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Discussion: New rule

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Dec. 7, 2013
JBTexas
Men's 65
262 posts
New rule
Anyone but me have a problem with the new face mask rule for pitchers that the summit just approved????
Dec. 7, 2013
Fred S
Men's 80
93 posts
I don't like it but on the other hand it is making me do something I should be doing anyway with those senior bats.
Dec. 7, 2013
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
They love to impose rules....

Wearing gear is smart however. I doubt too you will see any of the voters pitching, but do know of one TD in TX who does.
----
Regarding the HR rule they stopped at the 70+ division(s), what about the 75 & 80's, no restrictions ?
Dec. 7, 2013
obagain
Men's 50
56 posts
I would rather they do that then to restrict bats or make the balls worse.
The HR rule is a good one IMO.
Dec. 8, 2013
LP
294 posts
JBTexas i have a big problem with ssusa imposing this type of rule, i pitch and i dont like to wear a mask, my reason of thought is that if you don't have the defensive skill to play that position don't pitch. Looks like to me the liberal ideas of telling a person what equipment to wear ( wavier excluded) has entered the softball world.
Dec. 8, 2013
JBTexas
Men's 65
262 posts
Larry, problem I have is that it is harder seeing the ball with a facemask, I have better chance of getting hit with the mask then without. There are to many blind spots when using the mask. If you wear a mask you better use the rest of the safety equipment because now you are a real sitting duck.
Dec. 8, 2013
Adiktiv6
Men's 50
66 posts
I agree 100% with JBTexas & LP!!
Pitchers are already a "target" and making it the rule that a pitcher has to wear a mask makes them even more of one! Not a smart rule change! Having the pitchers sign a consent wavier seem to be working just fine! Why make pitching more of a risk by adding the mask to those who would rather not wear one?
What's going to happen when an infielder takes a bad hop to the face? Rule change....now all infielders have to wear masks? What happens when an infielder takes a bad hop to his sac? Rule change....all infielder now have to wear jocks and cups? We all know the risks, let us make the decisions to wear or not to wear protective gear!
Believe it or not, the now chanced "HR rule" protected the pitcher from hits up the middle....but, that's another subject....
Dec. 8, 2013
Adiktiv6
Men's 50
66 posts
oops...that should read "the now CHANGED HR rule"
Dec. 8, 2013
obagain
Men's 50
56 posts
I don't understand all the whining about the HR rule.
So if you cant hit a hr you are going to go middle?
If you want to hit more HR then play up, you get more HR and the pitchers are better able to handle fielding the position.
Dec. 8, 2013
mad dog
Men's 60
3938 posts
JB/larry..you have seen the one i wear(rip-it) right....it has great vision....if miss a ball its not b/c i couldn't see it b/c the mask block my view...also i haven't seen an increase of targeting by batters b/c i wear it....i think it is better to wear the mask then have some stupid screen in the middle of the field....

i also like the hr rules..if ya wanna hit them ..move up.....also your a cowardly POS if you have to hit middle b/c hrs are gone......
Dec. 8, 2013
Dbax
Men's 60
1283 posts
Just got home from Tucson tournament. Not one pitcher I talked to thought this was a good rule. Should be the pitchers choice. Why not require chest protection? A line drive to the heart will kill you. It's slow pitch. If the big studs cannot hit it somewhere else but up the middle, to keep it in the park, they are morons.
Why not go to an ASA bat if your HR limit is up?
SSUSA now like the state of California. They require helmets for m/c riders.
Dec. 9, 2013
PattyMac
96 posts
Bad Change, back to the pitchers having to pay for it. SSUSA knows that so thats the reason for the facemask.

I don't know many cowardly POS"s that hit up the middle. I also don't know anyone who hits at the pitcher. I know alot of guys who hit either side of the pitcher because it is a good place for hits. The amount of homeruns is not the issue it is the DBO's after the limit. Our team will look at the schedule and decide if we want to play these tournaments.

