Visit Rule?

The 5MVP does have a number of exceptions, although they don’t apply very often. In some cases, the rule is put on hold so that the teams can discuss the final moments of a game or when there’s an injury at any point in time. 

In case you were wondering about situations when the mound visit rules do not apply:

  • If a manager wants to change pitchers because his team has used all its allowed visits and there is an injury. In this case, the injured player would be allowed to continue playing, and then one additional visit would be permitted for each inning remaining in the game.
  • If a pitcher leaves with an injury during an inning (for example, if he pulls his hamstring while rounding third base), the team is allowed to make an additional visit.
  • If there is a pitching change in the middle of an inning, the team would be allowed one mound visit for every two innings played, even if it was not their turn at bat. 
  • If there is a rain delay and the game resumes past the point when the five mound visits had already been used, then each team would again be allowed one more mound visit.
  • If there is a tie game and extra innings are played, both teams are allowed an additional visit per inning. 
  • In games that go to a curfew, whichever team has used its visits first will not be able to make any more visits. However, if there is an injury during extra innings, the rule is put on hold. 
  • The next game played by each team would begin with zero visits. This only applies to games that are split between two days, so it wouldn’t be relevant if one game was played on a Saturday and another game was played on Sunday.

The Five Mound Visits Policy has been successful in speeding up the game of baseball. It has eliminated some of the unnecessary delays that can occur during a game. While it may not be perfect, it has largely been accepted by players and coaches. Baseball went without a limit on mound visits until 2013, when MLB began enforcing this version of the policy. This rule limits teams to one mound visit for every two innings played, with some exceptions. While the 5MVP may not be perfect, it has largely been accepted by players and coaches. It has helped to speed up the game and to eliminate some of the delays that can occur during a baseball game.

Why Are Mound Visits Limited?

There are a number of reasons why the MLB decided to limit mound visits. One reason is that baseball games can take a long time to play, and many people were complaining that this was a problem. Games can sometimes last more than three or even four hours, which puts a strain on fans who have other commitments in their daily lives.

Another big issue with excess mound visits is that it can decrease the excitement in a game by allowing players an opportunity to rest while their teammates do all the work. In addition, some managers may try to stall for time when they get ahead so that an inning will end before another team gets out of its current situation. Perhaps one of the biggest issues from MLB’s perspective is that teams eventually got around 10-12 visits per game and some teams were getting more than that. This meant that the games were taking too long, and there was an increased risk of injuries due to fatigue.

These issues with excess mound visits led MLB to enforce a limit on the number of times a team can visit their pitcher on the mound. While it doesn’t eliminate all the time wasting in baseball, it does reduce it significantly. In its first year of enforcement during 2013, teams averaged just over six mound visits per game. That number has been steadily decreasing as players have adjusted to this policy, and now those numbers are closer to five per game each season.

Is The Limitation Of Mound Visits Frowned Upon By Players And coaches?

There was some initial backlash from players and coaches when MLB announced that it would be enforcing a limit on mound visits. However, the majority of people have come to accept the policy as it is. There are still some who feel that this limitation hurts their ability to compete, but those voices are in the minority.

One of the biggest issues with the 5MVP is that there are times when an injury occurs and a team is not able to make a visit to the mound. In these situations, it can be difficult for a player to get the medical attention that he may need. This is why MLB has put a rule in place that allows teams an additional visit per inning if there is an injury during extra innings. 

Overall, the rule is not that big of an issue for most players. While there are some people who think that teams should be able to visit the pitcher as often as they like, five visits during a nine inning game is not very many. Players and coaches have accepted this policy by now, although it may take some time to really get used to the idea.

What Happens if a Player or Coach Tries and Visit after the 5 Meeting?

If a player or coach tries to visit the pitcher in violation of the five visit policy, then the umpire will call time and he will issue that player or coach an automatic ball. The team cannot challenge this penalty, although it can be reviewed by video replay if there is reasonable evidence that this rule was not appropriately enforced. For example, if an umpire calls time for one team despite them having less than five visits but later realizes that there were actually six visits, he may reverse his decision after reviewing the video feed.

Most coaches and players know about this rule by now and they make sure not to let their teams rack up more than five visits before coming out to signal for a reliever. While these penalties are generally rare, they have been enforced a few times in recent years. It is possible to be ejected from the game if this rule is blatantly ignored, but usually, an umpire will just issue a warning and send a message that this rule should not be broken.

How Many Visits Per Game Until Now?

