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Discussion: Seeding Criteria at Senior World Tournament

Posted Discussion
Oct. 25, 2011
rlspls1974
Men's 60
54 posts
Seeding Criteria at Senior World Tournament
Wouldn’t it make more sense for the tie breaker in round robin play to be run differential as opposed to least runs allowed?

just my opinion.
Oct. 25, 2011
SSUSA Staff
1267 posts
The current third tie-breaker priority (after "Best Record" and "Head to Head", if applicable) of "Least Runs Allowed" is based on the following rationale:

• Teams should be rewarded more for defensive proficiency (as a sportsmanship issue) in shutting down their opponent as opposed to being rewarded for putting up monster numbers just for seeding purposes in the top of the open inning against an occasionally over matched opponent; and
• There would be an inherent unfairness in going to run differential when home teams do not bat in the bottom of the last inning in a game they are leading after the trailing visitors have exhausted their last at-bat. In any game a team wins, the losing team had their full complement of at-bat opportunities.

This seeding priority policy is not likely to change.

Oct. 25, 2011
idahoreb
Men's 50
47 posts
Wouldn't it be so much simpler to do a three game seeding format and then a true double elimination tournament. The seeding criteria would be the same as now but it would be much better to know that during the bracket you lose two and you are done. In three day tournaments you could play three on the first day if there were several teams or twon on the first and one on the second if there were not a large number of teams. Just makes more sense than getting beat the first two games of the bracket and then bouncing back to play other teams that lost two. Would make much more sense.
Oct. 25, 2011
SSUSA Staff
1267 posts
For divisions that have at least five teams, the five-game-guarantee is comprised of two seeding games followed by a three-game-guarantee (3GG) bracket. This format has been used since the 2006 California State Championships and is now the SSUSA's format of choice for three principal reasons:

• The overwhelming majority of players believe the tournament doesn’t actually begin until the commencement of bracket play. The 3GG format gets the teams into the brackets earlier and keeps them there longer;
• The 3GG format requires fewer overall games (in brackets with less than 50 teams) than the three-game round robin into a double elimination bracket format. This is a critical concern in times of field availability restrictions; and
• Playing two Round Robin games into the 3GG format does not require the extra "exhibition" game for just one team in any three game round robin for a division comprised of an odd number of teams, which is that team's fourth game. Playing the “exhibition” game is almost universally opposed by managers, tournament directors and umpires, but seems generally accepted by everyone else.

Oct. 26, 2011
rlspls1974
Men's 60
54 posts
SSUSA Staff:
That was what i heard from many players this past weekend.
Regardless, great work and kudos to the Staff!
Oct. 26, 2011
DCPete
234 posts
SSUSA; with all due respect it's much better to play an "exhibition game" in the Round Robin than it is to play it in the elimination bracket. With the 3GG, ALL the teams that lose their 1st game in the elimination bracket are basically playing an exhibition game in their 2nd game.
And instead of 1 team having to play an exhibition game in odd number round-robin brackets, up to 50% of the teams end playing exhibition games in the elimination bracket!!!
Seriously, let's mix in a little math here . . .
Oct. 26, 2011
DaveDowell
Men's 60
1067 posts
DCPete - I wrote the 1,153-game schedule for this year's World Championships, so let's take a quick run at "...mix[ing] in a little math here...", using the 32-Team 50-Major as an example:

• 3 RR into DE requires 48 RR and 63 DE games = 111 Total (there would be no 'exhibition' game with an 'even' number of teams)
• 2 RR into 3GG requires 32 RR and 71 DE games = 103 Total (there are 8 more games under the 3RR/DE format)
• The Sunday schedule would remain at 11 games under either format in order to take as many teams into Sunday as possible (8) and still end with a 3:30 PM 'If game' so that teams could make flight commitments and the like.
• The remaining 100 games (111 - 11) would have to fit into Friday and Saturday. Playing all 48 RR games on Friday (3 games per team) would leave 52 games for Saturday. The 48 Friday games would fit, because that's how many were played this year (32 RR and 16 3GG games), and we would not play any DE games Friday so that each team would be guaranteed at least two games on Saturday before elimination.
• The 8 games played this year in the Elimination Bracket Saturday morning at Cesar Chavez could possibly be first round games if I were to juggle some second round games to give teams enough time to get back to Desert West. It's somewhat complex in the context of game sequencing and bracket logic, but let's assume it could be done effectively.
• That leaves the remaining 44 games for Saturday at Desert West (52 total less the 8 at Cesar Chavez), beginning at 8:00 AM and ending with the last games of the day at 11:00 PM, meaning the teams would end sometime around 12:30 AM on Sunday morning, with the survivors playing again at 8:00 AM at Desert West. This also assumes the Saturday game schedule runs completely on time.