I will tell you it is a fact that more balls will be up the middle after the limits are gone.

Can anyone from SSUSA staff explain why the rule had to be changed??

PattyMac
Dec. 9, 2013
Omar Khayyam
1000 posts
It was predictable that this rule was coming. I pointed out two years ago with the requirement of mask and shin guards unless signing a waiver, that the waiver was useless. If SSUSA feels it is so dangerous with today's hot bats and balls for the pitcher to be unprotected, it would be easy for a lawyer to file a successful lawsuit in case of injury or death of a pitcher, waiver or not. I still predict we will see mandated screens before I stop playing.

As to hitting up the middle, I played two seasons with a nice guy who had hit middle all his life. To my knowledge, he never aimed for the pitcher, but liked the hole on either side of the pitcher and that's what he aimed for. Usually he was successful, and had a good batting average, but even so, he hit a pitcher about 3 times a year when the pitcher couldn't field the ball. I don't want to hit any pitcher that often.
Dec. 9, 2013
rightrj1
Men's 55
211 posts
The rule will make teams and pitchers chose if they want to play in SSUSA events....Our team has already decided to limit the tournaments sanctioned bye SSUSA to 2 0r 3 in 2014,as compare to the 6-10 we've played in the past....My experience has been, the more gear a pitcher wears, the more guys WON"T have a problem hitting the middle, they won't do it on purpose, but if they do, they won't feel bad cause he's wearing protection gear! IMO SSUSA should have done a players vote for this rule change or at least a survey...Once they see the $$$ going down, they'll change their thinking on this rule!
JBTexas makes a great point, the mask does limits your view of the ball coming off the bat....My question to SSUSA is, why would you even bring this rule into play? How many pitchers have complained that this was needed? I see more infielders getting hurt from bad hops from poor field conditions then pitchers getting hurt with balls hit up the middle....If you really want to protect pitcher, GET THE RUBBERS REMOVED FROM ALL fields, they are more dangerous then Hitters hitting the middle!
Dec. 9, 2013
Ho
231 posts
You can complain all you want to SSUSA and probably SPA and ISSA in ther near future about the FACE MASK RULE. But you will be barking up the wrong tree.

Due to the numerous injuries nationwide (I know, I know you haven't heard about them but the lawyers have), private and public softball complexes are the ones writing the rules.

If organizations wish to use their facilities, they HAVE TO or WILL SOON HAVE to adhere to the face mask rule...and you can bank on the screens are soon to follow.

So don't blame the senior organizations, they are only following the rules and protecting themselves.

Ho
Dec. 9, 2013
stick8
1300 posts
Does anyone remember the middle hitting rule from a couple years ago? That rule did not go over very well and I suspect this new pitching mask rule, while I'm sure will be given every opportunity to succeed, will meet the same fate.
Does anyone find a lot of pitchers wearing pitching masks in their travels to senior softball tournaments? Myself I see very very few.
Dec. 9, 2013
crusher
Men's 70
395 posts
S8, Yes.
65 and 70+.
These guys are a little wiser and have seen someone or been hit in the face.

If you get hit just once in your softball life in the face and 20 surgeries later you look almost normal then a face mask does not sound bad.

