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Discussion: Deleteing The PPR Rule

Posted Discussion
April 21, 2009
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
Deleteing The PPR Rule
For those that do not approve of the PPR rule, the deletion of this rule is simple, use a pitchers screen. This will stop all the griping of the PPR rule and will provide 95% safety for the pitcher. Now those that do not approve of the screen can start complaining of it's use, however the important thing is the safety of the pitcher no one else. The pitcher now can remove all his protective gear and move about like the rest of the team.

PTL
April 22, 2009
Robo2
223 posts
I fully agree, but many pitchers do not and neither does many of the directors. The arguement is that now one is placing a foreign object on the field.

To that I say yes and great. I have owned a screen for practice for several years and it would not get in the way and it would difinitely reduce the risk of injury especially serious injury.

If the organizations will not make it a rule, why not make it optional to the fielding team??? No fear of litigation because it was by choice.
April 22, 2009
tater9
62 posts
When we start talking about screens, masks, shin guards and such for protection it is really easy to surmise that the equipment being used has far exceeded the physical abilities of the particpants playing the game of slowpitch, this goes for young and old.
April 22, 2009
ROOSTER10
Men's 60
91 posts
We all agree that lately we have heard of injuries caused by up the middle hitting pitchers etc.Take away the fences and hot bats and get back to playing defense alittle instead of having a stiff neck watching the bombs go out of the park.The PPR rule protects no one and it will stay. I would like to see a net placed in front of the pictcher but that will never happen!!We all know the problem greed from associations who care about making more money instead of letting us play ball.Just my take !!!
April 22, 2009
Robo2
223 posts
I have been playing this game as most of you have, for over 35 years. I remember playing in money tournaments, at least twice per month back in the 80's. We ran two tournaments a year to fund ourselves and we turned teams away after we had 32.

In tournament ball back then, the A flight teams scored >30 runs per game; B flight teams scored >20 - 25 runs per game and if you didn't score 15 per game, you didn't get in those tournaments.

Softball in tournaments always was a hitters game. Good Defense was a plus, butif you didn't hit, you didn't play. In that respect, nothing has changed.

Yes, hitting up the middle was done, but it was controlled by each team - you hit at my pitcher and I'll hit at yours. But most of the time it was a mistake. Most of the power hitters went for the fences (which were 270 ft). SO the PPR does not solve anything; I wuld think most of the hits up the middle were mistakes.
April 22, 2009
Mr. Manassas
230 posts
In the "olden" days I played against some of the best teams and players in the country. I know my memory is fading but I never remember seeing balls go through the infield as fast as they do now with some of the bats in todays game. I have to admit that I love to hit with the senior bats but I also pitch. I use to want people to hit the middle so I could make a big play but now I must admit that I pitch people in such a way as to make it difficult to hit the middle as a means of self-preservation.
April 22, 2009
JohnBob
Men's 60
248 posts
No way is a screen the answer, will Pitcher's be able to play defense or just pitch and get behine screen,slow grounder to 3rd-3rd baseman chargers ball and his throw to 1st hits screen,outfields throwns to home could hit screen. Its like this country we live in fix one thing and screw up half dozen more. The whole problem is the bats,I love swing my u2 but 10 years ago we did not have this promblem. The more I think about this other than doing away with the senior bats is do as Butch17 sugguest and go to 11 defensive players and reguire that one stays in infield say within 5' right or left of 2rd base. My 2 cents
April 22, 2009
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
JohnBob, in all of your 112 word post there was not one word regarding the main subject, (pitcher safety)
April 23, 2009
Omar Khayyam
999 posts
I'm a pitcher (for 57 years) and I agree that the PPR does little to protect the safety of the pitcher, mainly because I believe most of the time I have been hit or dodged a near miss, it was an accident by the batter (as well as the many outs I made on hits up the middle). The real answer is to eliminate the hot bats and return to the softball common in my first 50 years of play.

A second choice is to use a screen. The screen is mandated in my day play league where we play 3 games a week, 52 weeks a year in California. So I pitch about 130 games a year and the number of times the screen has interfered with a play is really minimal.

Sure, every game, there is at least one batter who hits the screen (isn't that what it is for?). But an outfield throw home that hits the screen might not even happen once in a year. And an infield throw from third to first that hits the screen is about the same frequency. I still field most ground balls and all popups. Don't knock it if you haven't tried it.

