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Nov. 30, 2023
DirkPitt
Topic: Players looking to join a team
Discussion: Moving to villages fl.

Top Dawgs are a 60M team out of The Villages along with 60 Caliber which is a 60's Florida Half Century Team. Check out the softball info under the villages recreation department for how to go through evaluations and get placed into a Villages league.
Sept. 26, 2023
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: For Dave Dowell

Dave:

Saying don't be one of "those teams" is an unwarranted comment. Moving from M to M+ is a big deal as the top M+ teams are heavily sponsored and fund most/all expenses for their players. A self-funded M team cannot compete with those teams. To not be one of "those teams" a player gets to look forward to spending thousands of dollars knowing that you aren't going to compete at the national level. Furthermore, for many of the smaller tournaments, you may get "lucky enough" to play a 2 out of 3 "tournament" against a team you probably play regularly already or you'll play down and likely have to give the equalizer. I can't say I've talked to anyone who is in this situation that finds this enjoyable and I know guys who have been on "those teams" and are very happy with their decision to move on and start over with another team.

If you want an example, look at the 60M+ bracket. Very few teams and dominated by two teams (for years). The 55+ bracket is not much different.

The solution for many self funded teams is to be "one of those teams" and break up or play in ISSA, SPA or other and simply forgo SSUSA.

I know this has been discussed previously and you aren't going to take input from the message board but saying suck it up and spend the money just to not be one of "those teams" is self serving for SSUSA.
Aug. 15, 2023
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: softball replacement

Despite what some of the tournament directors say, the performance of the Baden ball is similar to the Trump ball. When new, these balls are as good as many. After 2-3 innings of play they do not perform the same as a new ball and hence the reason for the better/top teams to want a new(er) ball as often as they can afford it. A pretty simple real-world confirmation of this is that teams wouldn't care if other teams "threw in a new ball" if there was no performance degradation as the game progressed.

We go through 8-12+ balls a tournament (figure 1-2 new balls/game). Some get lost but all that remain go into the BP bucket after the tournament, never to be used again in a game. Softballs are like batting gloves. They wear out with use. Just part of the game. Some batting gloves last longer, some don't. Some balls last longer, some don't.

While not part of this discussion, the Tatoo has the most durability and seems to retain its "out of box" performance the longest. Even if those balls are $1-$2 more per ball, they are worth it in the long run. Teams would save money paying extra for those balls as they last longer.

I like the fact that SSUSA controls the supply of balls, ensuring that all teams are using the same ball - new or used. I wish they would look at a more durable ball but I don't run the program and it just means we spend ~$50/tournament on balls.


Feb. 9, 2023
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Interference or Not

B.J. - here is one for you from this past weekend and is similar to the above. I'm pretty sure I know the answer but just confirming.

Batter hits a very short pop-up that is going to land ~5-8ft in front of home plate. Catcher collides with RH batter-runner as he attempts to field the ball. Umpire ruled the batter-runner safe and stated that the batter-runner has a right to the baseline.


Jan. 16, 2023
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: 9. Make safety bag plays safer

The fact that ASA/USA has this rule is irrelevant. We are talking about guys who are 50 to 70 plus in age. We move at a different pace and we don't have the agility that the younger guys do. Like BJ, I have umpired and played for a long time and I really can't remember a play where a senior softball player had a ball bounce off their chest into foul territory and have the quickness to retrieve the ball and make a play on the safety bag side of first. BJ is correct, the more likely scenario is an errant throw pulls the first baseman off the bag and into foul territory. The runner now has the responsibility of changing the direction to avoid the collision. Again, maybe a 30 to 40-year-old can do this without problem but a 60 to 70-year-old is not going to have the agility to avoid collisions.

Just my observations. SSUSA has not commented so it appears this rule is as newly drafted and the data will speak for itself as the year progresses. It just seems like a solution in search of a problem for our age groups.
Jan. 13, 2023
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: 9. Make safety bag plays safer

Not sure I understand the logic on this one. This will cause a lot of controversy and probably some serious injuries.
Dec. 16, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: 2023 TOC

I didn't take any comment as beating up SSUSA. I only hear disappointment and encouragment for collaboration in the future. The SSUSA tournament is a great tournament. The ISSA tournament is not a real TOC. Teams don't have to win to participate and it's not based on 2022 rosters. There are a few teams participating in an age group there that they did not even participate in during 2022.

The challenge we're encountering is because ISSA is 2023 rosters we have players who are moving up in age group or changing teams and they are having to chose between the "last" 2022 tournament or the "first" 2023 tournament. It seems most are more inclined to move forward with their new team(s).

Can't change anything, just observations.

One thing I don't agree with is blaming the second organization to schedule. Both groups know it's in their mutual interests to not overlap and either group could have reached out to the other. That may have happened but per Dave's & Tim's comments above, it doesn't sound like it did. Going forward, it is suggested that you work together or players are going to have to pick sides, which isn't what any of us want to do.
Dec. 15, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: 2023 TOC

Makes no sense Bobby. Only reason I can think of is the two groups didn't communicate. FHC 60's is that weekend also. It's really screwing a lot of teams as many guys play multiple age groups and now they have to choose one tournament over the other. I've talked to three teams that planned to play SSUSA and are now short players because some of their guys are playing in the other TOC. It's going to be very hard to find players as most travel players are already committed to one or the other.

