http://www.seniorsoftballstore.com

 
SIGN IN:   Password     »Sign up

Message board   »Message Board home    »Sign-in or register to get started

Online now: 0 members ; 9 anonymous
Change topic:

Discussion: Pitching rubbers

Posted Discussion
Sept. 25, 2011
coop3636
58 posts
Pitching rubbers
Just looking for comments.
I am a pitcher and I believe they should get rid of the pitching rubbers.
You usually get to pitch up to 5' back anyway, so why keep something that is an obsticle in front of you.
I don't mind getting hit at (I actually like the action) but raised rubbers worry me more than anything. You can't defend against them. Even slow hit balls are dangerous.
My idea is just to mark it with caulk and play ball.
Please lets hear what others have to say.
Thanks
Coop3636
PS I know the caulk will be gone asap, but I don't know of any pitchers that want to pick in front of the 50' mark anyway, so it shouldnt be a problem.
Sept. 25, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
3949 posts
good idea coop,but you will always have some erasing the line like they do the box now so they can move even further back then the 56'. there are some that would move up a bit to get the ball to the batter quicker to hopefully mess with a batter's timing.i always attempt to bury the rubber by covering it up with dirt,sometimes the ump's let it go,sometimes not.....
Sept. 25, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
The chalk would last 2 innings, maybe. Then what would you do?
Sept. 25, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
Senoir ball are not the only ones using the fields. We might be the smallest user group for that matter. Not cost effective. Might be more cost effective just to add another rubber 6 feet behind the other, that way it is easier to control.
Sept. 25, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
Coop, great idea. Eliminate a potential for injury.
Sept. 25, 2011
coop3636
58 posts
Pricer
The idea is to get rid of the rubbers, not add another
I have pitched on fields that have FIVE rubbers
Its crazy, but it happens
Rubbers are very easy to take up and put down, most have 3 spikes in them
I say take them up unless you need them for kids pitching.
And if the caulk lines get erased, so be it. I think it is better for a pitcher to get away and pitch a little further back and a pitcher having to worry about getting cut up when the ball hits the rubber

...and mad dog, I ALWAYS cover up the rubber just so I dont have to see it..lol
(BTW I have been pitching for over 30 years)
Sept. 25, 2011
Omar Khayyam
1003 posts
coop, I agree with you. Get rid of the rubbers in front of the pitcher—they are dangerous and not necessary for slow pitch. Of course chalk will be erased after a couple of innings, but your argument is sound that no one wants to pitch closer anyway. It's actually pretty easy to rechalk a rubber when it is already partially present—could be done between innings.

Heard that in one park with artificial turf they still had a raised rubber! And no dirt to soften the lip. Danger, danger, danger.
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Omar, rechalked by who? The ump? Good luck with that. The grounds crew that sits all game by the tarp? LOL