Note: Professional baseball players that are young and make many millions of dollars get hit.
Dec. 9, 2013
BogeyBert21
Men's 55
21 posts
When does it stop, first the mask, then shin guards, then chest protectors. IMO, wearing protective gear invites middle shots. I would rather perfect pitching from a longer distance than wear a mask...say 2nd base...
Dec. 9, 2013
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
It's about liability, not (just) safety. Sure it has something to do with it but current laws basically protect them but it only take one sympathic judge or arbitrator to get it to a jury.
If they can get by assumed or assumption of risk there is always Secondary assumption of risk. Either way its uphill. But you never know do you.
NCSSA voted down all the new rules for their assn. I think it was good on a personal level.
I still do not like the DBO for HR's Why punish them for a good hit. Sure keep in in the park or use a lessor bat to keep it is does work. But some guys just get lucky others never will get it out.
Wear the gear it could save ya.
Dec. 9, 2013
JDub
Men's 50
136 posts
I've been Pitching for many years, mainly U-Trip. I've been Blind in one eye since I was 12 and have had to adapt to various conditions in my short life (Sports, Driving, etc.). I was Drilled in the Head back in 2002 by the Original Gray Miken Ultra. I was "That Guy" responsible for "That Bat" getting Banned! It did not Deter me from Pitching, but it has definitely made me Gun-Shy. Everyone pretty much knows where I stand regarding today's Bat Technology, and especially . . . SENIOR BATS ARE STOOOPID ! ! !

Back to when I got Drilled, I did try a Helmet. I did not like the Helmet because it was too Floppy! I bought the Combat FaceOff Mask 2 years ago, tried it, but I don't like it either. This is an Awesome Mask, but it's actually a Hinderance (for me) and I'm definitely Not Comfortable being More Blind by wearing this Mask! I Obviously believe in Safety First, but we all know that living in such an Ego-Driven World that there is No Turning Back on Bat & Ball Technology! Everybody Digs the Long Ball . . . Not just the Chicks! Therefore, it appears I will be Forced from Pitching which I'm sure will make many Happy since I'm such an @$$ when I do get to Pitch (LOL) ! ! !


Have Fun, Be Safe,
Jeff White #7
AZ Elite 50M+
Dec. 9, 2013
garyheifner
361 posts
Gotta disagree that you can't see the ball. I have a mask and a helmet with a mask. I can see the ball off the bat clear as a bell. On rare occasion, if I get lazy and don't get my head down on a hard grounder, I might lose the ball in the bottom cage bars. The couple of shots I have taken in the mask or helmet have been bad hops off the front edge of the pitching rubber.
Dec. 9, 2013
Eurskine
Men's 50
61 posts
Gary...This is Eurskine,coach of the Monarchs.What type of mask do you have,and where did you get it?We are making some changes in our League play ,and i would like to get a good mask,so i can see the ball....and protect the old noggin.
Dec. 10, 2013
JBTexas
Men's 65
262 posts
GaryH, got to disagree with you. Glad you can see clear as a bell but how do you get hit that many times in the head if you can see, I've had my hand broken a couple of times stopping line drives but ever been hit it the head. If I can see it I'll get a glove on it, with a mask I can't see the ball 100% of the time. I know I'm fighting a losing battle I'll have to use a mask but I don't have to like it and I will get hit more often with it, some safety???
Dec. 10, 2013
PattyMac
96 posts
Again can someone from the SSUSA staff address WHY the rules have changed as it relates to the DBO rule after the homerun limit.

What or who does it hurt to have homeruns count as walks instead of outs?????

I haven't heard from one person who likes this change. WHY!!

I thought that this game was for the players!! WHY!!!

I am 61 years old, work out 5 days a week, hit twice a week and now have to work at hitting the ball down. WHY!!!!

If you are going the change the rules please respect us enough as players to give us the reasons WHY.

PattyMac
Dec. 10, 2013
southernson
261 posts
Have to wear a mask? Forced to wear a mask? If that's the case, I'm done, I will never pitch another SSUSA game if I have to wear a mask. The game I love has become too absurd mostly by non-players.
Dec. 10, 2013
Enviro-Vac
Men's 60
402 posts
Hockey players used to say the same about helmets. Today all wear helmets and have no problem with it even though a lot complained at first. It seems like a logical rule given our age & the speed of the ball back up the middle.
Dec. 10, 2013
Caveman
Men's 50
64 posts
I believe it should be a choice not a mandate. I do wear a helmet and mask, but that is my choice. I started using the Gameface mask and it did have some blind spots on ground balls when they got 4 feet or so from me. Switched to a batting helmet with wire face guard and that eliminated any blind spot. I suspect that any of the wire style masks would have the same effect.
Treacy Elliott
Dec. 10, 2013
400
Men's 50
79 posts
JDUB let's "face" it you always looked better with the mask on. Dave Niles LOL
Dec. 10, 2013
400
Men's 50
79 posts
Patty Mac I have always thought that the complete player, regardless of work out regimen, can hit the ball anywhere they want anytime they want. Perhaps some of the hitting time 2x a week should be focused on 5-6 and 3-4 holes. I think that all of us have played those teams that consistently hit line drives and base hits. I am glad that they are bringing the game back to its roots! A step in the right direction.
Dec. 10, 2013
PattyMac
96 posts
400,

