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Discussion: Bat Standards

Posted Discussion
Nov. 5, 2003
Mick
1 posts
Bat Standards
As a senior softball player, I fully realize that reaction times slow over the years. When you reach a point that you're no longer confident of your ability to perform at your past level of play, it's time to either retire from competitive play or join a league composed of less talented players. Starting a "wood bat" league would be another excellent option. It seems counterproductive to ask players pushing themselves to play at high levels to do so with anything less than the best performing equipment. It's very disappointing to pay $300 + for a top of the line bat to have it "disqualified" from competitive play. Many singles hitters complain that these bats are used "just so the users can hit a few more home runs". But, power is just one of the various skills used in competitive softball. Maybe the Miken bat users should complain when some of the "speed demon" runners want to be a "courtesy runner" every inning. Could we outlaw $300+ shoes? Or, maybe we could restrict gloves to a 10" length so more balls could go through for hits.

Why not ask that the various associations find more inventive solutions than just disqualifying equipment.

Nov. 5, 2003
Jim
Men's 65
9 posts
Hi Mick: Excellent post. You've made a very thoughtful case for adapting the game beyond improving the speed and distance a bat can project a ball or banning the bat. You're correct (IMO), most of us seniors are not "home-run hitters." We get great pleasure from making good contact, watching and feeling our line-drive singles and doubles "stay in the park" and help our teams be competitive, win and have fun. Mark ... Announce sign-ups for your "wood bat only" league and you can count me in.
... Thanks again for your comments ... They made me dream about a game I love. My thanks to you.
.... Keep thinking and sharing.
Jim Landis (69-AAA)
Nov. 5, 2003
Sticks
22 posts
I agree with both of you. But I am glad you are talking about a league. Because in Tourney ball there are divisions to separate the abilities of the players. Not one association does a good job at this but there is some effort put in. So I do not want to make a change like that in Tourney ball.
Nov. 6, 2003
TerryDarc
22 posts
I like the idea of evening the playing field for everyone, especially those who can't necessarily afford a $300-500 bat every couple years. A simple wooden bat ought to do that nicely.

My 70 yo team mgr opined that the 12" (women's size?) ball would be good for lessened gripping power, too.
=Terry
Nov. 6, 2003
Gary Heifner
248 posts
I remeber well the wood bat days. I also remember the 6-8 wood bats I broke each year. Will they direct what kind of wood bats are legal. Ash-Maple etc. At $60 a pop for a maple bat, that could add up over a season. I will be playing in the 60's next year and I am a speed freak. I enjoy skiing-snowmobiling etc. I also enjoy playing world class softball with the best equipment out there. I hope at least one association embraces the new technologly as did the Las Vegas tourney this year. I don't think the inventors of softball meant for it to be a game of totally dionk hitters with the outfielders playing at 190 to 200 feet.
Nov. 7, 2003
Walk
192 posts
I also remember the wooden bat days and here is what I remember. Breaking bats, playing on 275 fences, softballs that were 50 core with who knows what the compression was and so on. Lets see if I remember people complained then when guys hit the ball out that the fences were too short so they moved them back and brought in thick walled metal bats with polycore softballs. Once again people complained.

Then they moved the field of play back and technology did what we the players wanted and that was make the best equipment out there. Now that we have it we still complain. I wonder why?

We had a group of seniors try to start a wooden bat league here in KC it lasted one week. Guess what everyone found out we go old and the wooden bat no longer was fun. Base hitters did not get their hits and the two homerun hitters that played in the one game could not hit the ball 200 feet. League was cancelled the next week do to lack of interest.

Walk
Nov. 9, 2003
KillAbrew
Men's 60
55 posts
All of you complainers need to adjust. Everything evolves or it dies. We all love the game or we would not be playing. I for one am sick and tired of all the complaining. Play the game, have fun or talk to the Associations. Don't fill the boards with this bs. Mick I do appreciate in your post you referred to starting a league. But this is a Tournament board. We have been subjected to this over and over.

Nov. 12, 2003
TerryDarc
22 posts
Dear Hormone K,
I personally find that changing bat standard WOULD be evolution. Keeping the alloy bats is not evolution, but stasis. Change or die - exactly right.
=Terry
Nov. 14, 2003
KillAbrew
Men's 60
55 posts
Making fun of names is not nice T.Dork. But I do understand your theory of evolving to the past. Good idea. Please by all means use your wood bat and be happy. Just don't ram it down everybody's throats.
Nov. 15, 2003
Walk
192 posts
I must agree with KillABrew it is not polite to produce merriment of someone's name. I find it noticeably disrespectful someone would debase one self to that level because someone deviated from their perception. I believe we still have that right in this country to disagree and not be subjected to such childish antics.

