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Discussion: When did it all start for you?

Posted Discussion
July 20, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
620 posts
When did it all start for you?
Money, hot bat/ball combo! They're all relevant on why folks are leaving this sport. The problem is most of you want to blame one thing. Joe is all over the lively bats and balls are absolutely essential thing. He's problably right in his circle of friends. Mad dog, Gary and others feel differently, as do I. But we're not gonna solve this here. I ask this question before, but now I'll go right to the horse mouth. Joe, how often did you clear the fences with wood or aluminum bats? But let's hear some details from everyone. What era was it when you start driving the ball out of the yard? This could indicate why some folks feel a need to proceed with the present day combo. Maybe some are feeling the joy of getting large in the batters box for the first time or at least alot more often. Personaly I was hitting the ball out with wood and Hardwood CN100 on 280'-300' fields back in the day. Aluminum for me did not mean more homeruns, it just meant my bat lasted longer. It wasn't until the blue TPS that it went out more frequently. Let's hear your story? I post this as a new thread as well.
July 20, 2011
mad dog
Men's 60
3929 posts
as a youngen pricer i would put myself in the 1-15 to 20 at bats for hrs BT(before technology).not a whole lot i know,but with the hot stuff i'm up near a 50-50+ chance on hitting one out,if i really pay attention to the pitch,but i don't b/c i go up to bat with the game situation in mind,if needed i will go for it,i would rather be a high avg consistent hitter than a wanna be hr hitter.i started with wood back in the 60's and actually led a couple of my teams(in the military)in hrs using wood.same as you when going to metal in 73,the big difference i seen was the first time i used a CU-31 AL bat,in the mid 80's,i guess around 86.can't really recall the balls before the mid 80's,but did use blue and red dots from then on out,oh and an occasional grey dot.most of the fields i played on when in the military ranged from 240 to 270' back then,as they were large fast pitch fields.didn't really see 300' fields till after the mid 80's,oh played a lot on open fields(no fences),till the end of the 80's.

also pricer maybe they should let us know where in the order they bat,or feel they should.i like the #2 spot or 6-7 spots.i have batted in all of them tho,with no prol.i now mostly hit in the #4 spot for my senior team.
July 21, 2011
Omar Khayyam
986 posts
Pricer, I started with wood bats back in the 50s. That was all we had for decades and the ball wasn't as hot as it is now. But boy! did we have fun. I couldn't wait for league night or the occasional tournament. It was fast pitch for most of us back then, but slow pitch kept growing in popularity and now dominates.

I was always a pitcher and a singles hitter. I had decent speed, so sometimes batted 2nd, usually 7, 8, or 9. Fast pitch became so pitcher dominant that softball was in danger of extinction as a participation sport, so its salvation was slow pitch where most guys could hit the ball.

Fields were smaller, much smaller then because the combination of wood bats and the balls used meant that most teams didn't have anyone who could hit it over the fence, even though the fence might be only 260 feet away.

The single wall didn't have much, if any, more pop than the woodie. Its great advantage was that it didn't break. For a few seasons, my entire team got by with 5 metal bats that we all shared depending on weight.

Double walls came along and the game began to change. These bats were expensive, but ego-driven guys began to buy them. Fields were now too small; the game's pace picked up; it was rare to see a guy over 40 on a rec league team.

Then came the composite. Suddenly, I'm a home run hitter! I never hit a home run in 50 years of playing, but with my Miken U2, I can hit it over the fence! What's that all about. Last year, I batted 4th on my team and led the team in home runs. In the first 50 years, I hit only 2 or 3 triples, but with the enlarged parks to accommodate the composites, I've hit so many triples I've lost track.

I miss the balanced game of just ten years ago, even if it was pushing me with its double-wall speed. I miss guys I played with then who feel they can't defend like the old days, and whose speed is less important than a big bat (even if the hitter needs a courtesy runner). They've left the game, a game we all loved. Sad.
July 21, 2011
#6
Men's 60
1183 posts
Guys, good post. I am a line drive hitter, only occasionly will I hit one out as I don't try, I leave that uo to the big guys behind me..as for years past.when they came out with the T-4000, I WAS THE MAN.........Hit a bunch out, now days, it's just try to get on for the guys behind me.heading to College Station..all have a safe weekend !
July 21, 2011
einstein
Men's 50
3114 posts
It happened when the stopped using blue dot, good balls.
Guys went more and more for bats to make up for what cheap TD's
and Parks/Rec guys were doing trying to make/save money.
When the balls went south the batters starting looking for
and finding ways not to get cheated or punked by them.
It's that simple.
Give us back good balls and we'll swing single wall bats, again.
Why can't we have the good balls back?
What happened to them, and why???
July 21, 2011
mad dog
Men's 60
3929 posts
well pricer it figures,he did not answer the question just got back on his soapbox,to preach to his majority of one.
July 21, 2011
E4/E6
Men's 60
850 posts
For many years I swung a 38oz wood Worth Thumper, does anyone remember the Mag bat, a fiberglass stick that allowed the ball to jump off it. What a treat I thought it was to hit that one. If I had only knew.............