I have always wanted to be te complete player. I usually hit the 5-6 when i mishit. I will say again i have not talked to anyone who thinks this is a step in the right direction. What is wrong with a 60 year old hitting a homerun and it counting. DBO is just a way to shorten the game.

I thought the game was for the players not the associations who make money on the tourneys.

I will play where you can swing away.

Again DBO terrible for the game.

PattyMac
Dec. 10, 2013
Adiktiv6
Men's 50
66 posts
PattyMac,
Keep swinging the bat! Let Mr 400 (batting avg, I'm sure) get lucking every now and then and hit a HR! He can then pat himself on the back and feel like a "complete player"! It always goes back to the "complete player" or "brings defense back to the game" statements! Everybody in Major / Major + can hit the ball and we all play pretty damn good defense, so there no reason to "bring defensive play" back to the game....it's been there all along! All you non-belivers, just come and watch a game or two and see!
Who are the HR's hurting, anyways? Remember, a team can only score 5-7 runs an inning as it is (save the last inning, the open inning)! Keeps shots in the middle down and pitchers from being forced to wear masks!
Dec. 10, 2013
garyheifner
361 posts
JB TEXAS

Will explain one more time. Hard hit low liners that I saw CLEARLY off the bat. As I dropped down to either catch on the 1st hop or block with my body, the balls hit the front edge of the rubber and kicked up high and before I could get my glove back up. Result, freggin BOOM off my protective gear. Kinda like the infielders where you see at at least one guy at almost every tournament walking around with a shinner or cut on their face from a bad hop.
Dec. 10, 2013
Mango
Men's 50
90 posts
I too would be interested in hearing SSUSAís rationale for the rule change for plus.

It seems like an overwhelming majority of plus players donít like it.

It also makes sense that they do have a DBO in the lower divisions- if you want to hit a bunch of home runs we have a place for you- the plus division.
Dec. 10, 2013
garyheifner
361 posts
EURSKINE

I have a plastic mask that I used to pitch with. It is called GAME FACE. I now use it if I play an infield position. It is very light and strong.


When I pitch now, I went to Direct Sports. I got a Wilson Helmet that I think was new year before last. Didn't like the mask that much. They came out with a new metal mask for the helmet last year that has only 2 bars on the bottom. The eye area is wide open and the 2 lower bars are
thinner and easier to see low grounders. They are labeled as softball masks. As all will now see, balls hit from about the knees up are easy to track. Hard hit ground balls get lost in the bottom of the masks bars if you don't get your head tilted down quickly. I do wear a cup and soccer shin guards.

Don't get lazy just because you have protectice gear. Take a good defensive stance after you release the ball and expect every ball to be hit at you.
Dec. 11, 2013
PattyMac
96 posts
I think the major and major plus divisions should be rolled into one division.

Again Please Quit Changing the Rules.

We come to tournaments to play ball not the have the game times reduced. Not a factor anyway as you can only score so many runs per inning anyway so what does it matter if it is a walk not a DBO.

Rule change made for no good reason as i can see.

LISTEN TO THE PLAYERS PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm just saying.

