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Discussion: PPR

Posted Discussion
May 7, 2009
Wes
Men's 65
312 posts
PPR
I have trying to find some facts about this problem and I came across the following:
Runners get hurt 2% of the time by batted balls
Pitcher get hurt 7% of the time by batted balls
People get hurt 31% of the time by batted balls while warming up
Fielder get hurt 49% of the time by
batter balls
If my math is right "fielder" other than
Pitcher get hurt from a batted ball 7 times each time a pitcher gets hurt 1 time.
It looks like we have a problem but the problem is with "Fielder" not
"Pitchers"
Wes
May 7, 2009
docswear
Men's 55
98 posts
Wes.... I believe you are on to something here. I have long advocated that either a screen or a DBO provision be available for the third base position. Presently I only can complain about the bruises . With a DBO rule at third I could brag about the bruises as put-outs (<.
docswear
May 7, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4395 posts
Why not go all the way, :) Each fielder has a 2x6 area just before the pitch, if he get hit with a hit ball within it, it's a DBO.
Has option to catty a screen out with him.
lol


When will it end.
May 8, 2009
BruceinGa
Men's 60
2689 posts
docswear, don't forget me at first base!
May 8, 2009
DMac
Men's 60
186 posts
A lot of 3rd basemen cover more ground with their bodies than with their gloves. Do they make screens that big? :)
May 8, 2009
Omar Khayyam
1002 posts
Wes, your math is wrong and here is why.

On a typical 300 foot softball field, there are 70,650 square feet of playing area in fair territory. The pitcherís fielding area is 3 feet wide by 60 feet long or 180 square feet. I admit that some pitchers not only back up, but field more to the left and right than 3 feet (if they have time to react), but I also did not include foul ball territory where fielders are often hurt, not do I include the catcher.

So, 8 fielders patrol 70,470 square feet. The pitcher patrols 180 square feet. In other words, for every fair batted ball, it is 392 more times likely that it goes to a fielder other than the pitcher. Yet fielders are injured only 7 times as much as the pitcher. They should be injured almost 400 times more! The pitcher is injured more because he is unable to avoid or field a ball coming more rapidly from a closer distance.

So you say that is an unfair comparison, since the vast reaches of an outfield result in fewer dangerous contacts and thus fewer injuries. So letís compare the infield.

The infield area where there are 65 foot bases, and the players play five feet beyond the base, is 3847 square feet. The pitcherís area remains at 180 square feet. There are 4 infielders, so they each cover 917 square feet. That means that it is 5 times more likely that a batted ball will go to them than to the pitcher. We donít have statistics to compute how often infielders are injured so we canít make the same comparison. I would guess that their ratio of injury to pitchers is 3 to 1.

Even adding in injuries to the catcher on foul tips (do you know any slow pitch catcher who wears a mask?), and injuries to both corner infielders and outfielders on foul balls, you will see that it is much more dangerous to be a pitcher. Although injured 7 times as much as a pitcher, there are 9 times as many fielders and they contact the batted ball 400 times more.

The problem is not with fielders, but protecting the pitcher.
May 9, 2009
DMac
Men's 60
186 posts
Good points, Omar, but leave the outfielders out of your calculations. We have problems with holes, sprinkler heads, and occasional collisions with fences and teammates, but never batted balls.I did see one outfielder seriously hurt by a batted ball in Burbank, but it came from another field. Redo your math without that big chunk of green and see if that doesn't make the infield a more dangerous place to hang out.
May 9, 2009
Omar Khayyam
1002 posts
DMac, of course the infield is more dangerous than the outfield because of ball speed and especially bad hops, but with good conditions, the injury level starts to equalize. I play during the week on artificial turf where bad hops are a rarity. There have been plenty of outfielders injured by fly balls because of sun, knuckling, misjudged running attempts at a catch, and in my personal case, a broken thumb on my glove hand from a successfully caught ball that I must have run a 1000 yards to catch! Wherever Wes's statistics came from, I would love to see the difference between outfielders and infielders, if they were taken into account.
May 10, 2009
the wood
1087 posts
Wes:
Might I ask where you found the accident stats that started this thread? Are they for baseball or for senior softball?

Doc Swear:
I am surprised that no one has mentioned the need for a wider screen each year (for certain 3Bs)... :-)

Omar:
You make a lot of gross generalizations that seem hard to validate...
Eight fielders patrol 70,000 sf... wow! I'd like to watch them play because the guys that I see aren't close to covering all of that. And since the pitcher only has to cover 180 sf, the they should be injured 400 times more? Do you really believe that this is a valid statistic?
'all of the infielders play 5' behind the baseline'... I suggest that they don't all play the same depth and that 90% of them are further than 5'... you also say that they all cover 917 sf... so there are no 'holes' between them and they all have the same range? Again, that isn't the way that I see it. There are a few other points as well.
The fact is that they only use one ball at a time (in play)and the ball is usually hit at only one person... regardless of how much ground there is to cover.
Your premise of 'protecting the pitcher' has obvious merit but not because of the amount of sf he/she has to cover. It's because he/she happens to be closer to the batter... it's about reaction time. Second to the pitcher are the 3b and 1b (as it relates to short reaction times).
BW
May 11, 2009
Omar Khayyam
1002 posts
Yeah, wood, isn't it amazing?! Do the math. The radius of a circle is 300 feet. This results in a square footage of 281,880 square feet. One fourth of that circle (a softball field) is 70,470 square feet!

