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Discussion: Timing of Tournament of Champions

Posted Discussion
April 29, 2011
Donny Boy
1 posts
Timing of Tournament of Champions
Being a Florida native and now living in snow country, I make the following recommendation based on personal observation:

The ToC should be played in early November of the year teams qualify for the tournament.

Reasons: 1. Most, if not all tournaments in November and December are open for next year's roster allowing the next crop of players to move up an age bracket. 2. Florida has very friendly weather in November...much better than the cold unfriendly February weather recently. and 3. Cold weather teams would be better prepared to play without a 2-3 month layoff due to the northern weather they live in.

This would put us all on a (pardon the pun) level playing field. So the weather is better, and the northern teams haven't hibernated yet. It's fair for all. Is that a great idea, or what??
April 29, 2011
kbl
Men's 60
529 posts
donny boy--most importantly, SSUSA has some type of agreement with cities for tournaments. mother nature was not very kind in feb. i was there his year and i agree it was a bit chilly until sat. and sun. as far as being fair, if you check all he winners, you will see it came out 9(cold states) and (9 warm states). i think that is pretty good. IMO. thanks, ken
April 29, 2011
wagon487
Men's 50
524 posts
LOOK!!!!!! A dead horse, let's beat it! Just busting your chops:)
But seriously,
This has be talked about adnauseam. It's all about contracts that have been signed and are in place. And if you look at the winners of the TOC, over 50% are from cold weather states. This year, a team from MD won the 50 majors with a team from NJ coming in second. A team from NJ won the 55 Majors. I'm sure Dave and the boys have the stats.
April 29, 2011
ChiPrimeMarty
Men's 55
66 posts
Even a dead horse needs to be resurrected once in awhile if the corpse still stinks -- and the Polk County weather usually stinks in February. 2011 had cool temps, but 2010 was miserable and wet -- we were rained out on Friday and game temps at 8am Saturday hadn't crossed the 40 degree threshold.

I'd much prefer early November, a couple weeks before the beginning of the next season at Fort Myers. Contracts aren't chiseled in stone, and in a player-driven sport like Senior Softball I think player input should be considered.

Don't let a few busts in the chops deter you donny boy -- I'll grab a bat and beat that dead horse with you!
April 29, 2011
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
To Wilber:
Contractual arrangements are the 'explanations' we have received on this but as you say, I think not in stone.
Weather should be considered a major factor as well as economic cost in these times. Perhaps if Polk county demands a T, then throw another and call it Mickey Mouse. No wonder they only have about half of the invited or qualified teams attend.
Players should have and do need more say especially when the teams are and have been needing additional players to make up for age and team moves in the four month or so dead time as it were.
Cold weather is risk to bats used below 65 degrees. But I am sure they know that and might even count on it for their sponsors sake.
Mr. Ed
lol
April 29, 2011
ChiPrimeMarty
Men's 55
66 posts
If changing the timing of TOC is impractical because of the timing of other major tournaments in the late fall, how about changing the location?

The biggest complaint I have is the weather. Being from Chicagoland I'm used to cold temps in our local park district fall leagues, but given the travel expense and the prestige of a Tournament Of Champions, I think a little warmth with less chance of rain is called for.

As taits pointed out, a lot of invited teams don't show. Also, the Friday night banquet the last two years was c-c-cold ... people just arriving were turning around and leaving when they saw the "inside" banquet was merely an open hangar.

The banquet is relatively unimportant, but (for my players at least) TOC is something special and it sure would be nice to have nice weather and not break our best bats competing against the best teams.

The outfield grass at Loyce Harpe Park was an uneven patchwork of vegetation that led directly to my #3 hitter severely straining a knee tendon. He was done on Saturday morning, and is still recovering.

Fields can be improved, but mother nature is a roll of the dice with not very good odds for February in Polk County.
April 30, 2011
Jawood
Men's 50
798 posts
Another old argument. Our teams stance is if the TOC was in November, we would consider going, in February, after not picking up a bat for 3 1/2 months, no way.