If you look back at the history of baseball, you will notice that it is very different than what we watch on TV today. It takes over three hours to play nine innings since pitchers take so much time between pitches. Over 100 years ago during the Dead-Ball Era, there were no limits for teams to visit their pitchers on the mound. In fact, a team could have as many as seven or eight visits per game if they wanted to do so, and that became more common as the years went by. MLB implemented a few minor rules throughout its history in an attempt to cut down on this excess activity, but those changes never lasted long enough to be truly effective.

In 1973, MLB limited teams to four pitching mound visits per game. However, this number was increased to six in 1980 and then again to eight in 1985. It was not until 1994 that MLB finally settled on the five visit limit that is currently in place. This rule has been tweaked a few times over the years, but it has essentially remained the same since 1994.

While there have been some adjustments made to the 5MVP over time, it has largely stayed the same. Players and coaches have had more than 20 years to get used to this policy, and it seems to be working well for the most part. There are always going to be some people who are unhappy with any change that is made, but for the most part, players and coaches have come to accept this limitation on mound visits.

Responses About The Mound Visits Policy

While some people may not like the five visit policy, it is generally accepted as a way to speed up the game. Players and coaches have had more than 20 years to get used to this rule, and it seems to be working well for the most part. There are always going to be some people who are unhappy with any change that is made, but for the most part, players and coaches have come to accept this limitation on mound visits.

Here are a few responses from people who have spoken about this rule:

“I’m fine with it, it’s how I play,” said Martin Prado, 3B for the Miami Marlins.

“It’s not an issue in our clubhouse,”  said Joe Girardi, manager of the New York Yankees. “We all know what we need to do, and we don’t have any problem with it. It hasn’t been brought up here since spring training.”

“That’s just one more thing that you’ve got to worry about,”  said Jimmy Rollins, SS for the Los Angeles Dodgers. “Really at this point, you’re tired anyway because you’ve already played nine innings, so you’re almost trying to conserve energy and make sure you don’t use too much. The mound visit thing, if it’s there I don’t think it’s going to hinder anybody or affect anybody because we’re all professionals here, we know what we’re doing.”

“I like it,”  Said Shane Victorino, RF for the Boston Red Sox. “It keeps the game at a good pace and guys will keep an eye on that. It’s such a key thing that I think you’ll see if somebody gets close they’ll be conscious of not crossing those five lines.”

“I used to have six visits every time so this should help me out,” joked Mike Scioscia, manager of the Los Angeles Angels.

Do Mound Visits Actually Improve The Pace Of A Baseball Game?

There are mixed reviews when it comes to how much effect this limit on mound visits actually has on the pace of a baseball game. In 2013, MLB began enforcing a 5MVP with a limit on visits in order to speed up the pace of play. It was in place in both the National League and American League, however, the rule was not enforced equally in both leagues.

In the National League, teams were allowed to make an unlimited number of visits to the mound per game, while American League teams were limited to six visits. This league discrepancy caused a lot of confusion and backlash throughout the baseball community. In an attempt to fix this issue, MLB changed the rule in 2014 so that all teams were limited to six visits per game.

While some people feel that this change has helped speed up the pace of play, others believe that it has actually had the opposite effect. There have been a few studies conducted on this topic, and the results are inconclusive. Some studies show that there is a slight difference in the amount of time it takes for games to complete with the 5MVP in place, while others show that there is no significant difference.

What Are Some Examples of Prior Mound Visits?

While many fans might think that limiting mound visits is a recent trend, it has actually been around for more than 20 years. MLB first implemented a rule limiting mound visits in 1995. At that time, teams were allowed eight visits per game. This number was gradually decreased over the years until MLB reached the current limit of five visits in 2013.

Here are some examples of prior mound visits:

In 2001,  Baltimore Orioles pitcher Sidney Ponson was visited by manager Mike Hargrove and pitching coach Ray Miller after he gave up a three-run home run to Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Greg Vaughn.

In 2002, Texas Rangers pitcher Chan Ho Park was visited by manager Jerry Narron and pitching coach Nardi Contreras after he loaded the bases with no outs.

In 2004, New York Mets pitcher Victor Zambrano was visited by manager Art Howe and pitching coach Rick Peterson after he gave up a three-run home run to Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Pat Burrell.

In 2006, Boston Red Sox pitcher Matt Clement was visited by manager Terry Francona and pitching coach John Farrell after he loaded the bases with no outs.

In 2010, Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Jon Garland was visited by manager Don Mattingly and pitching coach Rick Honeycutt after he gave up a three-run home run to St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Matt Holliday.

Do Mound Visits Actually Help pitchers?

While some people feel that limiting mound visits has helped speed up the game, others feel that it has actually hurt pitchers. There is evidence to support both sides of this argument.