Can anyone tell me how long the pitching rubber has been part of the field/game?
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
Coop, I'm not sure what fields you've been playing on but almost all complexes do NOT USE THE 3 SPIKE RUBBERS. Those are used for rec parks and such where they have multi purpose user groups. Most parks have permanent rubbers in place installed just like the home plates. Do you think any of this is even logical? Let's just change the rules & spend the complex owners money to suit our needs & wants. Hey, we're not the major user group her people. In the big picture, they could do without senior ball at their complexes. These things you all are asking, have been a fixture in our game, before you & I started playing. Changing the game anymore and we'll have to call it UTBSL (Used To Be Softball League). If everyone seems so disappointed in the game, rules and equipment, why play? Quit and find something less dangerous or strenuous. JMO
Sept. 26, 2011
Webbie25
Men's 60
1994 posts
Coop-I have been lobbying USSSA, ASA, and SSUSA for 20 years to do away with that useless piece of hard rubber in our game. The bases go in and out, why not the rubber? The only function in our game it to deflect balls into the pitchers face-or worse. It wouldn't take that much to create a rubber that is removable, just like the bases. You could put those little green things that look like a tuft of grass out there to mark the spot.(Don't know what they are called).
And, come on Gary, we all know it was for fast pitch way before slow pitch became popular. And, I never saw a fast pitch pitcher retreating behind the rubber in case the batter crushed it up the middle. They were more interested in jumping down your throat, and releasing the ball from 35 feet--with a push off the rubber (Reason for the rubber that does not exist in our game). It would not change our game one little bit.
Sept. 26, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
Pricer, the fields where the rubber is buried and permanent are not the ones that are a problem. This is an easily fixed safety issue, not what you call our needs and wants.
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
OK cal50, if it's just an easy fix, why has it not been done? I have been involved at multiple complexes over the years and it's more detailed than you know. Grab a shovel or better yet offer to pay for the changes. Also the ones buried are just as much a problem. The problem is the maintenance before and after the games are played and the cost that maintenance. Just like the batters boxes, which in most cases are valleys or sink holes to stand in. I've been there and done that. I tried to make a park as user friendly and safe as possible. Forget it, can't charge enough money to make the field of dreams. Everyone wants the champagne on the beer prices. Maybe a senior softball association should buy a complex and institute all of these suggestions and then watch the entry and registration fees climb upwards some more. Better yet, how would you make this easy fix?
Sept. 26, 2011
hitman
Men's 65
309 posts
Here's one that happened to me caused by the rubber.

ASA Nationals 2008 against Southland Log Homes, 52 hopper and I'm back pedalling and have to come forward in a hurry, just get to mound and start to reach for ball when it comes up and whacks me good. Used butterfly strips and did 4 more games but we came in second. Was told I looked like a turkey gobbler with the blood dripping strips hanging of my chin. You know the guys who were laughing and trying to keep me up.
I also had one in Dalton last weekend hit by Mad Dog that hit the corner of the rubber which was sticking up more than an inch and went high over my head to the outfield.

As per a quote "Mr Ballfield get rid of that dam Rubber"
or at least make it so it can be covered without a big hump. Definetly a safety concern for pitchers and yes it's it's unusual but I have a friend that was hit back in the 80's from a ball off the rubber and he's still having problems.

JMHO
The Hitman
Sept. 26, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
Pricer, No one even once asked for a field of dreams, simply something to make it more safe for the pitcher. No one asked for champagne, nor asked for a unique complex. I don't see as you say, "all of these suggestions", this thread is about 1 thing, safety because of something that could affect the bounce of a hit ball, and the OP was asking for input. Not sure why you are trying to insinuate everyone else is stupid and trying to change the game for bringing it up.

Perhaps put 4 of the thin wires with small white flags in the ground to outline the box. If the ball would hit any of them, would not be change the course of the ball.

I am sure there are some other things that would work.

You have no idea that I do not know about how detailed setting up a complex is.

Fixing the batters box is an easy fix.
Sept. 26, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
3949 posts
i play in a complex that does change it rubbers for the different tourneys it has(most fastpitch they need to change for).i see no prol with changing with them,and they use the big buried type.what is so hard about using the thin 3 stake type that can be pounded into the ground,all you need is a 1 1/2" trench dug to put it in.use that for slowpitch as we don't need to push off it to pitch in slowpitch.oh i have seen it done on some fields i play on,and they 3-4 rubbers to accommodate all play.

batter boxes would a one time fix,use the batter's box mats they have and bury them a couple of inches down and they'll be could to go for a long time,thus saving money on maintenance there.so all these money spending things that you say need to be done,can be done and save money in the long run.

also by the way there is no such thing as senior only complexes,all age groups play on all the fields i have ever played on.


hitman that was a bad thing,scared the crap out of me when it happened.i pitch against the kids a lot and i am constantly covering up the rubber.
Sept. 26, 2011
Webbie25
Men's 60
1994 posts
Gee mad dog-no wonder you want safer balls the way you go after pitchers!!!!! LOL-could not resist!!!!
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
I kind of hate all this crap about safety when the biggest safety issue in senior softball is the bats, and VERY few want to eliminate those.