Stupid is the word that comes to mind...
Nov. 7, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Teams looking for players

Dave, does that mean the exception that was originally for COVID remains in effect for 2023? I thought that was not going to be "renewed" for 2023?
Sept. 20, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Hows the new ball performing at worlds Dave?

We played 55AAA and found the balls to be much BETTER than the Trump balls - which is a low bar as the Trump balls are some of the worst balls out there. The Trump balls last a few innings at best. The Baden Fire balls seemed to be at least as good as the Trump at the start of the game but didn't lose their performance as quickly as the Trump does. I agree with everyone else, these balls discolored quickly and flew somewhat erratically at times in the OF. Overall though, not a bad ball and I believe a good option for SSUSA for this tournament.

The Tatoo remains the best ball out there in my opinion. The Rock is a great ball for Vegas but if SSUSA would switch to the Tatoo that would be great. I don't buy the argument that they are too expensive. Not sure why we're even having that debate since the teams ultimately pay the fee for the balls, NOT SSUSA. Even at $2-$3 extra/ball that's only $12-$18 more per team each tournament. That's a silly amount to justify purchasing a ball that almost nobody wants (Trump or some of the other yellow turds we've used at other tournaments this year).

Separately - I think they folks running the tournament this past weekend did a great job at the fields. Our team had no complaints and everyone on the SSUSA staff was very helpful. Kudos to all those that made the weekend happen. It's a huge undertaking and it went great from this perspective.
Aug. 5, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Am i wrong to think this way

I play in the Florida Half Century league as I'm sure many on this forum do. They have implemented compression testing and any bat that tests below 150 will not receive a "sticker" certifying the bat is legal to use in games. At the moment, once a bat is tested it doesn't need to be tested again but it's a start and they are trying. If a batter comes to the plate with a bat that does not have a sticker they are to be called out on the spot, not after they hit.

It's been interesting to see what the different manufacturer's bats test "out of the wrapper."

My observation is the number of 350'+ HR's has decreased dramatically.

Separate comment: FHC has somehow found a way to supply Tatoo balls to ~200 teams each month. Go figure...


July 13, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Foul Tip

I haven't heard the term "uncatchable" before but I think I understand your intent. If ruled a "foul tip," the ball is dead immediately and if the final strike, the batter is called out. The fact the catcher does/does not catch the ball is irrelevant.

If the ball is over the batter's head, and legally caught by the catcher, the batter is out on the catch regardless of the count and the ball is live (i.e. runners can advance).


July 2, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Softballs

The 44/400 balls that we used recently are really challenging. The HR's were down dramatically across all divisions. Yes, everybody hits the same balls but we normally hit 3-6 a game and we didn't hit 1/game in our last tournament. The wind was blowing so there was some impact there too.

It would be great to not have to use the Gold Dot Extreme (44/400) ball ever again. Hopefully the supply chain challenges break free sometime soon.

Many of our guys started swinging ASA bats vs. senior bats as they had better performance with these balls.
June 25, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Great call by a manager!!!

If the manager "appealed" after the first pitch, the correct batter would assume the current count and replace the illegal batter. There is no out for batting out of order until after the at-bat is completed by the batter but before a pitch is thrown to the subsequent batter.


May 10, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Ball Being Used in Reno?

That's great news Dave. The Tattoo is much more durable IMO.
May 9, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Ball Being Used in Reno?

Not sure why SSUSA doesn't consider the Tattoo. FHC seems able to get 36 dozen or more every month without any problems.
May 9, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Ball Being Used in Reno?

The Worth ball used at the Brickyard was a piece of crap. Mamy guys switched to ASA bats as the balls used were intended for ASA bats. Using a senior bat was like hitting a pillow. There were HRs but the numbers were way down.
May 5, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: You make the call

I assume the ball was not caught based on your scenario. Because the runners obviously reacted to the catcher's voice, I would call obstruction and award all runner's one base. This type of obstruction happens somewhat frequently in our league. Fielders call foul ball on a ball that is fair, etc.
April 2, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: website

Yes, it is extremely slow to load and sometimes it will time out depending on the ISP. Has always been that way and is independent of the device I use to access the site.
March 31, 2022
DirkPitt
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Batting out of order

T2, your scenario sounds valid but the SSUSA ITB rule is very clear and says the last batter to complete their AB in the prior inning must be the one to assume the position at 2B. Nothing else matters as the rule states. If you're playing by SSUSA rules and that exact batter is not available for any reason, an out is recorded and the next batter to complete their AB assumes the position at 2B. I've pasted in the text from the actual rule below 5.4(2). Also, it doesn't matter who made the last out, it's the last batter to have completed their AB in SSUSA.

"EFFECT: If the last batter of the previous inning cannot continue to play because of injury, illness, etc., he will be declared out and the next previous batter will be the tie-breaker runner."


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