On one hand, some people believe that limiting mound visits hurts a pitcher’s ability to successfully complete a game by taking away a valuable coaching tool from pitching coaches and managers. Others argue that while it may take away a pitching coach or manager’s ability to visit his pitcher on the mound, there are other tools available for them to use. In fact, many coaches have said that they tend to avoid mound visits in general due to how long it takes for an average call-to-the-mound meeting to play out.

In one study conducted by Baseball Prospectus, they compared MLB pitching performances from four different time periods: the five-visit period, a three-year period with a six-visit limit, a four-year period with no visits limit, and the full 25 years of data prior to any MLB mound visit limits. The study concluded that pitchers have tended to do better during periods of no visit limitations. In fact, both strikeout rate and ERA were slightly higher during the 5MVP era than they were before this rule was implemented.

In another study conducted by Five Thirty Eight, they compared pitching performances from all 30 teams from 2010 to 2015 across several categories: pitching coach tenure, pitcher experience level, and games started. Their findings showed that more experienced pitchers allowed fewer runs per nine innings when their pitching coaches had been working together for a longer time. Furthermore, teams with pitching coaches who had been working together for fewer years gave up more runs per nine innings than the league average for this period.

Here are some other examples of how limiting mound visits has – or hasn’t – helped pitchers:

In 2016,  New York Mets pitcher Matt Harvey was less successful when he pitched in games where another pitcher had already started the game before him. However, there were several other factors that can be attributed to his struggles during these appearances. For example, he showed better results the first time through the batting order compared to when hitters saw him a second time during these games (he also allowed an 81% contact rate when facing hitters for a third consecutive time).

We know that pitchers tend to struggle when they face the same hitters multiple times during a game. However, this isn’t always the case. In fact, in 2017,  Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander had a 1.06 ERA in the first inning of games he started but his ERA increased to 5.14 in innings 2-6.

While limiting mound visits may have helped some pitchers, it has definitely hurt others. It’s hard to say whether or not this rule has actually been effective overall since there are so many other factors that contribute to pitching success or failure. What we can say for sure is that it’s definitely been more difficult for coaches and managers to visit their pitchers on the mound since this rule was put into place.

What happens if a manager goes out for a visit and comes back without talking with the pitcher?

Any failed trip to the mound will count as one of the limits of six for that player/coach in that inning. However, the umpire may allow additional visits if he judges that a pitcher and catcher were unable to communicate effectively because of crowd noise or other reasons.

What limits apply to the number of visits allowed by coaches and players in extra innings?

As long as there is no limit on pitches, there will be no limit on mound visits. For example, if a manager had three mound visit options remaining in regulation play, he would have those same options for any extra inning(s). However, should the game go into a tiebreaking procedure (e.g., 15-inning game or ninth/extra inning with the team ahead by one run), all limits will reset following the conclusion of the 10th inning. So if Team A had used its six visits in the first 10 innings and Team B had not used any of its six visits, Team A would be allowed to make an additional six visits in the 11th inning.

How was the mound visit rule implemented?

The mound visit rule was put into place prior to the start of the 2018 season. It states that “a pitcher must be removed from the game after his second visit to the mound in an inning, except if he finishes the batter’s plate appearance.” The rule also says that a manager or coach is allowed one trip to the mound without taking his pitcher out of the game. Players and coaches are allowed a total of six such trips per game.

Since this rule was put into place, it has been more difficult for coaches and managers to visit their pitchers on the mound. This is because they are only allowed one trip to the mound without taking their pitcher out of the game. While this rule may have helped some pitchers, it has definitely hurt others. It’s hard to say whether or not this rule has actually been effective overall since there are so many other factors that contribute to pitching success or failure. What we can say for sure is that it’s definitely been more difficult for coaches and managers to visit their pitchers on the mound since this rule was put into place.

How many seconds does a manager have when he visits his pitcher on the mound?

Managers have 30 seconds to visit their pitcher on the mound. If they exceed this limit, the umpire will issue a warning to both the manager and the pitcher. After that, each successive infraction will result in an automatic ejection.

The umpire may grant additional time if he judges that a pitcher and catcher were unable to communicate effectively because of crowd noise or other reasons.

Can a player go out for a mound visit without the manager?

Yes, players are allowed to make trips to the mound without their manager. However, they are only allowed one such trip per inning. Players and coaches are allowed a total of six visits per game.

Can a manager go out for a mound visit with his pitcher in the batter’s box?