Every fair ball is fielded by SOMEONE! Either a pitcher or an infielder intercepts the ball, or it goes to an outfielder (home runs over the fence excepted). It doesn't just lie on the dirt or grass and remain ignored. No, some fielder fields every ball batted fair no matter where it is hit. So yes, they cover 70,470 square feet. (even more when the boundaries are expanded to take in foul territory)

Of course I don't believe a pitcher is injured 400 times more than other fielders because most players do not hit ground balls up the middle. But DMac thinks outfielders are never injured (I disagree), so of all all fielding injuries by a batted ball, what percentage are incurred by the pitcher versus the other infielders? I think a high percentage considering the narrow fielding range of the pitcher. We both agree it is because reaction time of the closer distance doesn't allow the pitcher to stop with his glove all shots up the middle.

In NCSSA, I have already heard this year of three pitchers injured by batted balls (not hamstrings or groin pulls or sliding raspberries, etc.). I have not heard of any infielders sidelined so far by batted ball injuries, although there may be some. Given that there are four more infielders than a pitcher, one would think there would be a number of notable injuries by the other infielders. Just an anecdotal observation, but surely with the current hot bat/ball combo, pitchers are at risk.
May 11, 2009
the wood
1087 posts
Omar:
I am not arguing with your math but rather your application of it.
Yes, every fair ball is fielded by someone but the batted ball injuries occur when there is minimal reaction time.
The underlying purpose of the PPR, as it has been stated, is to 'protect the pitcher'. Whether it does or does not has been discussed quite a bit. However large the field is has little, if anything, to do with the PPR or its stated intent.
We recently played in Mesquite and played most of our games on baseball fields. Should the added real estate have translated into more batted ball injuries for our outfielders? It did not. But it did tire them out faster... due to the field size and the altitude.
Again, I'm not disputing your calculations themselves... other than they are irrelevant to PPR concepts.
BW
May 11, 2009
E4/E6
Men's 60
854 posts
Doc, you will need more then a simple screen. I was thinking of one of those large foam #1 Hands formed into a glove to go along with the screen. Or maybe another player to front for you at third.
May 11, 2009
Omar Khayyam
1002 posts
wood, absolutely irrelevant to PPR concepts. I was primarily disputing wes's conclusions. He states that fielders get hit 7 times as often as pitchers. I maintain that considering that fielders outnumber pitchers 8 to 1, and cover 400 times as much territory, being injured only 7 times as much shows how much safer it is for them.

Mathematically, the pitcher fields in such limited confines that he should seldom be hit compared to the other fielders, but we know that is not the case because of the limited reaction time compared to the fast-moving batted ball.

I agree with many critics that the PPR as currently applied doesn't do a lot for the pitcher lying supine on the mound except give him moral satisfaction, e.g. ("the ambulance is on the way and the batter that hit you is out!"). We will be able to tell, hopefully, by the end of the season if the PPR resulted in more batters deliberately NOT hitting up the middleóthat is its only hope of effectiveness.

Don't envy you playing on hardball fields. Not only is it tiring for outfielders (nothing sweeter than having 260 foot fences behind you, as at Oakdale CA, and not having to chase a gapper into the next pasture but only to the nearby fence), but as a pitcher I hate having to back up onto a raised mound after I release the ballóit's hard to field and treacherous footing as well. And back up too far...you have a line drive skimming off the top of the mound and WHAM!
May 11, 2009
the wood
1087 posts
Omar:
Not to split hairs but your statement that outfielders cover 400 times as much ground as a pitcher is ill-based. You have tried to allocate every sf of the field (fair territory) and this isn't reality. There are open spots between the fielders (infielders and outfielders), which is the way Abner Doubleday designed it.

as it relates to the PPR a
May 11, 2009
the wood
1087 posts
Omar:
Not to split hairs but you've allocated every sf of fair territory to the 8 fielders (minus the 180 swf for the pitcher). This is not reality when it comes to either baseball or softball... Abner Doubleday designed it in such a way that the 8 fielders cannot really cover all of the ground... there are gaps and holes, etc. This then conflicts with your ratio (400 times the ground). But, in the big PPR picture, this is also not all that relevant.

