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Discussion: National Rules Voting

Posted Discussion
Jan. 13, 2023
Men's 60
144 posts
National Rules Voting
There were 12 members present and an alternate. Each topic received 11 votes (with some abstaining votes / yet the total was 12). Can it be disclosed which one of the 12 members' did not participate in the voting process?
Jan. 13, 2023
3446 posts
Nope, all 11 member seats voted every time ... But it CAN be easily explained because the Chair (Donna McGuire) only votes to break a tie by the committee membership ... With only 11 members able to attend this year, that reduced her chances to only if there was a 5-5-1 (abstaining) tally ... That didn't happen ... The alternate did step in to cover a regular member who had to leave the meetings for an hour or so to attend to personal business ...

Jan. 15, 2023
Men's 65
487 posts
Is there further clarification available on rule change No. 6, specifically as it relates to M+ team who may play in a M division due to lack of M+ teams?

6. Major Plus player boundaries
Motion to allow Major Plus teams (aged 40+ through 70+) to have two players from the
opposite side of the Mississippi River from their home state without giving an equalizer
(and being required to compete as an Open Division team).
MOTION PASSED: 6-5 (1 abstaining)
Jan. 15, 2023
60 posts
The Major Plus player boundaries change is going to hurt the participation in Major Plus even more. There are not many teams with the sponsorship mo ey to pick up players from out 9f a team's region, as it is. So the few teams with deep pockets, who can afford the best players, year in and year out, can c9ntinue to flex their financial power to add the best players in the country. The people on the board have it all backwards. The more regionalized teams are force to be, the more parity there is. The more teams can move up and compete. Major Plus participation will continue to dwindle.
40 M+ Southwest Championships have 4-5 teams the last couple of years.
50M+ had 2 last year, with one playing 40 Major instead of spotting runs to every team they play.

World Championship participation in these classes are falling off too.

California this year will have 1 40 M+ team and 1 50M+ team at worlds.

They should have gone the other way back to only 2 Non-bordering state players from the same side of the Mississippi.

Instead they carry to the few deep pocket s0onsors that pay players, which is against SSUSA rules, but they can't prove it, so "it doesn't happen".

Look for lots of teams breaking up to move back down.
Jan. 16, 2023
Men's 55
289 posts
I disagree SS11

Every year Major teams that get bumped up find a way to go back down to Major anyway. If they are forced, they adjust their roster so that they are major again. Very few teams get bumped to Major Plus and stay Major Plus because they find a ton of excuses.

I believe this will help those bubble Major/Major Plus teams stay in major plus because now they can add two players on the opposite side of the river. For some reason it's not about competing anymore it's just if my team can't win a major plus tournament then we fight to remain major.

Sponsors are at every level of softball not just Major Plus. Many players at all levels enjoy sponsorship $$ or merchandise.

The Major Plus division has always been considered a different animal and many choose not to play in that division. Why does it matter now if the new rule only affects Major Plus?

I commend SSUSA for looking at other organizations and trying to keep the Major Plus division consistent. I hardly think any Major Plus teams will complain about the new rule and if they do their team will find a way to drop to major I'm sure.

Jan. 16, 2023
60 posts
There are fewer sponsors in the game today than there were 4 years ago. Costs are greater for travel, lodging, etc.. Not every team at Major Plus has sponsorship, and even more of the Major teams lack sponsorship.

When SSUSA caved to the sponsors and increased the number of non-bordering players (same side of Mississippi) from 2 to 4, that began benefiting the larger sponsorship teams, as they have the $$$ to bring additional TOP level players to that would otherwise end up on a local team. So those top players end up on a local team, that means 1 or 2 guys on that team, may decide to play with a top Major team who now is good enough to play Major +.

Any rule that affects "ONLY Major +" ultimately affects the major division as well. The greater the difference between Major + and Major, the fewer opportunities the Major Plus teams have to play. When you allow Major Plus teams to add more out of region players, those teams improve even more (or they wouldn't pay to bring in someone), and then when those teams try to play local. Major teams (with the equalizer) realize they can't compete, and decide to not play. Then the Major Plus have nowhere to play all year.

It is understandable that everyone wants to win worlds. Explain why the original rule of 2 players from Non-bordering states, but same side of Mississippi, is worse for parity in the game? Not all the teams that contend, have Suncoast, JK, Somerville (a great sponsor not in the game anymore?), Deluxe Bakery, FBI, Kelleher, etc. type money and without that money, attracting those player is almost impossible.
Jan. 16, 2023
Men's 55
289 posts

You have valid points but most guys playing major plus I believe would rather find a major plus team on either side of the Mississippi River rather than play on a major team. SSUSA recognized that you should not be penalized by giving an equalizer just because you have one or two players on the opposite side of the river. The rule did not read into anything else, but just not giving an equalizer and reclassifying Open teams back to major plus.

Will it make major plus teams stronger. Probably. Major plus teams will still have to play major rules if there are no major plus teams in a tournament to play. I have not yet seen a major plus team not play because they have to play major rules. I don't think major plus teams like it, but they still play.

The bottom line is guys want to play where they want to play and with who they want to play at the major plus level. So allowing 2 more guys on the opposite side of the river makes it available to those guys who have no local major plus team to play on. No player or team should be penalized because their teammates are capable of playing major plus. The equalizer of 5 runs made no sense at the highest level. Every major plus team has the opportunity to get better.

Right now in 55's and 60's there are several very good major plus teams.

You mentioned a few good sponsors. There is one currently that is better than all of those.
Good luck this year.
Jan. 16, 2023
60 posts
The issue isn't Major Plus teams not wanting to play Major rules with an equalizer. It is Major teams refusing to play against Stacked Major Plus teams even when getting the equalizer. Especially when paying $600-800 to play.

I guess my point is, the old rules brought more parity, and the Major Plus levels can not afford to lose any more teams, which I think will happen. World's will show.
Jan. 16, 2023
60 posts
Best of luck this year, Benji!
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