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Discussion: Aluminum bats and blue dot balls

Posted Discussion
Aug. 18, 2014
Mario
Men's 50
381 posts
Aluminum bats and blue dot balls
Just curious how many on this site would still play senior ball if they went back to aluminum bats and blue dot balls? I for one would love to see this happen and would continue to play.
Aug. 18, 2014
homefry
Men's 55
11 posts
I would
Aug. 18, 2014
LP
297 posts
I would, the blue dot was a great ball I used to swing a 38 oz bomb bat and it never broke I think thats why they banned all these type bats
Aug. 19, 2014
hemi racer
Men's 65
89 posts
I also would enjoy playing this style of ball again. I still have my bats, so I'm ready to go when you guys pull it together. Do they still produce the ole blue dot balls?
Aug. 19, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
It would be outstanding especially since it would "bring" all of these "supposed-power hitters" back to Earth. They couldn't hit their "dingers" back even with a golf ball & the wind at their backs in the old days and these "senior's only" bats of today, make them feel like Babe Ruth. My 38 oz Barrel Bomb Bat was a joy to use and very dependable and had a guarantee to boot.

Aluminum bats and Blue, Red and Hot Dots.......When the game was beautiful to play and forced a player to use his/her "God-given skills & abilities and not be aided by modern technology.
Aug. 19, 2014
tg69
310 posts
Steroids, Viagra and and Senior bats make you do things that you couldn't do 30 years ago.....Bring back aluminum!!!!!
Aug. 19, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
Been alluding to the same fact of "greed" for the past few years that the "powers/leadership" of these senior associations are and have been in bed with the bat manufactures for the $$$$$. They would NEVER ALLOW aluminum bats and blue dot balls to ever re-appear within the Great Game of Slow-Pitch Softball.
Aug. 19, 2014
taits
Men's 65
4395 posts
I know many that would still play.
I doubt there would actually be any REAL difference in doing that compared to what we have available now.

Alloy bats dent, wave and crack. Used with Balls 47 to 52 cor with average of 525 comp.
Composite bats crack, break are used with balls @ 44 \375 or lessor balls.

Both these equipment type comparisons fly about same distances. Damage rates are about same also.
While I'm sure some will disagree, that's ok too. But I doubt this will happen because there is too much money changing hands involved. Those that did make the alloys probably still have the machinery to start up again though. The process is very interesting to see in person.
Aug. 19, 2014
STL0
49 posts
I would still play and prefer it over what we do today.
Aug. 19, 2014
stick8
1318 posts
I'd definitely still play.
Aug. 19, 2014
DOLFAN
39 posts
Oh yeah I would love to play "Old School" style again..we could weed out the "wanna be" HR hitters. Although, I would bet there would still be some "Bat Altering" by the Cheaters!!!!
Aug. 19, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
Not if the Umpires used were at the minimun District Certified (a.k.a. A.S.A.) and did a required Pre-Game BAT inspection.
Aug. 19, 2014
taits
Men's 65
4395 posts
Umps currently used are pretty good overall. There is always going to be that
10% er as it were.
Aug. 19, 2014
JamesLG
304 posts


Move the fences in to 275', leave the bases where they are today and go back to non composites and the blue/red dots and it would be a good game. I also enjoy the game as it is today. One thing to remember is when the equipment is dumbed down and the fielders move in the gaps shrink for the non power guys. The singles hitters will be pinched and a lot of those hits will not drop in.

thanks:

James
Aug. 19, 2014
swing for the fences
Men's 50
1006 posts
Yep, but blue dots in the heat go to crap... would have to go the the Rock to keep up with the heat!
Aug. 20, 2014
DBurke23
Men's 50
13 posts
Has anyone watched a high school or college baseball game lately? The BBCOR bat has taken away 60% of the home runs. It is BORING !!

But (and most significant) it is not just home runs - gap shots are now fly balls and hard grounders through the infield are now groundouts.

In my opinion changing bats/balls would affect the singles hitter far more than it would the power hitter.

