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Discussion: Bases @ 70'

Posted Discussion
Sept. 14, 2012
ShaneV
Men's 55
381 posts
Bases @ 70'
Heard about this around the time the merger was announced. Nearly all venues in Las
Vegas are going to have 70' bases for World Masters coming up. Las Vegas is an NSA
town and mandate 70' and all the venues they "control".

We're playing "Road to Las Vegas" open event here in Lacey this weekend, so we're going
to do 70' bases to get used to it.

ShaneV
Sept. 14, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
just have to hit more bombs and walk 70 ft!
Sept. 14, 2012
ShaneV
Men's 55
381 posts
Just noticed that NY Motion is not on the
Las Vegas team list.

In fact none of the 55AAA teams (4) that
played in the Eastern are coming.

That is diaappointing...

ShaneV
Sept. 14, 2012
ShaneV
Men's 55
381 posts
Disappointing...
Sept. 14, 2012
Jawood
Men's 50
788 posts
70' bases makes the game MUCH better and safer! Should have this rule for all tournaments next year.
Sept. 14, 2012
Enviro-Vac
Men's 60
390 posts
70' pillows are great, it allows for some interesting tactics.

Good luck to all teams in Vegas!
Sept. 14, 2012
THECAT
59 posts
Lets lobby for Winter Worlds and TOC to change locations or at least change back and forth each year now that the Worlds are set in Vegas. Can't hurt either location in the long run. At least have SSUSA entertain it.
Sept. 15, 2012
taits
Men's 65
4305 posts
You'll likely find a 53 foot mound as well.
Neither of these are mentioned in the conference recommendations for rules.
Sept. 15, 2012
36
12 posts
The game of slow pitch softball continuesto change to accommodate the younger powergame. Most tournamentteams must supply their own balls. Fences in new complexes are going to 325', 70' bases, 53' pitching rubber. The only way this will be resolved is controlling the bat, naking it durable, and putting a warranty on it for safety. Example: End plugs come out on combats sorry Canadian company and won't take care of flaw in bat manufacturing. BUT the players who are MOST penalized are yhe older players who don't hit homeruns, have lost their spees, have lost their arm strength, play with 11 players and can now play in infinitive land for defense. Lots of double plays and harder to advance 2 Bases on a hit. The bats are making a different game. CONTROL the game as there is more enjoyment than watching home run derbies.
Sept. 15, 2012
Omar Khayyam
984 posts
taits, I hope you are incorrect. The SSUSA rule book is pretty precise in its dimensions for both base paths and for pitchers mound distances. Rule 2.4 on base paths: "set 65 feet apart for all age groups and divisions" and Rule 2.3.A on pitcher's plate distance: "50 feet from home plate."

One can argue about the advantages/disadvantages of 70 foot bases for senior softball, but the rules are clear that 65 is the SSUSA distance. Not too many arguments about 53 feet for pitching mound, since it is a rare occurrence, yet again the rules are adamant that it will be 50 feet.

I can't imagine that SSUSA would host its premier event with 450 teams attending, and every field would be in violation of its own rules!

My team during a season has occasionally encountered parks with 70 foot distances, but a reminder to the TD has resulted in distances being reset to the official distance (usually easily done with about 5 minutes work per field), and the TD has also informed the umpire to ignore the 52 or 53 foot distance on the very rare occasions with a longer distance on pitching. I even encountered an older field two years ago where the distance was mismarked at 47 feet and it had to be rechalked.
Sept. 15, 2012
taits
Men's 65
4305 posts
SSUSA does not control the parks. NSA does. If I remember correctly, this has happened before in Vegas as well. Also happened in St G also.
The book is what's been referred to as a 'guide'. Not set in stone as it were. Like the other events sanctioned by them that change length game times. Remember exceptions for certain things as well. It's called preferential treatment for some, imb.
Nothing like learning to work with other assns to get things doe for the players rather than self interest which this comes down to. City is the one who most lkely had ownership and should have a say but you never know these day. Even if NAS controls it what's so bad about having another set of plugs in the areas so dimensions could be changed.
Change to further base bath mat cause health issues. And it wouldn't be the 1st time for it either... Be ware if heart health risks running in the heat. It was not planned ahead of time and sprung on you. Not good.
Wish I was going. But, I enjoyed Reno at least.
Sept. 15, 2012
paul0784
Men's 60
122 posts
ShaneV so sorry NY Motion isn't going to Vegas. They were in last week but must have dropped out. The first time I saw the list they were on it. Really surprised they aren't going and more surprised none of the AAA teams are going either. So what does that mean for you guys, you automatically win the US Nationals right? Would have been more fun playing I know. Well, good luck there and hope you do well.
Sept. 16, 2012
SSUSA Staff
1124 posts
The base distances in Las Vegas will be at 70'. The City of Las Vegas, North Las Vegas and Clark County league play is governed by the NSA. They have a 70' base distance specification and those three municipal entities have declined to allow us to change them. They have also declined to defer League play in Clark County and North Las Vegas which occurs every night, except Saturday, during this tournament. The City of Las Vegas leagues are 'between season', allowing for uninhibited play at Doc Romeo and Lorenzi Parks.

Accordingly, they have demanded that the bases stay at 70' rather than having to be changed out every evening and morning. This has been a non-negotiable item with all of the governing bodies for at least the past seven or eight years. Those who have played in the Winter Worlds or at this year's Southwest Championships are familiar with the concept they have imposed.

As for the pitching distance and pitching rubbers, those are separate items. Although the rubbers will remain in the ground at 53', the pitcher's boxes will be chalked at 50' (3' in front of and 3' behind the front edge of the in-ground pitching rubbers). Our pitching distance will be consistent at the distance stated in the Rulebook.