But remember, I would rather return to the days of yesteryear where single wall, non-composite bats matched the abilities and skill of most players.
April 23, 2009
JohnBob
Men's 60
248 posts
Sorry Rod,the main reson for my post was to say I do not like the idea of a screen. I play 3rd base and get a lot of rockets hit my why,I know I'm futher away from batter than Pitcher. We can say what we want but the bats are the whole problem. The extra defensive player in middle of infield would do a lot more to kept batter from hitting middle than the current PPR(does not apply if Pitcher backs out of box, unbelieveable} plus give one more person a chance to play,plus would speed up games,more double plays etc. My friends that use to play back in the day are always kidding me about the special senior rules,if a screen is put in front of Pitcher than I'm done playing,because it would not be the game I've love playing for last 40 yrs. Like I said before it was a lot better game when I started playing 14 years ago before these hot senior bats. Ron I don't know how many words this post is but hopefully it was not too many lol. Have a great season
April 23, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
tater9 is ABSOLUTELY correct. All the gimmicks are just to accommodate the unnecessary equipment.
April 23, 2009
4Four4
Men's 60
83 posts
A major improvement in pitcher safety would be to change the ball (slightly). Surface hardness, density, and compression are all critical to coming up with a ball that is not a 100 mph brick. There are alot of smarter guys in here that know how to do this. They know that the big boppers can hit a week old grapefuit 300 feet. They know that we've all spent a gazillion dollars on our own personal equipment.
Let's not wreck this game with additional equipment and policies that aren't needed.
Change the ball. (Slightly.)
#4 - DH
The Tub
April 23, 2009
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
Omar Khayyam, well stated, I agree with your findings on thrown balls hitting the screen as a pitcher I keep track of where the ball is with respect to a portable screen (only because I'm in the middle of play)and I think the chances of hitting it are not likely. I would suggest for those that do not approve of the use of a screen. Try hitting the screen from various positions.
April 23, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
Rod, why turn the field into a miniature golf hole?
April 24, 2009
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
Lets not loss site of the subject, (Pitcher Safety) one item should not make any difference, it is better than seeing a pitcher lying on the ground.
April 24, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
Sports have inherent risks. We know it when we take the field. You cannot stop everything.
April 24, 2009
WOW
197 posts
Rod Sweet. I totally agree with the use of the screen. Ones safety should take precedent over image. Week after week I see the difference the screen makes in our local rec leagues [which have as much talent as most tourn. teams I've seen]
"Sports have inherent risks" "You can't stop everything" What a bonehead statement. Ever heard of seat belts and air bags!
April 27, 2009
LP
291 posts
i agree that the PPR doesnt really protect the pitcher, the new home run rule will increase the injuries to the pitcher. but what i do see is that the pitchers that do the most gripping are the pitchers that have lost there defensive skills if they had any.

