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Discussion: Regarding equalizing teams.

Posted Discussion
July 6, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Regarding equalizing teams.
I just sent an Excel file to 27 people know are concerned or have a stake in this matter. I'd welcome comments on it here or as a reply to the email. I would gladly send to others if you leave me an address here.
July 6, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Ken Lange, your was returned.
July 6, 2009
BruceinGa
Men's 60
2665 posts
I like the idea of giving 4 runs per age group and for skill level, anything to get to play more teams.
One question is what hr rules would you use when AA or AAA play M and M+. Also, what about fears that some AA players may get hurt fielding hard hit balls?
July 6, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Answered in email, I didn't see this before that.
July 6, 2009
Sisavic
138 posts
Taits - Please send me a copy of your Excel file.

Mike
fsisavic@hotmail.com
July 6, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Mike, it's sent.
July 6, 2009
Jawood
Men's 50
798 posts
While I believe very strongly that Major-plus and Major should be combined, I do not think AAA and AA should be. There needs to be a very low level (AA) available in senior softball. Three levels would be the correct number. Major, AAA and AA.
July 6, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Jaywood,
I'd agree to that, but the fact is, it seems somewhere some of the time they end up playing against each other. Not so much the AA v M+, but I'd bet it has happened.
Look at how many tournaments big or small, (meaning qualifiers or bigger), where there are only a couple of teams entered that end up playing against each other. They "have' to mix ages and ratings to get games in. I've played in some with only 1 or 2 teams in same div. Hard to figure who will win... coin flip of what.
But I see it as only one thing from a players view point, too m any going on to at same time to bring together enough teams to fill brackets as hey should be. From a business point, besides the bad vibes it gets, more money to enable it to keep going. Loose, loose situation.
If more could be gathered like in Reno this year everyone would come out winner (if the fields are all good).
Moving the teams around again to form three divisions would be a challenge and no doubt piss many off no matter what. But I think it could work with stats to back up any move up or down. Those should be available somewhere. Even if you only go back 2 years or XX number of tournaments, it is some sort of reference as to game play.
The ratings are a problem, because there are teams listed that haven't been rated for 4-5 years in there.
Enough soap box.

July 6, 2009
Ken
Men's 55
462 posts
Taits,

My email has changed. Please resend it to klange11@verizon.net

Thanks, Ken Lange
July 7, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Ken,
You have mail.
July 7, 2009
Rip
20 posts
I think a great way to get more teams playing each other at these tournaments without different divisions having to play each other all the time would be to move the age groups from 5 years to 10. Make it 50-59,60-69, and so on.
July 7, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Rip,
It's been mentioned before.
There could be a gap of over 10 years, say 49-59+ for the 50's>59 group. . A big stretch in condition, ability and reflexes.
Not for me, even though I'll play down age wise or up ability wise.
July 7, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Yes, I know you had it 49-59, but my concern was the rest of it.
July 7, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Rip,
It's been mentioned before.
There could be a gap of over 10 years, say 49-59+ for the 50's>59 group. . A big stretch in condition, ability and reflexes.
Not for me, even though I'll play down age wise or up ability wise.
July 7, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Can't figure out how that duplicate got in there after the 1st.
July 9, 2009
armiho211
Men's 70
410 posts
MAJOR PLUS VS MAJOR- major should get 5 runs, HR'S based on major rules, then singles. MAJOR VS AAA- AAA gets 5 runs, HR'S based ON AAA rules,then singles. AAA VS AA- aa gets 5 runs, HR'S based on AA rules, then singles. the MAJOR PLUS divisions are pretty much hand picked players and in most cases stronger then a major team. MAJOR PLUS/ MAJOR teams should not play any AA teams, just too strong, somebody will get hurt, "most" AA players dont have the reflexes for balls hit by the stronger teams. my.02c
July 9, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
I might agree with it and do in just what you have written. If by the slightest chance did you consider the age brackets also? I don't think so.
Either way, I know many playing in the AA div that would go up**, but then most teams are fixed, within who they have already, who they know that would or might like to play up, where located as well as being given the "chance to play" up. Most are not given that opportunity.
** many that would, won't, because one they are in a comfort zone. I wouldn't say afraid to loose, but more likely just want to win, where they are.
I believe what has been said here by others also, you can only get better of you play better teams. You DO or CAN LEARN from them if you play that way often and pay attention.
I have what I'll call a teams rule book, I forget what it really is called but it is from a team I played against 12 years ago many times, The Bandits, they were a Nor Cal team in NCSSA, when the highest level was Majors. I doubt many teams, have team rules but its possible. They won many games. My point on that was I learned a lot from playing against them, & watching them offensively and defensively.
Players want to win, you get moved up, your chances are not as good. I say, improve on your weak spots, maybe practice more.
Injuries are usually the only time "recruits" are asked for.
One thing I really like about playing at the Huntsman Games is the open roster, a team can haul in a M+ player into a D or E team and visa versa. Controversial, I'll admit, but it goes on a lot.
July 10, 2009
Tate22
Men's 55
263 posts
Is all this talk about equalizing teams really necessary? At this level, are we here to compete or win "sure thing" rings? Jawood is exactly right - three levels per age group are enough to accommodate all levels. In my 7 years of senior ball, I've only played M & M+, so I don't pretend to speak for AA & AAA. At M/M+, the M+ level is simply not needed. It only causes needless controversy, manipulation, and serves to isolate some of the best teams in the game. THERE ARE ALREADY ENOUGH EQUALIZERS such as runs per inning and HR limits in place to allow various types (read various amounts of HR power) of teams to succeed. HR's should never be outs, but once they are used up the power teams have to match basehit for basehit. 350' singles count the same as 10-hoppers. Results from recent SSUSA worlds in 50 & 55 M and M+ support this contention. Teams that are now 50 M+ and can mash all day long DID NOT win or dominate 50 Major last year. Why do such teams need to be shuffled off stage with few teams to compete against??? Maybe the Yankees and Red Sox should be put in MLB PLUS. Not to light up the Yankee fans, but they haven't won a ring in 8 years, despite looking invincible on paper. Different style teams with far less resources have stepped up, performed, and won. Last I checked, MLB is still going strong.