Dave has explained the reason why it is the way it is and has to do with money mostly, surprise! Sure would be nice to figure out how to change it.
May 1, 2011
tg69
307 posts
Sure its about money but without player participation there would be NO MONEY so its time to do what the players want.The way the economy is now may be the right time to make these changes.I,for one,may not even have another chance to go to another TOC,but if I did and it is still in Feb.will not go.
May 1, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
I thought I read that this year's TOC had 'record participation'. So apparently, whether they like the time of year/location or not, teams showed up and paid up.

If guys are willing to pony up no matter if they like what they are purchasing why would the seller change anything at this time?
May 1, 2011
tg69
307 posts
Take a survey of those who went to the TOC this year and see if they were happy with their product.This being weather(frost on the ground for 8am games)field conditions and playing conditions.Other than the winners,I bet you would get an unfavorable from the majority who attended.Oh,and dont forget that great indoor luncheon at 40 degrees,that was really special.Ive got my spurs on but this dead horse still wont go.Any suggestions???????????
May 2, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
You might very well be correct. I was just referring to a number of posts people were making back in the winter defneding the time of year.
May 2, 2011
tg69
307 posts
For any of you not happy with the timing and dates of the TOC ,well you might as well get used to it ,at least until 2016,thats how long the contract with Polk Co. is for(per Dave)So get out your shovels and start digging and bury that dead horse because its starting to smell.You young guys need to start working on it now if you want change,by 2016 ill be to old to care.
May 2, 2011
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Given the fact that the TOC has changed months before where is the honest reason for not having it earlier or at least within one month of the "last" T for the season.
I know the admin likes it there & then because of the sponsors which is reasonable. but the concerns for the players who are actually the bread and butter for it all should have more of a say.
Perhaps having a BBQ outdoors in 50 degree weather is a blast.
So contracts can change, do change almost yearly.
Anyway, if you go, you know what to expect, or you did not plan well and do your homework. so its on the shoulders for those who do plan to go.
But after 4 months of not playing or thereabouts,,,not wise. imo
May 2, 2011
dandy47
Men's 60
12 posts
Our team has gone to the TOC 3yrs,now. Myself and several of my teammates,after this year, have decided we will not go again as long as it's in February no matter how many times we qualify.
May 2, 2011
grumpy55
Men's 60
102 posts
We also have gone 3 times and qualified last year but did not go because of the weather the year before. We will probably not play in any toc qualifiers this year because we will not go back until something changes and we are able to qualify again. We all want to play ball as much as we can, but maybe if teams don't plan on going, don't play those qualifers. Maybe it will force them to look at it more closely. It would be more money out their pocket. Just my lonely opinion.
May 2, 2011
Omar Khayyam
999 posts
I see the power of the Polk County contract, and also see the superior logic that a national TOC should be held with existing qualifying teams, not months later when teams have reformed, added, subtracted, changed age grouping, etc., not to mention playing in winter after weeks of snow and harsh weather have limited practice or league play. Why not keep the Polk County contract, change the tournament in February to "Winter Nationals" or "Pre-Season Championships" or some other title and start a new TOC in Florida/Arizona/southern California in early November.
May 2, 2011
taits
Men's 65
4387 posts
Omar, its been brought up before but thats too much of a simplified resolve....
Perhaps too many go see Mickey & Minnie Mouse while there.
lol
May 3, 2011
garyheifner
361 posts
I like Omars comments. We have qualified a number of times. One year it was so cold, we went to every store in the lakeland area to buy long underwear and they were all sold out except for XXX. Another year some of our key players, who were were going to drive down from the Chicago area, were snowed in by a blizzard and never made it. Hurt our chances to compete/win. The TOC is a nice cash cow for Polk county. Contracts can be amended and changed. No reason that the TOC couldn't be played in Nov. the same dates as the winter Nats and come back in early Dec. for the Winter Nationals. I know some will say what about Christmas. You will still have weeks to get ready and buy gifts that will be in a garage sale a year or so later.
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