Aug. 20, 2014
STL0
49 posts
JamesLG - Why move the fences in? I never played on fields with 275' fences. That is going back to the same philosophy today which is it should be easy to hit a home run. It shouldn't be easy in my opinion.
Aug. 20, 2014
LeeLee50
31 posts
Do you really think you play defense like you did 20, 30 or 40 years ago. The so called HR hitters do you still play in the outfield and track balls down or do hit a seed and jog to first and ask for a runner? Keep it real we are not kids anymore.
Aug. 20, 2014
hemi racer
Men's 65
89 posts
You know; now that I think about it I DO play defense the same as I did in my 20's and 30's. BAD! But with these new bats I get to enjoy being able to hit one ever now and then.
Aug. 21, 2014
DBurke23
Men's 50
13 posts
Why are power hitters being referred to as "supposed power hitters", "wanna be HR hitters" and "so called HR hitters" in this discussion ???

Aug. 21, 2014
LeeLee50
31 posts
Because the majority of guys that complain about senior bats and new balls are HR,power hitters. You rarely see non power hitters complain about new bats and ball. Guys that were only able to HR's 20, 30 or 40 years ago, don't like the fact that they
aren't the only ones to hit HR's now.


Do you hear guys that could run fast, back, then complain about CC runners for all the past power hitters that can't run around the bases. Really, jog down to first and then ask for a runner. You can't have your cake and eat it too. The game has changed so it adapts to all players not just HR AKA power hitters.
Aug. 21, 2014
redwestgirl
3 posts
I'd like to play.
Aug. 21, 2014
LeeLee50
31 posts
You want play old school rules then so be it, no CC runners no run rules, see how many senior teams and players you have? We will have aluminum bats and blue dots and red dots.

LOL
Aug. 21, 2014
Mario
Men's 50
381 posts
Don't consider myself a HR hittier but I do and can hit them. I have only asked for a courtesy runner a few times in my 4 years of playing senior ball. Only when I was hurt. The rest of the time our manager just sends someone out to run for me. I don't like it but they do it. So that would not defer me from wanting to go back to the old equiptment.
Aug. 21, 2014
DBurke23
Men's 50
13 posts
Sorry LeeLee but I completely disagree................. I think the complainers can't hit 'em so they don't want anybody to hit 'em so they want to change the bats back to aluminum.
Aug. 22, 2014
DCPete
238 posts
Can't imagine any sanctioning association would ever go back to Blue Dots no matter what bats were being used.
A 47 cor/525 compression ball would be deemed too dangerous by them even if someone was just hit by a thrown ball.
Their attorneys would never let them go back to the Blue Dots under any circumstances.
Aug. 22, 2014
LeeLee50
31 posts
It doesn't matter if you ask for a runner or if your coach sends one out for you, that isn't how the game was designed to be played. You hit the ball and run the bases, the coach sends out a runner for you because it isn't a positive for the team. Back in the day you didn't get CC runners, sometimes you got one CC runner per inning. All I am saying if want to play by old school rules then play by all of them, if you only want the ones you want, that isn't fair.

DBurke23 not to many guys that can't hit HR's, that now have a chance every once in awhile, I doubt are complaining. The VIAGRA stick has brought excitement back in the game for a lot of Senior Players, many that would have quit playing if not for that.
Aug. 22, 2014
DieselDan
Men's 65
14 posts
Please, please, please! I need my senior bat to get the ITP hr's. My wheels make up for the 20-30 feet my bat speed is lacking.
Aug. 22, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
the "VIAGRA STICK".............Outstanding nickname LeeLEE50!.....and very appropriate!
Aug. 22, 2014
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
LeeLee, it's ok for the bats to change the game at the risk of injuries, but it's not ok to want the old school bats and balls to reduce them. Screw those folks for wanting a safer game and do the baserunning for your freaking self! Take that! If home runs are the only reason players play the game today, then our game has gone right in the shitter!

"Do you really think you play defense like you did 20, 30 or 40 years ago." No, we can't field and run like we used to. We've slowed down, but the bats have increased speed of the ball going thru the infield. Let's compare apples to apples here LeeLee. You say we'll lose players if the change, I'll say we might, but not as many as we lost because to the bats!
Aug. 22, 2014
Omar Khayyam
1002 posts
Go back to aluminum bats? In a heartbeat! Would restore the balanced game that was popular for decades and possibly tempt back the hundreds of thousands of aging male softball players who have rejected "home run derby" introduced with the composite bats.

