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June 5, 2007
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Miller's - Charlie passed away and Senior Softball has lost a great man!

Almost everyone who has played softball has probably played against a Millers (Michigan) team at one time or another. It may never happen again, as Charles 'Charlie' Miller passed away on May 31st. Charlie was 71. He and the Miller's 70 were last seen at the Lansing tournament a few weeks ago.

Charlie is in at least one Hall-of-Fame as a sponsor, and has been sponsoring teams for at least the last 35 years. I first played against Miller's when I began playing senior ball in the 60 age group. After five years playing against him, I was fortunate to be asked to join his team when he moved to the 65 division. For a few years he had both a 60 and 65 team.

So for five years I had the 'privilege' to be a Miller's player. During that time we only won 160 tournament games while losing 179. Some may consider that as not very good. But the 60+ players who wore the Miller's uniform during those five years will tell you differently.

Charlie was great friends with Ken Maas, and the team winning the AA World Series in Palm Springs in 2006 would probably be rated as his biggest thrill. I only wish he had been there to enjoy it. Where was he? He was back in Michigan working (at age 70), so he could pay for another tournament.

Charlie just loved the University of Michigan, which was probably obvious to anyone who saw the Maize & Blue uniforms with the Miller's in the same style as the Michigan on the University's uniforms.

So Ridge, Terry and Greg have lost one of the people who has meant a great, great deal to Senior Softball. There may never be another one like him.

Everyone who knew Charlie knows exactly what I mean when I say 'we have all lost a good friend.'

I was lucky to have had the opportunity to play for him. If you did not, you missed something and someone special.

God Bless Charlie Miller!
Sept. 12, 2006
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: 50 MAJOR PUS results from SEATTLE.

When you have to explain what your words mean, I think it time to stop using them. Who do you think you are, Einstein? Ooops, you are.
Sept. 10, 2006
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: SPA Plano 65 AA

Blue, I certainly hope you know that no ‘bashing’ was ever intended in my post. I’m a Huntsman Ambassador and a member of the Senior Softball Advisory Board and I take all senior softball, associations, teams and players very seriously.

What I meant with the post is that ‘I’ would have done it different. SPA met and picked its punishment. Therefore, you could accept this AND still voice your opposition and you could have done this without the forfeit. I believe SPA knew that the rule was not what was fully intended. I would have liked to see you play the game.

Miller’s is not a team with no track record. In AAA last year they were 23 & 43, and did not win one game in the Eastern Nationals, SPA Nationals or SSUSA (Phoenix) Nationals in elimination play. That means they were the first team out of these events. They were re-rated to AA and entered Plano with a 14 & 24 record. I know Midwest was re-rated to AA on Aug 17th, just one week before the tournament, so I can see you coming in with good expectations. So did Miller’s.

But it was not the 72 year old that made the difference. It was 14 guys, some having the tournament of their life that made this so special for Miller’s. The 70 year old (different one) who was the MVP of the tournament entered with a .417 average and made one out in the entire tournament. He like many others has been on the Miller’s team all five years that they have been in the 65’s.

Did you think to check your roster after Midwest was re-rated to AA to be certain that all of the players were still qualified? The rule is wrong and I will do all in my power to convince the Summit in January 2007 of that fact.

I’m sorry if I offended, it was not my intent.

Sept. 10, 2006
Number 13
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: On the right track

Sorry, I was misled by coach 18 guys item. And, yes I would allow you to play that way against me. I would, however, feel bad if some of your guys only got to play on field and not get to hit.

And, since you said nothing about the travel costs etc part being wrong, I hope you can always play that way. When I go to 70’s next year I will probably have to cut down from 12-16 tournaments because of cost, not because I have lost desire or skill.

I don’t even want to go near the ‘I play on a number of teams, all different compositions and levels’ item. That opens a can of worms I want to avoid.

Back home I play M&W morn 65+ games, T&T morn 55+ double headers and I get 65-80 tournament weekend games. But it is the travel (and resulting good times) that makes it work. And I find it very difficult to get players to travel and not expect to play 100% of the time. I 65+ and up you need more than 13 for injury protection. So if you want them to return, you had better play them.

Sept. 8, 2006
Number 13
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: On the right track

einstein, alt innings was not an alternative to platooning, just another thing to think about for making things better by getting more games to 7 innings. This get more time for more people to play. Other than top of first and bottom of seventh, you bat two innings every time you come in.

