Are American League teams required to have a designated hitter?


If a team has a good-hitting pitcher scheduled to pitch, can he bat in the game, instead of a DH? Do you know of an instance where this was done?



Answers:

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Required, no.

MLB Rule 6.10 (abridged):
Any League may elect to use the Designated Hitter Rule.
...
It is not mandatory that a club designate a hitter for the pitcher, but failure to do so prior to the game precludes the use of a Designated Hitter for that game.

In 1989, the Yankees used pitcher Rick Rhoden AS the DH in one game. He was a decent enough hitter as most pitchers go, but this day went 0-1 with a sacrifice fly.
Box: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1988/...

Cubs sold?

Absolutely not. You can use the pitcher to hit if you want. I would bet it's only happened less than five times since the rule went into effect in 1972.

Sometimes teams have switched the DH on to the field. In that case, the team loses the right to use a DH and the pitcher must hit. Doesn't happen often -- once a season -- but it's in the rule book.

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no, they aren't required. no i haven't seen anyone not use on. normally pitchers aren't good hitters period. if the team doesn't have enough money to hire a really good one they usually bring up the best hitting AAA guy they have

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Yes, he can bat, if that is what his manager chooses to do.

No, not offhand. I wouldn't doubt it, especially if all the usual DHs on a team were slumping badly or injured. If it did, it would probably have been right around the time the DH came into play, in 1973.

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A team can go without the DH but it is gone for the entire game. There has been many occasions that the DH was moved to a defensive position, ending its use for the rest of the game; once that happens the pitcher must bat in the batting order slot of the replaced player.

No manager has chosen to not use the DH; it puts his team at a competitive disadvantage.

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There's no requirement for any league to do so or to not do so. But there is the fact that the National League is the only league on the planet to not do so.

It's 6.10 of the rule book, and it starts:

"Any League may elect to use the Designated Hitter Rule."

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No.

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I think there has to be a DH in the American League unless they are playing against a NL team in a NL park

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