PattyMac
Dec. 11, 2013
Duke
Men's 60
720 posts
PattyMac, combining Major and Major Plus teams is just not going to happen. I agree that we need to stop changing the rules. We have enough senior rules, that make a newcomer want to not play after playing with the young ones. I am sure the game times will not be reduced, just the innings might be played in full. BTW, your Major Plus division can have 100 homeruns and a dead ball out, I really do not care. I have played in all divisions, and I find the AA, AAA, and Major divisions the most fun. We do not have to buy extra softballs, nor do we have to chase them too often over the fence, and we get to play a lot of defense. Also, many more teams to play at tournaments. This is not to say that Major Plus players do not play defense. I am sure that all of the Major Plus players can catch fly balls on the other side of the fence. Just kidding!!

JMHO,

Andy Smith
Dec. 11, 2013
PattyMac
96 posts
Duke,

Thanks for your response. Just to let you know some of my best friends play AAA. The love the game they play just as much as major and major plus players love the game they play.

They enjoy the game just as much as I do. I just hate the rule changes all the time. SSUSA had the DBO a few years ago and had they had to deal with all the balls hit up the middle after the homeruns were gone.

Remember the rule that if a pitcher got hit the batter was out. With the new rule for next year they knew that it would happen again hence the pitcher having to wear a mask.

I really think the powers to be would really just love to get rid of majoy and major plus. We are just headaches to them.

Just to let you know major and major plus teams play great defense. I am 61 and play with a great 60 major plus team and a 50 major team.

I will shut up now.

Good luck next year with all my friends in every division.

PattyMac
Dec. 12, 2013
Graphite
22 posts
Mr.Eurk,The Worth helment/mask isn,t bad.
Dec. 12, 2013
Eurskine
Men's 50
61 posts
Thanks Graphite..called Direct Sports...with the Senior Player Discount they give,will cost only $56.99. I appreciated the input.The League i play in will be going to a more solid piece of Headgear,will let them know about this as well.
Dec. 12, 2013
Pieman
Men's 50
84 posts
I have a problem with the mandatory mask rule.

I tried the masks and found that it created some blind spots.

Since this rule was imposed, might as well throw
a screen in front of the pithers also.

Mike Santo
Dec. 12, 2013
Pieman
Men's 50
84 posts
Was just thinking that why not make everyone wear a mask even while they are batting. Boy, wouldn't that cut down the power poduction. Now you all could see or (not see)how mush the mask hinders your vision.

Mike Santo
Dec. 12, 2013
Duke
Men's 60
720 posts
Pieman, I agree that there are a few balls that I could have caught in a tournament, if I was not wearing a mask. There are blind spots in all of the masks, but the Rip-It has the best vision and least amount of blind spots.

Andy Smith
Dec. 12, 2013
Duke
Men's 60
720 posts
Pieman, Forgot to mention that safety is now more important, than those few I could have caught. Just saying!

Andy Smith

Dec. 12, 2013
AcePV
Men's 60
22 posts
I personally think a pitchers mask is a great idea. I've used two different masks over the past three years and won't even consider pitching without one. I started out with a Game Face mask and it did have its problems with glare and restricted vision. I've been using a Rip It for a year or so and I love it. I always wear it with heavy framed sunglasses with no problem at all. As for blind spot?? No way. I think anyone who has witnessed a pitcher get his teeth knocked-out as I have might think twice about not wanting to use a mask; especially with these bats we're using.
Jan. 18, 2014
INHOC2
8 posts

Reiterating a comment I made in "Where are the Pitchers" section: I pitched for many years without protection until I, fortunately, caught a hot line drive right off my left cheek. I started wearing a mask. I also started wearing shin guards. This last season I was hit twice with line drives right off my shin. Without the guards I most certainly would have had two broken legs. Instead the ball ricocheted over to the dugout and I had nary a bruise. My feeling toward all the macho guys....it only takes one!...At our age that one could ruin your life. Also re: a mask...the Rip It with a visor is great. A few times out you won't even know its there.
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