I can see we come from two different schools, but think we can disagree and still respect each other. Hope to meet you some day. I'll be in Palm Springs, and Mesquite and St. George.

Let me guess a little bit. You are younger and would always be one of the 10 who would hit. You and your teammates probably don't pay your own travel and lodging costs. That is the only way you could always get 18 players.

This is the fifth year for my 65 team. We are from midwest, you probably Florida or Calif. We play 65-80 tournament games a year, You probably play more. We play AAA/AA, you, no doubt Major/Major+.

We play because we love the game and you play for Championships. Let me say that our AA championship in Plano last month probablymeans more to me than any your mean to you.

And using our bat everyone (14) approach we our 14th hitter go 14 for 15 and our number 2 hitter go 16/18. In six games no player made more than six outs. And, we had 14 very happy players.

When you pay all your own expenses you want to bat as often as the rest of the guys, for the most part, you want to be in field a good number of innings. And while it may take a 24 man roster to get 14 to most tournaments, everyone knows that if he comes he plays. Some of us have one or two new knees and/or hips. Some have pacemakers and defibulators. I would not trade what we have.

I believe the existance of senior softball is more geared for us than it is you. We need alot of guys like you, but senior softball will only be available to you at age 70 because the organzations gear more toward us and our approach today.

Sept. 8, 2006
Number 13
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: On the right track

Let’s also think of alternating innings.

Let visitors bat in first, then home bat in first, clear bases after third out and bat in second. Then change. Keep doing this and the hammer in the seventh still holds for home team. We did this in NY years ago and took 10-15 minutes off of game times. With the run limits, some times 5 or 6 guys bat and it is time to change places. So I can’t see anyone getting too tired.

This eliminates 6 times the teams would change in a seven inning game. At 2 minutes per change, 12 minutes could be saved. It works!

What do you think einstein?
Sept. 8, 2006
Number 13
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: "platooniquette"

Let’s also think of alternating innings.

Let visitors bat in first, then home bat in first, clear bases after third out and bat in second. Then change. Keep doing this and the hammer in the seventh still holds for home team. We did this in NY years ago and took 10-15 minutes off of game times. With the run limits, some times 5 or 6 guys bat and it is time to change places. So I can’t see anyone getting too tired.

This eliminates 6 times the teams would change in a seven inning game. At 2 minutes per change, 12 minutes could be saved. It works!

What do you think einstein?
Sept. 8, 2006
Number 13
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: On the right track

We should be so lucky as to have 15 of our roster at any tournament. But if we did - all would bat in round robin unless asking not to. In elim play, it may bepend on rule about injury. We may have someone sit for that reason only. But we all pay to travel - so we all play. Sometimes it is nice to have a few who love to be there and just be an AH/DH.

We hate when a tournament limits the number of hitter. We believe it is contrary to senior softball concept.

Let's ALL play!
Sept. 8, 2006
Number 13
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: New SPA rule on playing down?

Playdown causes a can of worms! (see discussion under SPA Plano 65 AA in tournaments).

This new 2006 rule has led to a problem for at least one team. A 72 year old played on two AAA teams in 2005. The 65 team went 0-5 in Phoenix. This year he again was on the two AAA teams 65 & 70, because his 70 team did not go to many tournaments. He played with 65’s in Indianapolis (again 0-5).

He also traveled with this team to Plano, paying his flight, room & food. Prior to the championship game he was informed he could no longer play on the team. Because of re-ratings the 70 team was rated higher than his 65 team. He was not allowed to receive the champions watch, or any of the other awards he would have qualified for.

I believe this rule should not penalize existing rosters and should only affect add-ons. And I think a lower rated team in a younger age group should also be allowed to have a player who’s older team may be higher rated.. But it is a re-rating on a team that had this player. It is a ‘team’ rating. It should not force a team to ‘drop’ a loyal teammate and friend.

Sept. 7, 2006
Number 13
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: On the right track

We bat all 14 guys. 5 outfielders - rotates. 4 infielders - one rotates. Two 1st basemen and catchers they rotate. The pitcher comes out if hit hard but goes to outfield to replace his replacement in the rotation.

Are we rotating or platooning? In 100 degree Texas heat it all that makes sense! Senior softball is all about everyone who travels should be in the lineup. There should be no out for injured player except first ab after injury. Let's keep everyone in the game
Sept. 7, 2006
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: SPA Plano 65 AA

New SPA Rule! It appears that the ‘new’ SPA rule about playing down may have been a ‘cause’ and not a ‘cure’ for a problem. The Miller’s 72 year old was on the roster in 2005. He was again on the roster in 2006 from the first tournament played in May in Indianapolis. He loves to play ball and his 70 team does not go to that many tournaments.