start adding pitching screens and you ruin the game. next thing will be some staffer sitting in the stands will be there to rule the batter out if determined the ball was hit to hard by the batter.
April 27, 2009
WOW
197 posts
LP, what is your experience with the screen? Have you ever played a game using one? Have you ever seen a pitchers face after he's been hit? Do you think your skill level is the same now as when you were younger? Do you think a pitcher, or for that matter, ANY player should have to quit playing because of reduced skill levels? If so, would that mean you too?
April 27, 2009
#6
Men's 60
1183 posts
I have a question about the SPA tournament held in Baytown last weekend.In our first game I was lead off, I ask the ump if we were playing with the PPR, he didn't have a clue what I was talking about. Does SPA not use the PPR ? Anyone feel free to answer.
April 27, 2009
TexasTransplant
Men's 70
420 posts
SPA has not adopted the PPR rule.
April 27, 2009
#6
Men's 60
1183 posts
TexasTransplant,
Thanks, that's kinda what I thought.
Have a good 2009.
April 27, 2009
mad dog
Men's 60
3936 posts
#6 u got to play,when did u start.we didn't get any games in b/c of the downpour friday night.
yes SPA doesn't have a PPR rule.
April 27, 2009
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
WOW, thank you for your responses,your thoughts are the same as mine regarding the screen and player safety.
April 28, 2009
#6
Men's 60
1183 posts
mad dog,
We played 3 games on Friday starting at 8:30 and went back to the fields Sat. morning and saw all the water on the fields and was told it was cancelled.
April 28, 2009
Norq44
58 posts
Having played in the Qualifier this past weekend in Auburndale/Winterhaven, I now feel qualified to comment on the "Pitcher Protection Rule". I was around for the whole weekend and I had the opportunity to see many games. Here is my opinion for what it's worth.
This rule needs to be IMMEDIATELY rescinded. It does nothing to protect the pitcher. In fact, the way it is being used on the field, there will definitely be someone hurt badly at some point this summer. I was directly behind the screen watching shot after shot go up the middle in one game, and the umpire came back to get a drink between innings and I questioned him concerning this rule. I was floored by what he told me. He said " the ball has to HIT the pitcher, he must not have made ANY move to field it, and he MUST be standing in the little box provided". I have been pitching slow pitch softball since 1973, so I am no expert, but I can assure you that this rule as it is currently being interpreted does not work. It does not stop anyone from hitting middle.
In my humble opinion there are only two viable ways to make this game a little safer for the pitcher. One way would be to put the pitcher in a 6 foot diameter circle and institute a "Halo Rule" whereby if a ball passes through that circle any lower than the pitchers head it be an inning ending out. ( I know a lot of you readers are going to be shaking your heads on this, but the penalty has to be severe or it will not force the hitter to change). I also will add that I am not in favor of doing this, I'm just saying it is one way to stop the middle hitting that is now happening.
I think the very best thing to do is to find the proper ball to play with.
We had the opportunity to hit the .52 cor. 275 comp. ball at CST in February, and it was flying out of the park. What am I missing here?? I have read that this ball is many times less dangerous than the current ball we are playing with. Is it going to take a tragedy on the field to finally get it right? Who among us wants to be that martyr?
April 28, 2009
mad dog
Men's 60
3936 posts
rod u are right the rule does nothing to protect the pitcher,it should be called(like a couple of other people have said)batter penalty rule.
nord44,i was also at the CST and hit the 52-275 ball,as far as i'm concerned we can keep all bats and use this ball and it would really help protecting the pitcher.as you said the guys will still be able to hit it out(the ones who can normally do it)and us singles hitters will still be able to get it thru the inf with some speed on it.some people just don't understand the danger you put the pitcher in with the presnet balls being used,and if they do,they don't care.alls it takes is one mistake for someone to be severely injured.
April 28, 2009
grumpy55
Men's 60
102 posts
This PPR rule has been beat to death. Take it out, allow the extra infielder in all divisions if your team chooses to. They allow it in the older divisions so whats the difference. People will have their gripes about this also but I am sure it would help out the pitcher some as far as hitting the middle at least in my world. Us old 16" players probably would agree and you old 12' players:) would disagree. It's alright to agree to disagree I would think. Just my .05 worth, inflation.
April 28, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
grumpy55,
Yes, the horse is was beat to death, but the rule is here for the year at least. Just like tho other two that are worthless,(to some) unless a pitcher actually has it happen to him\her. We all know who's watch it will happened on.
16" ball games, lots of fun, and you didn't "need" a glove in OF. Had a team in the early 70's for that.
I like the inflation part.
April 28, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
Want to finish the killing of a dying sport? Put a screen on the field and make us all look less athletic than the stereotypes of softball guy people already think.

A screen? LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

And why is the pitcher so special? Put a screen in front of everyone.
April 28, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
The screen has already been used in Palm Springs, & if I remember correct, w\o incident. I did not attend that event, but I believe it was posted here. Not sure if last year or this one like Jan or Feb.
April 28, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
Define "incident".
April 28, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
A thrown ball, from any fielding (defensive) player, making a play, hit the screen.
April 28, 2009
Omar Khayyam
999 posts
Taits, good definition. As one who plays club games 120 times a year, all with a screen, mandated for the last 8 years, I can tell you that such "incidents" are very, very rare. Most of these day play players are over 60, but about 15% are in their 50s. I was skeptical at first, but screens are no problem for fielders, just for batters who hit grounders or line drives up the middle. We play a dead ball when a batted ball hits the screen; some clubs call it a strike.
April 28, 2009
WOW
197 posts
Dirty's opinions LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL !
April 29, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
taits, perhaps there was no "incident" because the players made unnatural movements to avoid hitting the screen. Better than hitting it, I suppose, but NOT good if anyone has to adjust anything to throw around a miniature golf obstacle.
April 29, 2009
JohnBob
Men's 60
248 posts
The screen would be fine for rec league,club,coed,church ball etc,but how many teams will fly across country for World Tourneys to play with screen? I'm not saying screen will get in the way of defense every game but it is possible (how about pop ups in infield). But a Pitcher is not hurt every game either. The extra infielder behine Pitcher would do more to kept batter from hitting middle, plus would give one more person a chance to play defense plus would speed up the game. Maybe we could get full 7 innings in before time runs out. The older age groups use this now.
April 29, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
The thought of "speeding up the game" helps ruin the beauty of baseball/softball. Get rid of time limits, no need for them, and speeding up the game becomes a non-issue.