Go back to Blue Dot balls? Not going to happen. As DCPete points out, they are dangerous for a lot of reasons. Our rec department banned them back in the day when we were swinging woodies and aluminum because of the injuries (to pitchers AND to third basemen and shortstops!). Just too hot for the human eye and brain to track.
Aug. 22, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
Well said Omar!
Aug. 22, 2014
AJC
40 posts
I'm not to sure about that Omar. I don't think hundreds of thousands of players would come back if we went back to aluminum bats. I think we would lose as many players as we would gain if this happened. I'd still play, even save myself $600 - $800 a year in bats that I spend each year in bats. But I'd still prefer to use the bats we have today.......that's just my preference of course.
Aug. 22, 2014
LeeLee50
31 posts
I am not disagreeing with the bat safety issue. I am talking about the guys that want to change the bats because of the fact that many players can now hit HR's and now they are not considered as the only ones that can hit HR's. You can say want you want but, I seriously doubt that you would have somewhere in the neighborhood of 480 senior teams participating in LV. It has already been stated on the board many times SSUSA is a business and more business is created with the new bats and balls, FACT. SSUSA is like any other business, they do what they have to do to increase the bottom line. Don't you think if going to aluminum bats and blue and red would increase their bottom line they would do so.

REALLY

Here is some COLD HARD FACTS

SSUSA World Championships

2009 316 Teams Tournament Fees $660.00 $208,560.00
2010 329 Teams Tournament Fees $660.00 $217,140.00
2011 337 Teams Tournament Fees $660.00 $222,420.00
2012 446 Teams Tournament Fees $695.00 $309,970.00
2013 480 Teams Tournament Fees $695.00 $333,600.00


You do know that they also get a % from every room for each night from all participate hotels and motels.

So Pricer do you really think SSUSA is going back to Aluminum bats and worth blue and red dot balls.

REAllY
Aug. 22, 2014
Omar Khayyam
1002 posts
LeeLee, I covered this about 4 years ago in a series of posts and it's too much to recapitulate now, but here are some observations:

1. Las Vegas is not the true measurement of involvement in senior softball tournament play. Because of its status as America's "party city", and the attraction of gambling, etc., Las Vegas will always be a draw, whether with composite or aluminum bats. The real measure is the total number of teams entering all tournaments during the year in all associations that allow senior bats. It won't be as dramatic an increase, and may be a decrease.

2 The second factor is to measure how many men, former softball players who loved the sport, are now entering their tournament eligible years, say over the last 10 years. You will find that softball tournament participation percentage will lag behind the increase in senior male population.

3. Now factor in the increasing fitness of senior males due to better nutrition, better medicine, better surgery (know anyone playing with an artificial hip or knee? Of course you do), better fitness, etc. and you will find that the population that is already in their 60s and 70s should show little decline in participation due to health, yet there is a significant decline. For example, the Northern California Senior Softball Association now has 104 teams, and since players this year can double roster, the actual count is likely 98 or so equivalent teams. They had more than 100 ten years ago and the senior male population has increased by hundreds of thousands in California in that time.

Considering men in this demographic were part of the peak popularity period of softball in the 70s and 80s when softball was the most popular participation sport in America, why are they no longer playing? It isn't for lack of money (softball is still a bargain compared to golf, for example). It isn't because of bad health. It isn't because of busy lives (always present). It isn't because of lack of leisure time. I suggest that it is because the sport changed on them with the focus on power hitting (where even a pipsqueak like me can hit a home run when I couldn't hit even one my first 45 years with shorter fences) and the lesser importance on defense, base running, and strategy. The composite bats have cheapened slugging and batting average, just as the goosed up lanes and balls ruined bowling for many.