Can anyone spell hypocritical?
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Just wondering. Who on here was concerned about the rubber in the 60s and 70s? I think it was there, at least on the fields I played on.
Sept. 26, 2011
hitman
Men's 65
309 posts
Gary19,

Do you still play with a wood bat?
If not point that finger at yourself.
Can you spell hypocritical?

The Hitman
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
No I don't, and I am not hypocritical at all.

I have never once asked for, or supported, PPRs, screens, looking like a hockey goalie, second home plates, plastic spikes, safety first bases, run limits, time limits, home run limits, pitcher's boxes, or removing the rubber. NEVER!

Get rid of the special bats if this is what we get with them, but the bats are fine if it would not mean any of this stuff.
Sept. 26, 2011
Webbie25
Men's 60
1994 posts
Gary-to be honest, I have since 1978 when I saw a ball go off a rubber and hit a pitcher in the face resulting in a basically destroyed face and I realized it was unnecessary in slow pitch.I was a baseball pitcher so I know how to use it to pitch, but it is unnecessary in our game. PS There were no hot bats or balls back then. While I agree with some of your reasons not to change the game, I think you are way off base this time. Far enough to be 'picked off'.
Sept. 26, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
3949 posts
webbie,i had to get his attention,so i would be pitched cookies for the rest of the game.....

i have seen plenty of injuries before the composite came out.have you watch the WSL majors play,most all of them wear a helmet when pitching.

if your not using the wood bats then your also part of the problem(hypocritical),so don't point a finger as you have 4 pointing back at you..........

also everything you have pointed out is done in kids ball and they don't use the "SPECIAL BATS".
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Mark, to be honest with you I have been pitching since 1975 and to the best of my recollection have seen only one ball noticeably deflect off the rubber. And never saw anyone get his because of a deflection.

I don't care if it is eliminated, though just keep in mind it will be a free-for-all on where pitches are delivered from since a chalk line will NEVER work as a replacement.

My only point is that anyone advocating removal of the rubber for safety reasons, yet want to keep the special bats, are hypocrites. Very plain, very simple.
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
They are also MUCH younger than us and accordingly hit the ball MUCH harder than us. That is a condition of age/strength/flexibility, NOT technology.

Or they would if you took away the special bats.
Sept. 26, 2011
Omar Khayyam
1003 posts
Pricer worries about how difficult it is to improve the pitcher's rubber so it is safer. I'm thinking of the evolution of the actual bases. Remember when they were sacks? Then tied-down sacks. Then bags that stayed out all night? How they would get torn and trip you or get slippery after a rain? Eventually bases evolved into an all-weather base that could be easily inserted into the ground, even moved from 60 to 65 to 70 feet for different users.

There are so many good suggestions above for a safe pitching rubber. Why mock them with a tirade about changing the game or wanting champagne. Bases have evolved to become safer, easier to install, more efficient, longer lasting, etc.—why not the same consideration for the pitching rubber. We all know pitchers who have been plunked by the front edge of the rubber despite their skill or alertness as a fielder. Why not make a simple improvement. It's only fast pitch that needs a firm rubber to launch from.

And Gary, I've pitched since the 50s, and have ALWAYS been concerned about the rubber, especially poorly installed ones that are too high from the ground. I've prematurely worn out lots of cleats trying to smooth out the area with dirt. I now find myself stepping back diagonally on a guy who likes the middle (stepping back wasn't an option when I pitched fast pitch).
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
First of don't try and put words in my mouth. I never said anyone is stupid, if I thought you were stupid I would tell you that. I asked if it was an easy fix, why is it not done? Simple, you can analyze it until your blue in the face, but it would be easier if you came up with a suggestion other than just removing them. Next we'll have pitchers throwing from second base. You want to talk saftey, fine. What is the biggest and most dangerous issue we have in the game today? Do we eleminate sliding next. More people get hurt sliding than pitchers do by balls hitting the pitching rubber. I'm not trying to indicate there are not safety concerns, but stop trying to change the game. Without pitching rubbers, how do you enforce the pitching rules that have to do with it? Right now we have an extra 6 feet. In the tourneys I been in and watched, it's more like 10' plus with some 2' plus outside of the width of the rubber.
Sept. 26, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
Your condescending post implied what you thought of those that brought the subject up.