The Miller’s roster was valid at all of its earlier tournaments. Both teams were rated the same so there was no playing down. When a re-rating occurred, I’m sure, no one even considered the fact that it could have made an existing roster invalid.

I believe even SPA had not foreseen the potential problem the new rule might cause. In the midwest it is tough enough to fill a roster with all Major or AAA or AA players, let alone trying to keep different rosters for different organizations. I’m sure that not every player on a Major team is a Major player. Not every player on a AAA team is a AAA player. And, not every player on a AA team is a AA player. That is why it is called a TEAM rating

The SUMMIT needs to address this situation at its January 2007 meeting in Las Vegas. And let’s try to get a consistent rule so a team can use one roster to cover multiple associations.

I believe the real intent of the rule was designed for ‘roster additions’ made to the qualifying roster – not to penalize a team which had followed all rules while putting together its original roster.

Remember this 72 year old paid his own way to the tournaments, this includes flying to more than one national tournament and paying lodging expenses, etc. He, like many other AAA & AA players, may have even contributed to the tournament expenses. Should the re-rating of a team during the season have forced this team to tell a player he was no longer a part of the team? I believe that no rule should ever put a team in that position, be it SPA, SSWS or SSUSA.

Sept. 5, 2006
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: SPA Plano 65 AA

WOW! Facts sure get different when they serve a purpose. Regarding the 6 foot 4, 230 pound 1st baseman who walked next to the person complaining. FACT: The 72 year old player in question has been on the Miller team for a long time (all of this year), including when Miller’s went 0 and 5 in Phoenix last year and 0 and 5 when Miller’s played in Indianapolis earlier this year. FACT: He is a 5 foot 10, 170 pound middle infielder. Fact: His 70 team and Miller’s were rated the same when the teams were formed this year. It seems that if a team is re-rated with that 70+ year old on the roster that they should not be put in a position where they have to tell a player he can no longer play on the team. FACT: The teams that Miller’s defeated in elimination play in Plano were Alamo City (re-rated to AA on Aug 17th), who Miller defeated 22-15, Scrap Iron Red (re-rated to AA in July 2006), who Miller defeated 9-6 and Midwest (re-rated to AA on Aug 17th) who Miller defeated 16-13 in the round robin. Sounds like they were all ‘good’ teams. The 22-7 Miller victory over the Midwest (the last two undefeated) team was the only game which was not close. So, if I was on the Midwest team, I sure would have wanted to go out of the tournament ‘on the field,’ rather than forfeit. I know there were Midwest players who wanted to play that game and they deserved that opportunity. I feel bad for those guys. Those who did not want to play took that opportunity from their ‘teammates’, and that is a shame.
Feb. 26, 2004
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: lvssa

Both 60's and 65's must choose only two of three Sept/Oct year end tourneys - that is poor planning.

Part of that could be solved see below

Am I right when I look at tournaments for end of year and see 60's dates are same for both SSWC and LVSSA ? And, am I also right when I see 65's dates are the same for LVSSA and Huntsman. Have not looked real close but it appears LVSSA could gain by putting 65's where they have 60's and 65's would be OK for all three. Seems a shame that both 60's and 65's will have to make a choice of which to play and which to skip.
Feb. 26, 2004
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: lvssa--uusas sept/oct tournaments

Henderson is great - Sunset Station is a super locals casino with some good eats. But I have a question on the dates.

Am I right when I look at tournaments for end of year and see 60's dates are same for both SSWC and LVSSA ? And, am I also right when I see 65's dates are the same for LVSSA and Huntsman. Have not looked real close but it appears LVSSA could gain by putting 65's where they have 60's and 65's would be OK for all three. Seems a shame that both 60's and 65's will have to make a choice of which to play and which to skip.
Feb. 26, 2004
Number 13
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Oct 2004

Am I right when I look at tournaments for end of year and see 60's dates are same for both SSWC and LVSSA ? And, am I also right when I see 65's dates are the same for LVSSA and Huntsman. Have not looked real close but it appears LVSSA could gain by putting 65's where they have 60's and 65's would be OK for all three. Seems a shame that both 60's and 65's will have to make a choice of which to play and which to skip.
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