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Discussion: Bat/ball combos of yesteryear

Posted Discussion
March 8, 2013
Webbie25
Men's 60
1952 posts
Bat/ball combos of yesteryear
Ok- you are both right in some ways.
Tim-1982-1984 we were using Howards bats and equivalent, but those three years we used the T4000, Hot Dots, TN Poly softballs and they were flying 400 feet.
Before that the Poly Core Blue Dot ruled. I never heard what the cor and compression were, but we were playing 65-57 games playing with Shallow Waterbeds out of Lubbock. In 1985 I think it was they came out with the Gold Dots, RF 80 softballs that went nowhere and HR's went down a ton. The first bat I saw that had amazing pop was the Demarini Ultimate Weapon-I still have 5 broken ones in the garage. They even put your name on the early ones. They were C405 I think. Then came the CU31 single walls and then they went to double walls. The balls came down from 50 cor to 47's and then to 44's which is where they are for us now. But we still hit the 50's a long way with the demarini's.
I have gotten my Steeles bat out and cannot get it out of the park, but the balls are SO much softer it makes a huge difference. I have almost hit the warning track and think it was a pretty good shot.
My memories are not perfect, but this is my recollection of the advance of the BAT! Corrections accepted with a smile!
March 8, 2013
taits
Men's 65
4304 posts
I believe the CU31 came before the C405. Before the Cu31 were the 7000 series bats.
I still use a C405P in cold weather BP. The list is a lot longer.
Super duper 'dots were Worth's best balls. Some time later they had a 9030 ball that was really good too. I still have some of both of those.
The lessor balls list was endless but the Dudley SB12LND were in there. That is what we used here in league. Still have about a doz of them too.
March 8, 2013
usmc0311
32 posts
i want to take tim up on his 200 dollar bet!
March 8, 2013
JamesLG
296 posts

1973, We used the day/night Dudly and they were soft and out of round by the 4th inning. I believe that was right about the time the Bombat arrived on the scene. The Mag Bat was a little later but it was a dud. Somebody came out with a bat that had stripes that was not bad if you could find the sweet spot. In the late 70's some of our big hitters used a bat that looked like a fungo that I believe we call the Thumper. It was a load to swing.
When the balls took a big dump in the late 70's I stopped playing with the big boys because at 150lbs I just could not hit that ball anywhere. When the worth Blue and red dots came out I started playing with the better teams again.
Thanks:
James
March 8, 2013
swing for the fences
Men's 50
980 posts
Webbie, great post and for those who have CRS, this is exactly what I am talking about when we were playing in the 80s and 90s... we were hitting Blue dots in leagues and Sky-hawks Blue stitch in Tourney..
March 9, 2013
ju25
Men's 55
139 posts
We used HARWOOD BALLS here in Michigan and those balls were lopsided by the 2nd or 3rd inning. Back then we were using 34-38oz. bats and the hitter had to do the work, not the bat or ball. When singlewall bats came out balls would fly when you hit that tiny sweetspot, then came doublewalls, balls flying further more often because of the bigger sweetspot and the trampoline effect of the 2 walls. Nowadays with the composite bats the sweetspot is practically the entire barrel and the bat compresses more than the ball does, which results in greater distance more often. When the first Ultra came out it was advertised as adding 50' to your swing and this was no lie. Witnessed an original Ultra outhit a Bobby Buggs PST by atleast 50'. Technology is here to stay, so just live with it an be thankful that we are still able to play this game we have loved all our life.
March 9, 2013
DD
Men's 60
71 posts
I remember when the game first began we didn't use any balls. We had burlap sacks from the produce market and we stuffed them with rags. Each sack would last about 2 innings, almost as long as an SSUSA 60 major plus game lasts today. Then we'd replace the sack with another.

The sacks became all bent and battered and didn't roll well or bounce true...until one day old Peterson came up with the idea of a round ball...and THAT was a breakthrough idea that is still in use today. Peterson would be proud.

We used a broom handle one of the guys sawed in half---presto!!, two bats!! The heat from all that sawing created the first "hot" bat...and boy that really caught on, too.

It was very efficient back then because the old unusable ragsacks were then converted to mitts for the fielders, thereby reducing many broken fingers and bruised palms, for once round balls and hot bats were adopted players could hit harder and farther.

