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Discussion: Pitchers safety

Posted Discussion
Aug. 20

1 posts
I am New to this messsageboard. But have been playing tournament softball for 35 + years. I have also umpired for 12 years. My concern is the safety of pitchers in the age of HOT senior bats and rock hard softballs we have done very little to protect pitchers and reduce the desire of some players and Team philosophy’s of “ shooting the middle “ Yes this is part of the game, but it is Reckless,Dangerous and detrimental to the game. I witnessed this , this past weekend in an SPA tournament Several pitchers who were hit with line drive rockets up the middle. Players and Teams that perpetuate the type of play have to be put in check. We are all fathers, brothers and friends who have loved ones , family and jobs that are waiting for us on Mondays when we return home.
The changes I would like to be made would be if a pitcher is hit with a line above the knees on any part of the torso the batter should be out and removed from game and serve a one game suspension. If the same player has a second offense against a pitcher in the same calendar year that player will receive a 1 year suspension from all tournament play. All of us who play the game at this level have the ability to make adjustments to their game for the betterment and safety of game we are all fortunate to be playing at our age. For those of you who have never stood in the pitchers box and had 100+ MPH softball hit back at you , you probably don’t give a damn! But that could someday be your brother, friend or teammate that could lying on the field with a life altering injury. Think before you swing. You are standing there with a lethal weapon in your hands.

Stay safe my Brothers and keeping on playing.

Aug. 20
Fred S
Men's 85
297 posts
Ego's will always trump safety.
Aug. 20
Nancy Allen
Men's 55
1438 posts
Enzo19, at least SSUSA requires face protection and recommends other protective gear. Not all associations do that like you saw last weekend. I have to disagree on the batter hitting the middle though. I have seen too many times that with 2 strikes that the pitcher may throw a pitch to the outside, and those almost always go right back where they come from. Coachie ended up with stitches like that, and it was a friend of his that went for that pitch rather than taking strike 3. The flat pitch is also a little riskier of going back at the pitcher. I have never in senior softball heard anyone say anything that led me to believe that they intentionally hit the middle. Believe me I have heard young guys talk about buzzing the tower or watching your Chiclets or other sayings. I have never heard anything like that in senior softball. I also remember when SSUSA had a rule on the pitcher being hit, and I had it happen in a game which caused a dead ball situation, and he was mad because he thought that was making him just a stand there and look pretty field ornament rather than a defensive player and taking away his ability to make a double play. I understood what he meant. I would never pitch because I know that that I could not adequately protect myself or get the out. I do remember looking at statistics years ago, and most pitchers that got killed had it happen during batting practice probably because they are really comfortable and not in defensive mode, and batters hit pitches that they never would in a game situation. I also do not like the screen for pitchers that play tournaments because I think that they might have developed a false sense of safety or just forget that the screen is not there during tournament play.
Aug. 20
Mr. Nick
Men's 55
44 posts
Enzo 19, well said. I have been pitching for the last 4 years and have been hit several times. I understand it comes with the territory when pitching. Recently I almost got drilled in the head. The batter immediately apologized and I was fine with it. However, when the next batter got up, players in the other dugout were yelling go middle. I immediately voiced my opinion to the other team. Fortunately it did not require involvement of the umpire.
Aug. 20

515 posts
I have been pitching for over 30 years
I agree that people should not try to hit the pitcher, but if they do, its all part of softball.
And yes I have been hit just about everywhere that you can be hit at one time or another.
I have NEVER say a word to any player that hits the middle whether it hits me or just comes close. I have a glove and its part of the game. If I catch enough of them, they stop hitting the middle.
If your are worried about getting hit as a pitcher, don't pitch. Its that simple.
We play with a net in league and it actually hurts me when I play in tournaments. I get used to stepping left and not trying to catch anything.
If anything is dangerous, it is the rubbers that stick up 2-3 inches over the dirt.
Get rid of them and pitching would be a lot safer.
Just my 2 cents worth.
TN Connection 55
and btw, I wear a mask and am thankful SSUSA makes us were it. It saved me last year in Vegas
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