I did come up with a suggestion.

Not sure why you exaggerate the issues, keep it simple rather than change what the post was about, safety for the pitcher. Pitchers can and in many cases have been seriously injured while pitching, that is all the post is about, how to make it safer.
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Omar, not saying it can't be a concern, but there are MANY more imperfections on the typical infield than just the front edge of the rubber.

And I completely agree, smoothing out the ground in front of you should be in the Pitching 101 handbook.

Pricer is right, in the list of "dangerous" aspects of softball the rubber is faaaaar down the list.
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
cal, you want safer, advocate the elimination of the special bats. Until you, or anyone else does that, any concern about pitcher safety is pure BS.
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
Omar, it's not the rubbers, it's the maintenance surrounding them. You can have temporary rubbers and they would work. The problem is no complex will have them because not durable enough and putting them in and out will require constant replacement. Not cost effective. Where in the hell did you see me mock someone? I mocked no one!!! So what would you do that you could take to the complexes and say, do this, it will save you money and be safer?
Sept. 26, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
Gary19 and Pricer keep changing the subject. This post was about 1 little thing that could add safety for the pitcher.

Do they always hijack threads?
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
Ok, I'll say it now. Your stupid! Answer the damn questions. Quit looking for folks to support you. Hijacking threads? Indicate after reading my post below where I hijacked the thread. Everything I say, I say with confidence and or fact. Don't insult me with your driffle. If you don't have an answer, just say it or stop posting your BS!

"Senior ball are not the only ones using the fields. We might be the smallest user group for that matter. Not cost effective. Might be more cost effective just to add another rubber 6 feet behind the other, that way it is easier to control."

"Coop, I'm not sure what fields you've been playing on but almost all complexes do NOT USE THE 3 SPIKE RUBBERS. Those are used for rec parks and such where they have multi purpose user groups. Most parks have permanent rubbers in place installed just like the home plates. Do you think any of this is even logical? Let's just change the rules & spend the complex owners money to suit our needs & wants. Hey, we're not the major user group her people. In the big picture, they could do without senior ball at their complexes. These things you all are asking, have been a fixture in our game, before you & I started playing. Changing the game anymore and we'll have to call it UTBSL (Used To Be Softball League). If everyone seems so disappointed in the game, rules and equipment, why play? Quit and find something less dangerous or strenuous. JMO"

"OK cal50, if it's just an easy fix, why has it not been done? I have been involved at multiple complexes over the years and it's more detailed than you know. Grab a shovel or better yet offer to pay for the changes. Also the ones buried are just as much a problem. The problem is the maintenance before and after the games are played and the cost that maintenance. Just like the batters boxes, which in most cases are valleys or sink holes to stand in. I've been there and done that. I tried to make a park as user friendly and safe as possible. Forget it, can't charge enough money to make the field of dreams. Everyone wants the champagne on the beer prices. Maybe a senior softball association should buy a complex and institute all of these suggestions and then watch the entry and registration fees climb upwards some more. Better yet, how would you make this easy fix?"

