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Discussion: SPA approves Ultra II

Posted Discussion
Dec. 29, 2005
The Pro
81 posts
SPA approves Ultra II
The SPA responding to their own country wide survey is giving Senior Players what they want and have approved the Ultra II for 2006. This will also include the switch to a 44/375 ball. The ball manufacturer has not yet been determined.

Kudos to Ridge and his organization for once again listening to the Players and responding to their wishes!

To my knowledge this makes the SSUSA, LVSSA and SPA the only softball associations allowing the use of the Miken Ultra II. The other organizations should take heed!
Dec. 29, 2005
STONEMAN
Men's 50
535 posts
Great news Gary. But, a 47 cor ball w/ a 375 comp will be more consist. This comes from Decker, Worth, Dudley, & others that have safety concerns. Now, can we get the 50 & 55 SPA Worlds in April or mid Sept.? When it is not so hot & humid. Good luck, w/ yer 60 Major Plus team.
Dec. 29, 2005
BruceinGa
Men's 60
2581 posts
I'm disappointed in this news. I really like using the 1.20 bats and a 47 cor ball.
I guess we'll have to stock up on U2's.
Dec. 29, 2005
TexasTransplant
Men's 70
406 posts
If this is true, I'm sorry to hear that Ridge caved on this. What is the point of dumbing down the ball so we can hit it with $300 bats.
Dec. 30, 2005
Airbosn
Men's 65
319 posts
Atta-Boy Ridge. As for thew 44/375 ball, us guys in Pensacola have been using the Shark, Rock and Evil 44/375 for years with excellent results. I believe Ridge will use quality balls.
Dec. 30, 2005
cpope
Men's 60
160 posts
I agree with Bruce and TT, why use the U2 if you have to hit real chitty balls, an EST and a good ball is a lot more fum. JMO
Dec. 30, 2005
crusher
Men's 70
380 posts
I really do not like this if true. I just sent an e-mail to Ridge, below is a copy of it;

Just read a post on ssusa that SPA is allowing the Ultra II. Is this true?
If true, WHY?
Your tournaments are huge and good. And, 98% of us old guys do not and can not afford to buy Ultras.
If we can continue to play in your org we will be playing for second or 5th because a few teams will all use UII and we will have to hit a mushBall with bats not so good.
If I want to use UII, then I can play ssusa and not SPA.
Again, most of our bats will not hit the 44/375 ball very far. Now you will have a 200' game.
Is this your purpose?
Dec. 30, 2005
Nancy Allen
Men's 55
588 posts
ISA also allows Ultra IIs in senior play only. This is what FHC games run under. I would find it hard to believe that SPA changed their rule about twenty days after the date of a survey, but I guess that anything is possible. The survey had five items: 1 Bat Policy, 2. Balls and Strikes, 3. Player Participation Rule (65+ Teams Only), 4 Umpires, and 5. National Tournament Selection Process. We FAXd ours back on the 19th because the letter said that they were relocating on the 15th and waited until the date that they said everything would be up. I think that it probably hurts SPA not to allow the UIIs when the others do, and maybe that is what the survery answers reflected.
Dec. 30, 2005
sjuhoops
123 posts
good morning crusher. the 44 375 that ssusa and lvssa uses is awsome. i believe ridge intends to use one of those. the lvssa ball(shark) imho is better than most if not all 47 525(excluding the 525 shark) balls available. Our team kidz4ever 60 major plus tested many balls for our lvssa tourney and the shark was the best by far. If ridge uses one of these you will not be dissapointed.
Dec. 30, 2005
BMoney
37 posts
If it is true,how come they did not put some big blog on their website?Because this is BIG news in the Senior softball world.Where did this info come from?

B
Dec. 30, 2005
crusher
Men's 70
380 posts
sjuhoops. Thanks for the comment.
Our league uses the 47/525 Worth +3 ball and it is a great ball. The ball can be hit out with several bat brands or a hot liner deep.

However, The only good (imho) 44/375 balls I have hit is when using a UII. With all other bats forget it. I agree the initial speed is like a rifle, but after some air time the ball drops a parachute (or so it seems).
It maybe that I do not have the stroke or the 44/375 balls I have hit were the sorry ones.

Hey, Have a great new year.
Dec. 30, 2005
crusher
Men's 70
380 posts
Below is the response I just got from SPA. I want to say Thanks SPA for responding and letting us know it is true (UII) and letting us know why they made this decision. I just wonder who and how many people they ask if they wanted the UII.
______________________

FROM SPA
Thank you for your response. Ridge sent a survey out regarding
the bat and balls and 68% wanted to use the Ultra II. This is
going to be a test year for using this bat and ball.

SPA tries to listen to the players and give them what they want. After
the vote was in, Ridge decided to try it for 1 year.

Again, we appreciate your comments and will take them under advisement.
Dec. 30, 2005
TexasTransplant
Men's 70
406 posts
Crusher,

I know I wasn't surveyed. It sounds like you weren't either. I don't know of anyone who participated in the survey.

Looks like we're supposed to try this for one year; so if you don't own a UII, you'll have to buy one or risk being underarmed, but you have no assurance that you'll be able to use it in the future. I guess I'll just add a new bat each year to my softball budget (except for food, housing, and health insurance, it's already my biggest expense).