If you really want to speed the game, have guys try hustling on and off the field like they should have been taught to do decades ago.
April 29, 2009
Omar Khayyam
999 posts
JohnBob, don't disagree that the eleventh man up the middle might be a good solution, but it is amazing how quickly one gets used to a screen being normal. I never have a problem fielding a popup because of the screen, for example.

Also, as an oldtimer, I can remember the concerns about many age and safety innovations of the past. Here's a few:

1) The double bag at first will eliminate the swipe tag on a mis-throw to first
2) Sliding into home to make the catcher drop the ball is part of the game
3) The commit line near home eliminates the time-honored beauty of the rundown
4) Calling interference on an upright runner going to second or third is wrong. Just throw at them and they will get down or veer in the future
5) Pitching from 50 or 56 feet away will ruin the arc and negatively affect batting averages
6) If a guy can't run the bases, he shouldn't be playing. No substitute runners

Probably others can add more. Screens may be the solution of the future (at least for some ages/or divisions). We can adjust and still have fun and quality play.
April 29, 2009
birdie
Men's 60
683 posts
most of the screens we think of are very wide. I would think that they are 4 foot wide at least. we recently played in a tourney do not remember which organization but the pitchers box was only the width of a normal human. How about a screen that wide does anyone think that it would work
April 30, 2009
LP
291 posts
this is for WOW

yes i have used the screen in games, it takes the defensive play away from the pitcher. using the screen would be more dumbing down of the game than what already is going on. and yes i know my skill level isnt what it was when i was younger thats why you move to the different age level and things pretty much stay the same. some players have to play a different position if there skills change too much. the old saying of-- if you cant stand the heat get out of the kitchen or the pitching in this case.
May 1, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
Omar, all 6 items on your list are still absolutely true and valid.

Why can I slide into second or third, in many cases behind the infielder, but not into home where I would be always be in front of the catcher?
May 1, 2009
WOW
197 posts
LP. this is what's good about this board, everyone is intitled to their opinion and I respect yours, BUT I also disagree. I see no reason to "get out of the kitchen" just because your getting older and your skill level is declining AND you've pitched all your life AND LIKE IT. As we get older and want to stay active, somethings have to change NOT END. The screen makes sense for some age groups.
May 1, 2009
#6
Men's 60
1183 posts
WOW.
I know you and respect you as a ball player, But I play ball with LP, and I will tell you this, he is one of the BEST defensive pitchers I have ever played with or against. I play either third base. ss, or second base, and I have played with and against some very good pitchers, and he's in that catergory !!!Have a good year.
May 1, 2009
OTE24
Men's 65
122 posts
When is the 1st Dirty Rules Tournament?
Anyone so critical of senior softball
should be able to throw a 1st Class
Tourney all would want to attend. I'll
be there for no time limits,unlimited
runs,collisions,playing the game Ol'
Ty Cobb would have played. Can I wear my steel cleats? Would love to spike some sonbitch! I'm sure we'll accommodate Joe with unlimited HR's
with a wooden bat. We are going to use wood, right? Dirty,come out and play;
you might find out that there is a lot to be said for senior ball and the
people who work so hard to put us on the field. Whether it be NorCal,SSUSA
Spa, whatever. I'll save a spot on our roster at Rock n' Reno for you. Life's
too short,enjoy. Oh,I pitch and don't
like the PPR. This stuff gets old.
John
May 1, 2009
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
What is wrong with metal spikes? 14 year old high schoolers play with them. I never saw my son or his teammates losing limbs because of them.

All I did was agree with Omar, how do I get singled out. But his points were absolutely valid. And how again is sliding when you are in front of the catcher more dangerous than sliding behind an infielder?
May 2, 2009
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
As the originator of this thread I would like to close on any further post. I would like to thank all who have provided their thoughts, and will provide a summary regarding my thoughts related to the subject. "Deleting the PPR Rule"
May 2, 2009
SSUSA Staff
1258 posts
Thread closed at originator's request.
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