Oh those good old days. I hear about them all the time and yet what so many people remember as being good old days were in reality no so good. Hell if we what to go back to the good old days then lets just go back to the beginning and revive the 1860s when baseball and softball became games and relive those good old times. While I am a student of the Civil War era and have investigated it extensively there is no way I want to go back. The same goes for this inspiration of going back to the 1960s and 1970s. I lived and played in those times and while I would like to have my youth back I would not want it back at the expense of modern technology. And I would not want to go back if it meant I had to give up all I have achieved up to this point in my life. I am a history professor and I study the past. One thing I teach is we must learn from the past but no where is it ever considered that we must savor the idea of bring back the ancient times.
Walk
Nov. 15, 2003
BatCop
3 posts
Wow, Walk! That was well spoken. I do have to agree with that message. I do not want to go back to wooden bets. I'm sure there is a place for them, it's just not in tourney ball.
Nov. 15, 2003
jimmieK
Men's 50
5 posts
Wood Bats ˆ Here‚s a novel Canadian idea for those of us trapped inside our Cabins this winter with nothing but those Canadian ash bats, maple syrup & Molsons:

Mix: 5 oz Molson
4 oz Maple syrup
Package last year‚s bottle of 26oz JW Whisky for later use

1/ Stir maple syrup into a glass with ice and the Molson beer. Give it a minute to settle and then down the hatch!

2/ you‚ll need a special place to consume what's left of that Canadian maple syrup, why not take your best gal or guy outside for a winter wonderland picnic?

Call your sled dogs away from tearing out the throats of the wood bat proponents -- No time for play during such serious business!

3/ Shake out your old ball bag in the snow and toss leftover tortiere to the huskies! Bundle up all your Canadian ash bats in a neat concentric circle, douse with the earlier saved JW Whiskey and set on fire. Don't forget extra beer and garlic sausage. Your hottie will love this attention to detail. The beauty of this wilderness picnic lies in the entertainment value and its responsible use of obsolete material.
Nov. 17, 2003
TerryDarc
22 posts
My apologies, K, if you took my attempt at humor as making fun of you. Sorry!
=Terry
March 3, 2005
biggeorge
Men's 60
25 posts
Yeah! I think you must be right about the good old days. Anyway, can anyone comment on the new basketball shoe? One manufacturer has a model that guarantees a 6' vertical but I hear thats not being permitted in several associations. Who cares. All the seniors will now be eligible for the NBA. Also there is a new headstock in production for croquet which will add almost 40' to penalty hits and lets not forget about the new shoulder mounted radar system that directs the ball into the pocket every time thus allowing the weakest of bowlers to roll a 300 virtually every time. I think the bat manufacturers will be best served producing reusable little composite fire hydrants to pass around to everyone with a hormone problem. How about if we just shorten the fences to 200' and put an end to the game once and for all. In the good old days to use a favorite saying of mine, Meade, Gatti, Huggins, et al, who I had the pleasure of playing against, could hit a rolled up sock out with a branch. Galloway, who I did not know was better than that it is said.
March 3, 2005
sjuhoops
123 posts
big george. you are right about jim galloway. i played with him with the old county sports team from long island. he was the best i had ever seen and he did it all with wooden bats.
hank
March 4, 2005
DoubleL10
Men's 65
833 posts
How are you, Hank, my man? I did not know you actually played with Jim Galloway (how old ARE you??) LOL! I saw Jim play back in the wood bat days, also; never had the opportunity to play against him. I still remember a quote he made at a tournament after he hit a long homer to right field. Someone asked him why he hit the ball to right and Jim simply said "That's where the pitch was". Classic and right on!

Best to you this year. Hope things are working out for the 60+ team.

Your friend, LL.
March 7, 2005
sjuhoops
123 posts
hello larry. just got back from a phoenix tourney with our 55(yes 55 team) . This is a very sore subject. Anyhow i was lucky enough to play with big jim for a few seasons and he was the best in my opinion at that time both offensively and defensively. he was also a true gentleman. i hear your team is outstanding. are you coming to vegas in the spring. hope all is well with the family and say hello lto pam and i hope to see you along the way.
take care
hank
March 7, 2005
Longballr9
Men's 40
48 posts
I appreciate reading the opinions listed here by men who have played this gam much longer than I. I've tryed to get Wooden Bat Tourneys going but not enough interest. I do think the new technology in equipment has both hurt and helped the game. I don't think there are any 100% correct answers here. I appreciate seeing a pitcher pick up a hot shot off of a hot bat just as much as I enjoy hitting a ball 400' when I do....and yes I still do once in a while. Fact is we all evolve in this sport and adjust to the changes. I prefer to remember why I play...to make friends and feel the youth in me which still exists.

Good Day to all.
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