Of course, in those days gentlemen played at the highest level possible. It was a matter of personal pride to play the best players around...then one day after a huge flood some of the guys were removing the sandbags used to hold back the water and one got the idea, "Hey if I tell everyone I can't play very well, maybe they'll let me play at a lower level and I'll pick up an easy t-shirt...then I'll be long gone before those suckers figure it out---with the t-shirt, of course. Oh yeah, I got the t-shirt"

Thus, sandbagging was born. Those of us who've been around the game for a lifetime remember the good old days. Some of the newer guys may not know. I like to share such things.
March 9, 2013
Tim Millette
476 posts
Hey Marine, are you playing out west this year?
If your going to be at the western nationals in NorCal...I will be glad to bring out my bats
March 10, 2013
usmc0311
32 posts
Tim i will not be coming that far west. But i will be in Vegas Oct 3! if your gonna be there we can have a little fun. Let me know
March 10, 2013
Tim Millette
476 posts
USMC, unless the air prices for St Louis come down some, we will probably be in Vegas.
I will bring the "player" bat given to me buy Al White that was traveling back easy to play major ball.
It's a red worth, concentrated barrel,35 ounces.....which I swung most of the time from 81-84?
If you active.....I'll give you a 50% discount....if your retired...$25
March 10, 2013
southpaw
Men's 60
729 posts
DD, in the 50's, our first baseballs were green walnuts wrapped in black tape. We whittled our bats out of tree limbs. This was in "outback" Alabama. The balls would last about half the summer.
March 10, 2013
big cat7
Men's 50
95 posts
I agree i think the cu31 was before the 405, i had a worth cu31 end load it was black and gold it was an awesome bat and then went to the green ritches bat that was also a great bat.I remember back in the late seventies or maybe early eighties Jay smith had played in the pro leagues and he got ahold of a few brand new steele bats they were silver with brown at the top. that was the first real hot bat i had ever used for back in those days.The worth blue dot was a great utrip ball and the dudley thunder a great asa ball
March 10, 2013
usmc0311
32 posts
Tim i dont know who Al White is or what a player bat was back then. i was playing at camp Lejeune in Marine tournys in the 80s. I will pay the 25. bring what ever bats you want. ill enjoy the challenge trying to take 200 dollars off a former major player and the guy who is testing the senior tps bat. im just a z leaguer trying to be good at this 50 stuff lol
March 10, 2013
ju25
Men's 55
139 posts
CU31 came first, C405's were introduced in 1996.
March 10, 2013
swing for the fences
Men's 50
980 posts
I remember swinging a 38 ounce silver Easton with some purple bands.. I hit a bunch of bombs with that bat and Blue dots..
March 10, 2013
Tim Millette
476 posts
Usmc..... I have never been a big shot in softball...

I was a below average all around player that happened to be able to spin balls 20 feet over the fence.

If you get together and you don't want to shoot for the $200 there is I fee.
In all honesty....I do not believe there is a senior capable of hitting a ball out of 300 with my early 80s bats.
March 11, 2013
tekdad
21 posts
USMC,
Being a former service man myself , I must warn you . Many great hitters have come out of NorCal and even though we have had our differences at times , I must say that Tim along with Rev are probably two of the best right handed hitters to come out NorCal. Tim never really had the physical gifts of others but he worked hard at the game . He defined spinning the ball , a term I hear from many even the younger generation. I bet they don't have a clue where it came from .. Lol Tim is truly a pioneer of the game up here and probably the most " technical" or fundamental hitter around ... Thanks for your device and good luck this year ... Troy
March 11, 2013
tekdad
21 posts
Service
March 11, 2013
swing for the fences
Men's 50
980 posts
Tim, what balls are you going to let him hit????? SB-12 or a 525 50 core?????
March 11, 2013
Bigon
11 posts
510 Bombat and bluedot or red stitch dudley thunder balls,just as good as senior bats and balls now,but we were 30 years younger.
March 11, 2013
the answer
Men's 55
104 posts
anyone ever play with a steel core ball..I think it was a t-2000 from the early 1980s..didnt matter what bat you used..it was like a golf ball and it had a warning stamped on the ball too
March 11, 2013
swing for the fences
Men's 50
980 posts
Bigon, I don't know about you, but I have hit balls with metal bats in the last couple of years that went just as far as stuff I was hitting in my 30s.... Just, some can't understand that they dumb down the balls to keep these bats under control. Now if you were going to say we could hit 50core 525s like they first started in SS with Senior bats then I would agree with everyone that are complaining they are too hot... Biggest thing I see is the size of the sweet spot. Which makes it easier to mishit one out. IMO
March 11, 2013
Bigon
11 posts
Swing,,, your correct the size of the sweet spot is bigger on senior bats. Miss hit balls do carry out for homeruns ,,but when everything is perfect it just keeps going and going till it looks like a bb.
March 12, 2013
Tim Millette
476 posts
Thanks for the nice words Troy.