I believe the 'math' is not in your favor this time and that it's an unreasonable burden on both the teams and the tournament administration at Desert West to do it your way. We'll be staying with the 2RR into 3GG format for the forseeable future.

Oct. 26, 2011
ShaneV
Men's 55
382 posts
I'm getting better each year at scheduling but I will never be a Dave Dowell. I don't care who you are, there cannot be a more expert senior tournament scheduler or director.

I hope immortality becomes a reality before Dave goes. Maybe we at least will be able to "download" his knowledge to a super-computer before his demise! You are the master Dave, and you know it. If you ever need help with humility, maybe I could return the favor for what you have taught me.

ShaneV
Oct. 27, 2011
rlspls1974
Men's 60
54 posts
I cant stress enough here, this was simply an opinion shared by a few players.
Great job by the entire staff.
Thanks for a great tournament. NUFCED!
now can you work on setting the tempo to about 85 degrees next year :)
Oct. 27, 2011
Pricer
Men's 50
622 posts
Tie breaker should stay the way it is. Least runs scored against. Running up a scoreboard for the sake of pouring it on, is another way to lose players and teams. When your getting your rears already handed to yourself, rubbing salt in the wound only makes it worse.
Oct. 27, 2011
mad dog
Men's 60
3937 posts
pricer yep,we had thought we needed to have a good run differential,and had to try and run the score up to make up some difference(after getting beat by a big margin)we were the visitors and they wanted us to flip-flop,when all we needed to do was just play D and settle it that way.we found out later that it was runs allowed,so we went and apologized to the team we played.i do like the runs allowed way better, so if the home doesn't get to bat in their open inning it will be fairer.
Oct. 27, 2011
DCPete
234 posts
Dave, thanks for the detailed & mathematical explanation. I guess it can work out for better or worse depending on the particular situation.
We were in a 2-day qualifier this summer when Mother Nature decided to punish everyone by making it 100+ degrees with hi humidity. After playing our 2 RR games in the morning, we started the 3GG at 3pm. Because we lost that game, we then had to play the meaningless "exhibition" 2nd game at 6pm followed by the meaningful 3rd game at 8:30. A number of guys on the team voted to forfeit the 2nd game but we decided to play anyway since we weren't sure if forfeiting would eliminate us from the rest of the tournament plus we would still have to wait around until 8:30 to play the 3rd game.
(and for the record there were open fields available during the evening so total number of games wasn't an issue)

Oct. 27, 2011
MurrayW
Men's 50
92 posts
I don't have a real strong opinion on what the tie breaker should be, but the argument that it is runs allowed and therefore that is fair because the home team may not bat in the last inning, does not take into account the advantage that gives the visiting (losing) team by not having more runs scored against them. The losing team could get a lower seed than if they had been home team instead of visitors.
Also, I see several people talking about not running up the score if they are ahead. Really? Do you make outs on purpose? With 5 run limits on innings before the buffet, I think it would be very hard to feel that any lead was comfortable to not try to add to it going into the buffet.
Oct. 28, 2011
paul0784
Men's 60
130 posts
what about having the East and West National Champs play the second game of the round robin to distinguish the USA National Champ and making the winner of the game the number one seed and the loser the number two seed and then go from there. This would maybe give more creedence to the East and West National tourneys. More teams would play in those tourneys to get that number one or number two seed in the Worlds? What do you think?
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