Joe by the way, I am feeling great but am now looking at The Winter Worlds for my return. Thanks for asking .........
July 21, 2011
einstein
Men's 50
3114 posts
The market place and it's ruthless, competitive nature
got into the balls we were using and began
driving them down and guys began countering with better bats
to keep the standard up, we'd/they'd been used to.
Hot bats began in response to being punked and cheated by
the movement to dumb down the balls.

The bats we use today were/are a response
to the balls being driven south be self interested entrepreneurs
trying to make a their mark and gain control of the marketplace.
Not a crime but an omnipresent phenomenon in a deregulating/competitive society.
Can you stay with the thinking involved with this, Spongy?
Ask OK if he'll explain it to you.

We, the players , are being ridiculed and criminalized
by a movement, witting and unwitting,
to dumb down our equipment that has
NEVER been in our best interest in the first place.
And I'm sick of it and it shows.
We love to play with lively bats and balls
just like we have since we was babies and
we're terrific athletes, people and entitled to have fun
and defend ourselves from self interested, ignorant and resentful others who can't play as well as us, now or ever.

Get it, yet, Spongy?
What did you do when the balls started going south?




July 21, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
620 posts
The Mag bat was made with Magnesium in it. I don't know how much or if all of it was produce that way. One of the first real light bats I used years ago.
July 21, 2011
GaCMan
86 posts
I can still remember the first TPS I ever swung it was like WOW!!!!! Then when the worth supercell C405 came I thought it can't get any better than this, but the balls got better too. I wouldn't mind going back to those bats as long as we went back to the hot balls too. My first home run was hit with the TPS up until then I was nothing but a base hitter could put the ball anywhere I wanted to. The home run thing was and still is addictive to me, its really hard for me I have to work constantly at not trying to just hit the ball hard with no thought other than wanting it to fly out of the park. This last yr I have seen where I think I can do my team way more good returning to that way of hitting so thats what I'm trying to do . Still enjoy hitting the occational long ball but would be more happy with the higher batting average, even so still like a good ball and bat.


KEEP IT SIMPLE, PLAY FAIR, THERE ARE ONLY SO MANY GAMES LEFT, ENJOY THE MOMENT YOU NEVER KNOW WHEN IT WILL END!!!!!!!!
July 21, 2011
frampton
Men's 55
55 posts
I had a Mag Bat back in the early 70s, liked it a lot. Until the day I got a hit and found myself holding just the handle, the bat broke off right above my hands. As I recall, it was filled with what looked like styrofoam . . .
July 21, 2011
Mario
Men's 50
369 posts
I've always been able to hit home runs. When I started playing slow pitch back in 1980 I used a wooden bat. I was the #3 or #4 hitter back then. When I made it to the super level back in the mid 80's I still hit in the same spot in the batting order. The 1st hot bat I remember was the Steel Elliott model - 34oz for me. Then came the Worth Tenn Thumper end loaded model. The I started playing for teams that were sponsored by TPS. I can remember the 1st CU31 alloy. We thought we had the best ever. WOW those were the days!!!!! All those bats I was able to hit 400 feet HR's. It was something special, now with the composites, 400 ft. hrs are more common.
July 24, 2011
mad dog
Men's 60
3929 posts
need for this to be back on the front page,come guys,let us know how you git started.

oh mario,i still have an old elliott bat,got it in 86/87 when they were touring the country,made the guy weigh them out for me so i could get the lightest one they had,31 oz..LOL....i use it for my macenko drill(light bat,heavy bat).hope to see ya again in jaks,along with your son........play on biggen...

oh my first encounter with the cu-31 was in 86,all i could do was say wow........ as i watched the ball i hit take off.
July 24, 2011
4x4
Men's 65
593 posts
Along with playing ball I was fortunate enough to play a couple of years with my Dad who was still playing at age 65 for the love of the sport - and thinking back probably still hanging in there so he could be on the same team with his son.

Now back to the original question.

Those were the days of the wood bats and I was able to go yard pretty much at will. In those days the fields were different in design and it was easier to aim for a landmark somewhere and hit the ball into or over it. Through the progression of bats up to the present day going yard has always been there.

Just getting back on the field after being on the shelf since December and out hitting again it feels good to shed the rust and once again start hitting a few 100 rounds a week. Not crazy about blowing up a couple of bats last week - but, for me it is progress.

If anything - it's really made me appreciate what we are able to do. I can't begin to tell you how good it feels to get back out on the field.

July 24, 2011
mad dog
Men's 60
3929 posts
4x4 glad to see you getting back,also didn't you have to go get a branch when you first started playing.....DOH,LOL....
July 24, 2011
4x4
Men's 65
593 posts
Yeah (chuckle) if you picked just the right sapling you could get a rock - throw it up in the air and swat it a long ways.............

That's why the CA hitters are the best - I guess you used to be able to do the same thing in TX - probably worked well there too - except you've run out of trees - you still got the pile of rocks though...........................................LOL
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