It's also a mindset, to paraphrase Henry Ford, if you think you can't win you are right! Winning is about performing at game time and taking care of what you CAN control. Obsessing over the names on the other line-up card and whining for "stimulus package" runs isn't my idea competing. Taits is right, you get better by playing better teams. Everyone competing in national tournament level SR. softball has accpeted the challenge to compete with the best, or they would stay home in the local leagues. Having said that, I believe there is a place for three levels in this game, but not four. Combine M & M+, it will solve far more problems than it creates and lessen the need to conjure up equalizers. As always, JMHO

Don Newhard
Nighthawks 55 M+
July 10, 2009
Jawood
Men's 50
798 posts
Amen, Tate22!!!!!
July 10, 2009
the wood
1085 posts
Well put, Don... I wouldn't go so far as to classify you as a quick study but you have shown that you're 'educable'...
:-)
You're right on the money... so many teams want the 'convenient trip to the winner's circle' rather than working toward something really meaningful... your MLB analogy is extremely clear to objective people. Tampa Bay, who is beginning to play well again this year, proved that small market can beat tall market when it executes properly.
BW
BW
July 10, 2009
JamesLG
303 posts
Tate22:

I think you hit the topic on the nose and I think a lot of AAA teams with some pop would rather play major if they are allowed to swing away. Part of the fun is in the challenge of playing a team that may be better than you on paper. The guys who like to play down remind me of golfer who like to pad there handicap.
I don't know how the M+ teams have much fun traveling around playing the same couple clubs each tournament. Add the HR limit and you must wonder how much bang you are getting for your $.
Thanks:

James

July 10, 2009
the wood
1085 posts
James:
It seems as if there are more 'handicap padders' than true competitors. In our pre-season travels we play several 60 M teams and they play us fairly even. At the end of the day we go back to our M+ den and they go to theirs. Why? To quote Charlie Wilson, 'tradition mostly'.
When we travel around the country we usually have a good idea of who'll be there and who won't. Last year was no box of chocolates for us (M+ teams in general) because of economics and teams decimated by injuries. However, once we're there, we do know that our opponents are very competitive and weren't led there against their will. Yes, we'd like to see more teams but not if they truly cannot compete. A problem lies in determining those that CAN'T compete from those that WON'T compete. But it is the latter group that has the loudest voice.
BW
July 11, 2009
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
BW,
You might add AFRAID to compete, as another.

IE: "afraid" to loose.
July 13, 2009
Paco13
373 posts
We just played a tourney in Richmond, VA. We are a solid AAA, self funded with few small sponsors, that has won one tourney and place second in the other two. This weekend we were put on a Major bracket (not enough teams). We played to our potential and were in every game and actually beat a major team twice (not sure that they should be a major team). In reality regardless of the 5 runs equalizer we can not compete with an upper level major team. Here is my reason, as AAA team we are going to have lapses and we have one of two holes in the line up, most major teams are solid from 1-10/12 with no true deficiency in either defense or offense no holes in their armor. If we have an inning or two that do not score the 5 runs...the equalizer is gone in the first inning or so. Now everything is equal...How can I compete with my soup up Hyundai against a NASCAR ready car? Sure I will be in the race for the one or two laps… It is up to the coaches to find out who is going to be there and decide if it worth spending the money to play in a tourney that you have no chance to win...Compete sure but winning no.

PR NINJA
July 13, 2009
DCPete
235 posts
The term "Equalizer" is misleading . . . at best. If you want to call it an adjustment or handicap then so be it, but "equalizer" implies the 2 teams are now on a level playing field.
Needless to say, the 5 Runs that constiture the "Equalizer" are just a random number with no real significance when it comes to actually making the teams "equal".
Would love to know what the actual results are to date this year of all the tournament games where the equalizer has been used?
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