As far as the old aluminum days....

Here are some examples...

1987 Steeles team (arguable best softball team ever assembled) comes to Concord... We play them...field one willow pass park.
They supplied the balls (the hardest rocks I ever hit)...on a 300 foot fence we lose 13-12 in extra innings.

1988 Steeles barnstorms NorCal again......this time the game is at city park in Burlingame...baseball field...around 335 down the lines...one home run is hit by Andy Alvis from NorCal.... in the entire game.

1989....first AA World ever played. It's on a baseball field in cocoa Florida....temp fences at 325.....our team comes in fourth....five games played...home run leader on our team....four home runs. Our elimination game score 8-7

1991 AA world....San Clemente ca 300 foot field....our team goes undefeated 5-0...championship game score 13-11.... Semi final game score 7-2....both games played with win blowing in from right field....four home runs hit in two game...one each by Gary Robertson/left hander to right field, Rich Courtney, Dave Feather and Jeff Peterson/left hander to

1991 Major World Series.....baseball field ...Daytona beach? We come in fourth....temp fences at 350/left center to right center, 325 down the lines...we lose our final game to Riches Superior (arguable the other best team ever assembled) final score 12-11? Two home runs hit in the game

1991 ASA Super...our team plays Riches superior....little rock ak...baseball field....temp fence left center to right center...330...... We win....10-7? One home run hit in game...our player Dave Feather

1992 Major World Series....Florida...baseball field, no temp fence....if I
remember correctly one left handed player hit more then one home run over the weekend/Jeff Peterson...he turned down playing for Steeles and Bell Corp after the tourney...

I could go on with more examples but....I think I have more then proven my point with actual game examples.....now maybe Swing and all those others that proclaim 400 foot power were over looked by those big money major teams....but as I have said.....in my experience there were only a couple handful of elites each season that from 1980 till the early/mid 90s were capable of hitting a softball 400 feet without wind/high elevation...
March 12, 2013
swing for the fences
Men's 50
980 posts
Well Tim, I remember playing in State tourney with Greg Serna and myself with a fence 345 to center... We were swinging single walls and both put one into the parking lot... We had a little breeze that day!;-) Also, Moise hit one at Kimble in the City with a single wall bat and blue dot in left center that hit a across the street.. the fence is 365 and 20 feet tall building.. 400 feet plus.. this was in early 90s... I could go on and on with guys who were hitting the ball well over 350 ft with single wall bats.. Did they happen all the time, no, but the ball nutted back then with the 50 core 525 comp would go if you did!
March 12, 2013
swing for the fences
Men's 50
980 posts
meant to say he hit a building across the street from a 20 ft high fence and 365 to that fence...
March 13, 2013
softball4b
Men's 60
719 posts

1989....first AA World ever played. It's on a baseball field in cocoa Florida....temp fences at 325.....our team comes in fourth....five games played...home run leader on our team....four home runs. Our elimination game score 8-7

Hot HUMID...Game against GA,my previous team before moving to CA. I asked the Ump if we had used up all of the HR hitters he said we had one left. I hit a HR and it was an out we had already hit 7 HRs with 5 other hitters. I think we hit 9 consecutive balls at the 2nd baseman.

1991 ASA Super...our team plays Riches superior....little rock ak...baseball field....temp fence left center to right center...330...... We win....10-7? One home run hit in game...our player Dave Feather

Yeah but in the next game we played a ball was hit to right center, 385' 6 panels up. The only question was whether or not it was going to hit on the freeway. Arkansas was hard to hit for anyone that weekend.
March 13, 2013
Tim Millette
476 posts
Mike,

Kim Seasem's ball off Waverly wall? to dead right/not rightcenter was one of the most expressive balls hit that weekend.

I don't think it was 385 to the fence/maybe 330...that fence was 60 feet tall because it it was short for a minor league field because of the roadway behind it.

Our elimination game at the 89 AA was against Budweiser from California. We were ahead 7-3 going into the bottom of the last inning....it started raining/more like a down pour...Our Pitcher walked five guys.
March 13, 2013
softball4b
Men's 60
719 posts
All I remember for sure was the umpire had to be 6'7" and had a tude.

I remember the rain. Could not believe we kept playing.
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