"First of don't try and put words in my mouth. I never said anyone is stupid, if I thought you were stupid I would tell you that. I asked if it was an easy fix, why is it not done? Simple, you can analyze it until your blue in the face, but it would be easier if you came up with a suggestion other than just removing them. Next we'll have pitchers throwing from second base. You want to talk saftey, fine. What is the biggest and most dangerous issue we have in the game today? Do we eleminate sliding next. More people get hurt sliding than pitchers do by balls hitting the pitching rubber. I'm not trying to indicate there are not safety concerns, but stop trying to change the game. Without pitching rubbers, how do you enforce the pitching rules that have to do with it? Right now we have an extra 6 feet. In the tourneys I been in and watched, it's more like 10' plus with some 2' plus outside of the width of the rubber. "

"Omar, it's not the rubbers, it's the maintenance surrounding them. You can have temporary rubbers and they would work. The problem is no complex will have them because not durable enough and putting them in and out will require constant replacement. Not cost effective. Where in the hell did you see me mock someone? I mocked no one!!! So what would you do that you could take to the complexes and say, do this, it will save you money and be safer?"
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
cal, I can think of one BIG thing that will "add safety for the pitcher". But clearly few of the insecure old guys are interested.
Sept. 26, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
I answered the question in my second post.

It appears you are too interested in hearing yourself talk.
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
This is your answer to the problem? "Pricer, the fields where the rubber is buried and permanent are not the ones that are a problem. This is an easily fixed safety issue, not what you call our needs and wants." The permament rubbers are the biggest problem cal. In 30 years of playing in these complexes, I could count on 1 hand how many were maintained properly on 1 hand. That only happened 20 years ago, now nobody does. By the way, I'm not talking. I'm typing, also I read very well and have not read were you said you answered the question.
Sept. 26, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
Was in my third post, my mistake.

"Perhaps put 4 of the thin wires with small white flags in the ground to outline the box. If the ball would hit any of them, would not be change the course of the ball."

Apparently you don't read as well as you think.
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
I read very well, but you don't seem to count very good!

"I answered the question in my second post."


"Was in my third post, my mistake"
Sept. 26, 2011
cal50
Men's 50
286 posts
That is what I meant by my mistake, I made a mistake.

But if you read so well, how did you miss my answer?
Sept. 26, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
This is going no where. I apoligize to all who had to read all this.
Sept. 26, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
cal, when logic and intelligence fail you do you always resort to petty insulting?
Sept. 26, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
3949 posts
is that why you do it,just throw any ol crap out there when you can't give a feasible answer to any question we ask.....

how about this pricer,you could install all the rubbers needed on a field with no prol,just make sure they are buried a couple of inches down,or so they will only show the top when brushed off,to me that is a great way to do it,and have seen fields that have done it, that are multi use fields(aka fastptich and slowpitch),and they worked real well.
Sept. 26, 2011
southernson
261 posts
Guys,
The worst ball to field as a pitcher is that low ground ball right at you, and yes the rubber can be a huge obstacle.

Imagine playing 3rd with the direcctly bag in front of you, yeah, right.

But pitching rubbers are usually permanently attached, so any remove for this, remove them for that, doesn't really work.

Can someone call Ron Popeil and see if we can get a better solution?

After all, we got the Pocket Fisherman, surely we could get a better....well maybe not.

Truth is the rubber is an obstacle and will always be so. I didn't mean to be funny, but even my girlfriend would agree with that....
Sept. 26, 2011
Webbie25
Men's 60
1994 posts
The pocket rubber-great idea! Does it leave a ring on your wallet?
Sept. 27, 2011
garyheifner
367 posts
Coop--back to your opening, I agree. In all our games in Dalton SPA of the 3 times I saw a pitcher take a shot that stopped the game for a minute, 2 were bad hops off the pitching rubber.
Sign-in to reply or add to a discussion or post your own message and start a new discussion. If you don't have a message board account, please register for a free nickname. It will only take a moment.
Senior Softball-USA
Phone: (916) 326-5303
Fax: (916) 326-5304
2701 K Street, Suite 101A
Sacramento, CA 95816
Send us e-mail
Senior Softball-USA is dedicated to informing and uniting the Senior Softball Players of America and the World. Senior Softball-USA sanctions tournaments and championships, registers players, writes the rulebook, publishes Senior Softball-USA News, hosts International Softball Tours and promotes Senior Softball throughout the world. More than 1.5 million men and women over 40 play Senior Softball in the United States today. »SSUSA History  »Privacy policy

Follow us on Facebook

Partners