One of my concerns, in addition to the cost, is some of the rule changes I hear being suggested in the interest of safety, particularly the pitcher's halo.
Dec. 30, 2005
Nancy Allen
Men's 55
588 posts
Wow, that is an awful quick turnaround on changing a rule. The survey went to the coaches. According to the way it is written, if Option 2 was selected, the Ultra II, Synergy SCX2, and Genesis SB34 would be allowed. We sent ours back to SPA. I hope we were not the only ones, or we might have a lot of explaining to do. Happy New Year.
Dec. 30, 2005
BruceinGa
Men's 60
2581 posts
I faxed my replyl to the survey a couple of weeks ago. I voted for Option #1, Maintain the current 2005 SPA bat list.
Also in the survey:
Whether or not to start with a 1 and 1 count, allow 65+ teams to use 11 in the field, 2 ulmpires in pool play and prefrences as to what we want in a National Tournament.
I enjoy playing SPA and this won' t change my opinion much. I am trying to think back, it seemed like the reason SPA excluded the U2 was because of liability. Does anyone else remember this?
Dec. 30, 2005
william wallace
42 posts
Here are a couple of things to think about on this. 1. The 47/525 softball will be very hard to get this year. Very few ball companies are making this softball. 2. Trump, Dudley, Decker, and Worth got busted for ball violations. Trump Dudley, and Worth softballs measured to be 11.5 inch to 11/75 inches round and Decker got busted because their 44/375 were tested to be too hot. These might be the reason for the test year for the U2.
William
Dec. 31, 2005
Dabigdawg3
67 posts
I like the rule......and the Ultra II makes it more fun, even with bad balls!

I say if you dont like it.......there are other tourneys to play in.I for one am Very Pleased with the results from players who want it........you just cant make everyone happy!
Dec. 31, 2005
JTS2
Men's 55
88 posts
It is not good for softball when 90% of the players use the same bat in tournaments. Other bat companies will not make a new bat that is illegal in most associations. This will make the U-II the only bat you can use to be able to compete. I don't like spending $300 for a bat I know will break after 200 swings for the average player. I guess there are more players willing to spend the big bucks to compete rather than hard work. The U-II is a lazy mans way of hitting.
Dec. 31, 2005
mort
Men's 70
31 posts
JTS2:

Actually its a perfect world if everyone would use the same bat(no matter which one) then the abilities would come thru and you would not have to worry about whether you were rich enough or smart enough to figure out which bat is best. Food for thought?

Mort-65+
Dec. 31, 2005
william wallace
42 posts
Not trying to be a smart azz but everyone keeps saying the U2 is a $300 bat and that is not true. You can buy them for $185 to $199 and Miken is making more.

Which is worst the new rule for Spa or showing up in the Texas heat and hitting 44/375 softballs? Ridge has always used good softballs but if they are not going to be made anymoe he has to go with what is. So everyone shows up and hits the 44/375 and then everyone complains because the Texas heat killed the compression of the ball. At least this way you get to use the best bat possible.

I just wish Easton still made the 1st batch Synergy. Not the one with the USSSA stamp on it. That way Miken would have a bat to compete with.
Walliam.
Jan. 1, 2006
turn2
484 posts
Texas Heat,
just think the 47/525 was not flying out of the ball park this past year. so in july, when it is a 100 degrees the 44/375 should be verrrry soft. will the ultra even hel with this hot weather? wee will see in july.
later,
donnie
55 major plus
Jan. 1, 2006
jah#4
Men's 55
551 posts
Sorry to hear Ridge's change but we just order 15 new Ultra II from Miken. the 375 44 core ball will not hold up to the Texas heat is one thing. But we will see how it holds up In march in Montgomery Ala. Last year with the 47 core ball the HRS where flying out. will update everyone in Mar. one the U II and the 44
Don Ward
Miken/Old South/STW
Jan. 2, 2006
Gary Heifner
248 posts
I think this is great news. I think it is great when you work out year around and hit a ball on the screws, you might be rewarded with a HR. The Ultras are not a $300 bat. $199 delivered from Kelly's Sports who will sell this bat only to seniors. The comment that it is a 200 or 300 swing bat are not true. I have broken "2" since they came out. That is thousands of hits on both before they cracked. If they do crack fill the crack with 2 part apoxy and use them for batting practice. I have gotten more milage out of the U2 than any other bat I have owned. Also, the claim that with a U2 everyone hits Hrs at will is very false. In the 60AAA level and two nationals I played in last year, only a select few men on each team hit it out. I saw only one guy hit more than one in a game. I play on the Chicago Classics 60s White. As I have stated before, we have 8 very accomplished singles hitters and none of those guys have come within 20 feet of a fence over the last 3 years. The U2 does not make you an instant Hr threat. It does make the outfielders play a respectable depth and singles hitters will be rewarded with more singles. Enjoy this bat and next year.
Jan. 2, 2006
jah#4
Men's 55
551 posts
Gary 19
No it not good our game lasted 2 hrs each but the weather was in the 50's at night and low 70's in the day. the 47 core ball was alive and going far. we also played with the same ball in the 90's and it didn't go to good. for all of us single hitters it will not change our hitting style it will be alot od adjustment for those border line HR hitters. It will show up in Ala. in Mar. But it will allow the ture HR hitter like Patty Mac, Curt Hollis, Charles Wright, and Clatter toshow what a hr looks like. But it will also take the air out of alot of Maybe HR hitters. We have played in ISA and Other organization that allow the Ultra II and it will limit the HR's in Hot weather, As far as cooler weather I might even sneak one out. But it will depend on which 44/375 ball that Ridge picks out also. The Trump or one like that will not affect anything but the Miken sales they will sky rocket.
Don
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