Aug. 22, 2014
LeeLee50
31 posts
They are coming to play the game and to have some fun.
Aug. 23, 2014
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
LeeLee, must of struck a nerve because you now want to single me out as the anticomposite! "So Pricer do you really think SSUSA is going back to Aluminum bats and worth blue and red dot balls." For the record, even with those balls, the ball never traveled as fast thru the infield back then even with the major players hitting them as they do know with players who never played competive tournament ball. Sure softball is fun, that's why we tolerate all the BS that comes with it. But don't be a SSUSA slappy! I'm just one guy that feels when every step taken to protect the fielders/pitchers that have been made has been just a bandaid. Fact is the real solution is right in front of everyone that plays the game. Come on, you can say it? No I don't think they ever will return to the things and products that got them where they are today! But, if anyone could put a tournament or tournament series together using the old technology, I believe we as players would enjoy the game that much more. JMO
Aug. 23, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
Excellent points of view Pricer........Both you & LeeLee50 have solid targets but it still comes to play with SSUSA & the Bat Manufactures plus all of the other $$$$$ making sectors they control......For the most part as a Senior Softball Club Sponsor, it's like me cutting a check for the Green Fees to allow a group of guys to go play a weekend's worth of Golf. No more, no less. These Senior Associations give absolutely no respect or acknowledgement to Sponsors (unlike the old days when they were Gold)......Just bring in the large numbers and $$$$$$$!
Aug. 23, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
To make my point further, my current club (Banker & Mann) is currently playing in the Northern Championships which is about an easy 1-hour drive from me home and I refuse to attend because I have lost the "love for the game" due to the current state of affairs with Senior Softball and the Associations that operate them.
Aug. 23, 2014
Sparky.1
Men's 55
119 posts
and while we're on the subject, with all of $$$$$ being made on senior tournaments, you'd think tourney's like the Northern, Western, Eastern & Southern and perhaps a few more, would think about a "Paid Entry Fee" into the Worlds to the winning division clubs.
Aug. 23, 2014
DaveDowell
Men's 60
1083 posts
LeeLee50 ... Nice job on the "Multiplication" section of the COLD HARD FACTS quiz, featuring the number of teams and the entry fees by year ... In a normal tournament, there would also be a "Subtraction" section of the quiz, but apparently not this time because you must think all of the following are true for the World Masters Championships:

Field rentals are FREE Field preps are FREE The City of Las Vegas will waive their 15% extortion sanction fee of over $10,000 for teams that play a single game at Lorenzi or Doc Romeo Softballs are FREE Tournament insurance is FREE Umpires work for FREE Directors work for FREE Awards are FREE Tourney personnel travel for FREE Tourney personnel and umpire hotels are FREE Rental cars are FREE Printing and reproduction costs are FREE Shipping tourney supplies and equipment is FREE The Home Office support staff works for FREE ... And the list could go on, but maybe you can see a trend ...

In 2007 at the Phoenix World Championships, I heard a wonderful lady, the late Layla Bryan of SPA, give essentially this same "speech" to a disgruntled multiplication expert during a rain delay (yes, it occasionally rains in Phoenix) ... It became hilarious as he simply stared at her, apparently perplexed to learn that Gross Revenue does NOT equal Net Profit, before silently walking away ...

Aug. 23, 2014
LeeLee50
31 posts
Dave,
I was trying to be negative in anyway, I was just trying to show that the numbers of teams are increasing every year and that SSUSA
the business is doing the right things, that is to increase revenue to increase profit. SSUSA has done a very good in creating a product that consumers like and enjoy. It is the largest Senior Softball Association and their is nothing wrong with that. I do know that those numbers are just gross dollars. I didn't think that was pure profit. LOL

Pricer no harm was meant towards you, sorry.
Aug. 24, 2014
AJC
40 posts
Sparky, you're post that SSUSA is making " $$$$$ " off of senior softball seems a bit exaggerated. If Lee Lees numbers from last years big tournament is correct of $333 k gross , they probably would be lucky to keep 10-15 % of that as profit after all is said and done. Then how many guys are getting a slice of that pie. This is a business and should be reasonable to expect them to make a profit.

Even if you're team is self-sponsored, splitting the cost of $695 between 12 guys is less than $60 per guy for 3 days of ball providing you're has the good fortune of playing on the last day. I'm sure you're portion of the entry fee will be a small percentage of you're softball budget for the weekend.

The fee for such a big event ( $60 per guy ) seems pretty reasonable for a weekend of ball. Be thankful they're making a few bucks cause if they didn't, there wouldn't be a tourney held at all. If you want over priced, take a family of 4 to a Gaints game and fork out $500 for seats that are just decent, not great.

The cost of senior softball seems pretty reasonable .
Aug. 24, 2014
bkb555
94 posts
back to original topic...we play our senior leagues with utrip bats and 44 core balls......it is "regular" softball like back in the "old" days.....the tournaments and leagues that use senior bats art creating all the "super ball off a tennis racket" effect.....we use senior bats in tournaments only and end of season BP and fun games.....
Aug. 24, 2014
taits
Men's 65
4395 posts
LeeLee50, Sparky.1;
Those gross numbers are just one of many not mentioned on credit side of the account, then you have the debit side to consider which you didn't mention. That is substantial as well. That said, the net profit is substantial as well.
SSUSA fees have increased quite a bit but I'd bet some other cost have as well.
You\we have choices. attend, find another venue, maybe closer or not, or stay home and not play.
I rarely attend for many reasons but it is the best out there other than the Huntsman Games.

I think the majority would prefer to play.
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