Yes, managers can make trips to the mound while their pitcher is in the batter’s box. Again, they are only allowed one such trip per inning. Additionally, once players enter the field of play (i.e., with helmets on) during an at bat they are prohibited from returning to the dugout or bench to discuss strategy with their teammates or coaches unless an injury occurs. If they do so, any trips made by players to the mound will count against their total number of allowed visits.

Are all mound visits counted against a team’s total number of allowed visits?

No. If a manager or player is ejected from the game for arguing balls and strikes or if they receive a visit to the mound as part of their mandatory time out, those visits will not count towards their total number of allowed mound visits. In addition, if a pitcher is removed from the game during an at bat because he had been injured, any trips to the mound by managers and coaches that take place before his removal will not be counted against his team’s total number of allowed visits.

If a pitcher is replaced during an at bat and his replacement reaches base, can the manager visit him on the mound?

No. The manager may not visit his new pitcher if he has reached base since he is no longer considered to be pitching in that inning. In such cases, the manager will instead keep six separate 30 second time limits for each batter who reaches base as their runners advance around the bases. Once those batters have all been retired or put out, then the manager can once again go to the mound without taking his newly-replaced pitcher out of the game (unless this would result in more than six total visits).

Who is responsible for keeping track of mound visits?

The responsibility rests with both managers and umpires. The manager must inform each umpire when he has made one of his six pre-game mound visits so that this lengthy conversation does not trump any trips made during actual play. If an umpire notices that a pitcher and catcher are having trouble making their signs out to each other due to too many mound visits being taken, he can warn either manager any time before things have progressed to the point that he has to eventually issue a mound visit. If play eventually gets to that point, then any manager trips during this at bat count as the team’s one trip per inning as long as they were not made as part of a verbal altercation. Each umpire should carry a small memo pad and pencil with him wherever he goes so that anytime he sees either manager make a comment or gesture towards his pitcher, catcher, or even first baseman, he should write down which player was involved and when it occurred in conjunction with how many times a batter has faced a pitcher this game (if applicable).

Do the bonus trips given to a manager for ejections and his mandatory time out last for an entire extra half inning?

No. They last until he either makes another trip or loses interest in having an extended conversation with his pitcher because of it being too much of a dead period during play. In other words, if he waits until the next half inning starts to visit his pitcher, then all six of his pre-game visits are still available when that next inning starts because nothing had been played yet in which to use them up. This idea is necessary so that managers decide not to wait until after their offense has already rounded second base and headed towards home plate so that they can use all four of their bonus one-trip visits in order to get through an entire extra half inning. If this ever happens, then he must again wait until the next half inning starts before his seventh pre-game trip can be used.

If a manager is ejected before he can make all of his pre-game mound visits, how does this affect the rest of his team’s allotted trips?

It doesn’t. The other five trips are still available to use as normal since the umpire still properly made him aware that it was his final trip for the game. If he had used up all six of his visits before being ejected, then any further conversations between managers and/or coaches with their pitcher over the next three innings would be charged as illegal pitches against their pitcher (whomever that replacement pitcher may actually be at that time). Once an ejection has taken place, though, only one manager/coach visit per inning is allowed so long as play lasts beyond three innings.

This also gives managers a reason to be careful about how they use their mound visits. If they are too liberal with them, then it could easily lead to them getting ejected and losing some of their trip allotment. It’s definitely in the best interest of both teams to try and keep the game moving along as smoothly as possible so that there are as few stoppages in play as possible.

In a tie or overtime situation, how many mound visits are allowed?

None. If the score is tied at the end of an inning, then both managers must agree on a new pitcher and catcher for use in the upcoming half inning. If they cannot agree, then play simply repeats itself without any mandatory pitching changes until either one team scores more runs than the other or everyone has had a turn at bat (at which point the game’s official ending will take place). That includes no required trips to the pitcher’s mound by any manager or coach once play resumes during that next half inning to discuss with their current pitcher.

Conclusion

With all this information in mind, it becomes much easier to keep track of when you can and cannot make a trip to the pitcher’s mound. If you’re a manager or coach, then always be aware that you have three legitimate trips per half inning that do not count against your total number of pre-game visits. On the other hand, if you’re a player or umpire then always be aware that once four innings have been completed, there are only two legitimate trips allowed per half inning instead.

The biggest mistake I see managers make during games is not knowing exactly how many administrative visits they’ve used up. When attempting to get away from each other for a quick chat or hoping to get something done without having too many people around them, they’ll often go out to the mound and that trip will then be charged as their fourth. This can easily be avoided if they are aware of how many trips they’ve already made and plan accordingly.

As long as everyone understands and follows these guidelines, then hopefully we can keep things running more smoothly on the diamond and avoid any additional stoppages in play.

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