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Discussion: Regarding "To Screen or not to Screen"

Posted Discussion
May 2, 2010
Rod Sweet
Men's 70
53 posts
Regarding "To Screen or not to Screen"
Presently their are 103 replies to this subject and if you were to see them for the first time it would take to long to read and follow what is being stated.
There is a lot of BS in some of those replies, I would imagine that their are only a few pitchers that have commented and the rest seem to like to use their keyboard, my understanding of the use of a screen is for safety and safety only. It seems a lot of comments are related to every thing but safety. Let's look at it this way no screen being used pitcher gets hit (dies) now all parties are concerned with safety, why wait,lets do something now.
May 2, 2010
Jawood
Men's 50
788 posts
That is the bottom line, Rod.
May 2, 2010
Capt Kirk
400 posts
I will agree, lots of ammuno being fired to divert attention away from the real issue, safety. Hopefully we don't lose another fellow senior softball player(pitcher)because we were so self-absorded that we didn't act to prevent it.
May 2, 2010
stever
Men's 65
61 posts
There is already a solution to the safety situation. "Armor up". Catchers have been doing it for years in fastpitch and baseball and it works. I caught fastpitch when younger and took many shots off the mask, chest protector and shin guards. Still hurts, but does little damage. Pitchers already have that option but most refuse to use it. The arguement that it will take away from their mobility is a load of crap. Ask a catcher. In fact, they might just become better fielders once they get used to it because it will take away some of the fear factor. And the balls aren't going back up the middle any faster than a baseball pitcher can deliver a pitch. So armor up...it won't change the rules or the way the game is played, but will create the safety.
May 2, 2010
Capt Kirk
400 posts
So far we have four (4) posts that agreed that pitcher's safety is an important issue. I would also expect that SSUSA, SPA, or any other Senior Softball Association or league would want to ensure a pitcher's safety.
Git er done!!!
May 2, 2010
Punch
Men's 60
12 posts
I vote for the use of a screen to protect the pitcher. Also, require that the pitcher get fully behind the screen, upon release of the ball, for maximum protection. Then after the batter has batted the ball, the pitcher is free to cover any base that is necessary,backup any throws, and/or relays. As for the batter, each time that his batted ball strikes the screen...He gets a call strike. With any combination of three strikes leading to an out. This will fully protect the most vulnerable player on the field, while still allowing the batter to use any approved bat/ball combination. I feel that this is a viable and fair compromise to the current dilemma facing the SAFETY of senior pitchers, while still allowing the hot bat/ball combo. As an alternative to the above listed... "Hit the net and get a strike", I would be in favor of calling a batted ball striking the net in any way... A live ball! This then would give a pitcher an important role to play as an active defender. The pitcher would then have to hustle out from behind the screen, retrieve the ball, and make a quick and accurate throw to get an out.
May 2, 2010
SALSAKID49
Men's 55
110 posts
I vote for the screen to protect the pitcher also. but make it Hit the net and it's foul... and the next batted ball gotta be fair...
May 2, 2010
Steve in Davis
4 posts
An interesting post for sure. I am a pitcher. This is my 20th year of playing senior softball and yes, it is more dangerous than in my previous years of softball because of the bats and ball combinations we are using these days. I am no different than any other senior player though because I want to use the hottest bat I can legally use and of course I want the liveliest ball as well. But, I do recognize that it is getting more and more dangerous as my reflexes slow and the balls keep coming faster and faster. But still, I am not in favor of a pitching screen in a tournament ball game. One of the real joys of being a pitcher is playing defense, snagging a hot grounder, starting a double play… these are plays that pitchers live for… and all that goes away if there is a pitching screen. You can say all you want about the pitcher being able to back up plays but it doesn’t equal the joy of playing defense. Also, pitching around the corner of a pitching screen is just no fun at all… pitch and duck, pitch and duck… what fun is that?

My solution: Back off on the bat design combinations a bit so that the pitcher has better odds of survival. Because lets face it, it is a matter of odds, a 3rd baseman can also get hit and hurt from the batted balls (as can a first baseman), less likely but yes it can happen, it’s just a matter of odds. There would still be enough people who can hit home runs and the game would still be dominated by offense. Just mho.
May 3, 2010
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
Capt., the "real issue" is that the oldest/slowest/worst eyesight group playing softball today are the ONLY ones legally allowed to use the hottest/special bats.

Pretty silly!
May 3, 2010
Webbie25
Men's 60
1956 posts
Back off the bats a couple notches and play ball. Screens are good for rec league, but I believe competitive guys want to play the game-not hide behind a screen. If we are going to use screens, just put in a pitching machine. Can't you just see it now---some of the best pitchers defensively in our game feeding a pitching machine and hiding behind a screen? It almost always throws strikes and would speed up the game. Then hitters could also look for the same pitch every time and the elusive 1.000 batting average may be closer to 'reality'. Have we gotten soooooo spoiled by the bats we can't get back to sanity?
May 3, 2010
einstein
Men's 50
3114 posts
Punch,
I agree.
A ball that hits the screen should be a strike not a DBO.
Screens bring the safety that some seem
to crave and by giving the middle back
to the best hitters will increase the enjoyment and performance of many players.
May 3, 2010
Dirty
Men's 50
1375 posts
And it takes the middle completely away from the defense. And since the game is 1/2 offense and 1/2 defense, the net gain is a big ZERO!

Just do the math.
May 3, 2010
curveball
Men's 65
400 posts
Wrong again "special filth". Slowpitch softball is not 1/2 offense and 1/2 defense. Good teams in SSUSA hit at a .750 to .800 BA, making the defense only 20-25% successful maximum.(even getting 3 outs per inning is a stretch, more often than not, 5 runs are scored before the "super defense" can record the outs) There is no defense for a base hit! The equalizer is the 5 run rule.(there is no equalizer for a great defense!) Offense wina a very high majority of games, a "special defense" will save a game for you every now and then.
There is no math to do in offense vs. defense, trying to do so would only be done by a ZERO.
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