You went on to mention that by year end we'll hopefully have a better idea of whether more/less balls will have been hit at the pitcher deliberately. I'm not sure how we will know this or how we can make any distinction between 2009 and 2008 as it relates to these things.
What we may indeed know is how controversial the PPR is, how difficult it is for the umpires to enforce, etc.
I hate to appear as a pessimist but I just do not know of any reliable data that we'll have by December ( as opposed to opinions, no shortage of them). I hope that I'm off base on this.
BTW, I accidentally hit the 'post message' a little too early on the previous one.
BW
May 11, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4395 posts
Omar,
You must have played on field 3 at Kerr Park, it's the short one.
Lodi is other place with short fields.
May 12, 2009
Omar Khayyam
1002 posts
taits, you're right. I had never played there before and I start the first game playing right field against a team I don't know. A more experienced center fielder waves to me to move closer. This makes me nervous because I'm not as good going back for the ball. After the inning, he explains. "So it clears your head. Where's it going to go? Another 30 feet and it hits the fence." I played in at 200 feet the rest of the game.

wood, not to get too mathematical again, but in a 300 foot field, each outfielder's piece of the pie is 118 feet at its deepest. Stationing oneself in the middle, means 59 feet to each side. That leaves some gaps, but not as much as you might think (which you quickly find out batting against a much younger team!). The closer the fences, of course, the easier the defense. Remember, for the issue of being injured by a batted ball, it doesn't have to be on the fly. At Kerr Park, playing at 200 feet, I only had to defend 78 feet, or 39 feet on each side. A great plan if it weren't for that long ball over my head!
May 13, 2009
the wood
1087 posts
Omar:
'not to get too mathematical again'... are you kidding me? You wouldn't happen to be an actuary, would you?
I don't know where you've been playing but it sounds like all of your outfielders run like Herb Washington and position themselves as chief navigators would.
I wasn't always playing 60 ball and did play against some of the very best outfielders ever (25-35 year olds)... and we didn't use 1.2 bats (there were still gappers). They couldn't/didn't cover the whole field... vertically or horizontally or, if you prefer, the 'x' and 'y' axes. There were always open spots no matter how much advanced math or trigonometry was applied.
But this thread is still about the PPR and whether an outfielder gets hit by a fly ball or one that has bounced 4 times is incredibly irrelevant... or how much ground they have to cover. If someone/anyone can cover a lot of ground on a given play and still gets hurt by the ball, a new rule isn't the solution. Teach him to catch the ball.
Perhaps you will remember that Cole Hamels (Phillies pitcher) was hit in the shoulder by a line drive 2-3 weeks ago. As far as I know, no one bothered to check the distance of the fences. Would it have mattered if he was pitching in Minute Maid Park or Citizen's Ball Park? No, the mound is still 60' 6" in both places. Most everyone agreed that it was due to his follow through and the resulting reduced reaction time and no one consulted Professor Irwin Corie on the matter.
BW
May 14, 2009
DCPete
238 posts
If they just raise the arc to 15 feet the pitcher will have plenty of time to back up and you won't need any damn screens, masks or steel-cage death matches.
May 14, 2009
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
DCPete, If I read your post correct, you stated that all the pitcher has to do is maintain the height at 15 feet, now that might help but do you have any idea how that's suspose to happen, and if he drops below 15 feet your right back where you started. Wouldn't it be easier to use a screen? For the record why are you against the use of the screen?
May 14, 2009
Joncon
289 posts
63% of all statistics are fabricated :)

Fact. At 50 feet away, the pitcher has less than a half second to react to a 100mph batted ball.

Fact. Infielders generally stand at about 70'

Fact. I have seen infielders take a bad hop but I've never seen one that didn't have time to get his glove up to defend himself.

I have witnessed three shots directly to a pitchers face and one to the back/side of his head rendering him unconscious.

Even for the best defenders, 50 feet is too damn close.


Here's a thought.

I think if you drill a pitcher, he should be allowed to taze you. We could allow them to use the defib machines that are already on site.
May 14, 2009
Ken
Men's 55
462 posts
Ok, but if he uses the taser, are you allowed to use your glove and drop back to defend yourself? I can just see the bobbin' and weavin' now, lol.
May 14, 2009
Nancy Allen
Men's 55
612 posts
If I am pitching and I get hit between the eyes and am laying there bleeding and broken on the ground with my life flashing before my eyes, 100% of the time I could care less if the batter is safe or out.

In NSA if any fielder (yes, outfielders too) gets hurt with a batted ball, we are supposed to confiscate the bat and ball immediately for evaluation by the NSA. Now the ONLY good thing about this rule is if I think they are going to take my bat, then I guess I am going to have to learn to bat somewhere else.

Joe, I can't decide if we should play Wiffle or Nerf ball.
May 14, 2009
Lecak
Men's 55
1012 posts
Nancy your making as if wiffle ball is not a dangerous sport I give you exhibit A do you by any chance remember Brett Butler the professional baseball player.

here is the link
http://armchairgm.wikia.com/Article:The_Eternal_Debate_-_Nut_Crunch_vs_Face_Plant_-_Which_is_Worse%3F_(Video_Compilation)
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