Sept. 16, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2617 posts
Maybe next month the World Series will be played with 95' bases....:(

Super Bowl might get played on a CFL field.....:(

I hear the NBA Finals will use 11' baskets....:(
Sept. 16, 2012
Olden Slow
Men's 65
173 posts
I played in Vegas early this year...Yes, there is a little difference...But come on..quit whining about it..It's not going to change and it's the same for everybody...Just show up and play..
Sept. 16, 2012
garyheifner
349 posts
65'---70' no big deal. Maybe less 2B-3B hits. Doesn't matter if you play senior ball or ASA sock ball, a hard hit ball gets to you real quick. Once you have played a few games with 70' bases, you won't remember 65 footers.
Sept. 16, 2012
garyheifner
349 posts
P.S.

I would like to see our NFL guys on a CFL field with CFL rules, it is a far more exciting spectator game.

Maybe we should go to 11' or 12' foot baskets considering point guards these days can dunk with little or no effort.

Sept. 16, 2012
17Black
Men's 50
217 posts
I'm from Ohio, played in Vegas when Winter Worlds were there 2 of the past 3 years, and had no idea the bases were 70'???

It certainly was not noticable, at least playing in 50's???
Sept. 16, 2012
Omar Khayyam
984 posts
Good news about the pitching distance staying the same. Hard to believe that a tournament that is bringing 450 teams to Vegas gets static about moving the bases. I can understand not wanting to interrupt evening league schedules since Vegas has to live with a year of whining from inconvenienced year-round players (or why not just build the bye into the league schedule?). But moving the bases is such a simple thing.

Most tournaments have plenty of guys showing up 60 to 90 minutes before the first game, especially if warm up hitting is allowed. And of course, both teams are present at the conclusion of the day's tournaments sessions. Every team has many players who have experience relocating and expertly setting a base at a different location, particularly with existing permanent holes. Should be no problem to ask team managers to assist in this job and all a couple of assistant TDs have to do is quickly measure each distance on each field and both tournament and evening league are set to go.
Sept. 16, 2012
ShaneV
Men's 55
381 posts
This is not a criticism, just a somewhat
biased observation. The key terms in the
official explanation that jump out at me:

City of
governed
declined
declined
demanded
non-negotiable
governing

Like I said, I'm biased...

Concessions are being made and nothing
(merger) is completely bad or completely
good...

ShaneV
Sept. 16, 2012
ShaneV
Men's 55
381 posts
And by the way, our Road to Las Vegas event
this weekend went really well. Almost no
comments on the 70' basepaths. If you
really think about it you will notice the
difference. At full speed, maybe one extra
stride or a bit more. I've noticed with the 65' bases I usually "stutter step" at the
bag to avoid the long, slow, last stride.
Didn't seem to be necessary with the 70'
base path. Could just be my imagination. I
was a bit distracted all weekend.

Not sure the impact on infielders except a
bit more time to make plays. The 5' is 7.7%
added to 65', but since you reach top speed
way before, maybe it adds 5% to your time to reach the bag. That's not much.

ShaneV
Sept. 17, 2012
GSWP001
Men's 60
73 posts
I played in the road to vegas at the RAC this weekend also. Never even noticed the difference in running. Did notice a few more outs at second base and a couple more DB's. Otherwise all seemed ok.
Sept. 23, 2012
Doorman
35 posts
We played in LV earlier this year with the 70' bases. It changes the game more than you think. Here is what I think happens.

- Less doubles
- Less runners going 1st to 3rd
- More force outs at 2B
- More double plays
- Lower scoring games.

I dont have stats to prove my point, but I would be curious to statistically see the differences between games with 65' bases vs games with 70' bases.

For teams that run well it is a big disadvantage. It changes the game into more of a a station to station contest. Teams with good base runners are definitely slowed.

The longer bases definitely favor teams that hit more home runs and run poorly. The teams that rely on speed in order to compete against the teams that hit more home runs are at a disadvantage.

Teams with average running speed and dont hit a lot of home runs are hurt the most. The extra 5' probably costs them 2-5 outs per game and 2-5 runs per game. Doubles are turned into singles, beating the double play by a step turns into a double play, safe at home by a step turns into out by a step, etc.

I think it is stupid to play with 65' bases all year, then for the biggest tournament of the year we are forced to play 70' bases. I dont think it would be asking too much to move the bases moved in 5' for this big of a tournament.

This is just my opinion and I could be wrong.
Sept. 23, 2012
Jawood
Men's 50
788 posts
Doorman, You are right that it is silly to play all year long at 65', then go to 70' for the Nationals, it does change the game ... like adding 10 yards to the field for the Super Bowl.

However, the positives outweigh the negatives IMO, and I hope they will make this rule perminent next year.
Sept. 23, 2012
Doorman
35 posts
I dont see how they would make this permanent because most fields are not set up for 70' bases. Good luck with that.

70' would be ok...if they would allow us to lead off with the pitch. But then this would be the only tourney with this type of rules.
Sept. 23, 2012
Enviro-Vac
Men's 60
390 posts
70' ...all good
Sept. 24, 2012
birdie
Men's 60
676 posts
Never played softball in Vegas and was wondering about the 70ft base. Are the infields deep enough so that you do not have to play on the outfield grass unless you wanted to. I have played on fields where the infields were to small and you had to play 3-4 feet on the outfield grass just to be in the right spot. Our team is looking forward to this event 19 teams in the 60 major Friday cannot get here fast enough. See you on the field. Thanks Harry #20 NV FORCE
Sept. 24, 2012
softball4b
Men's 60
722 posts
They are deep enough, sometimes the SS is playing too deep to make the throw to first, not with me running, but I have seen it.
Oct. 1, 2012
Webbie25
Men's 60
1953 posts
I absolutely love the 70 foot bases-it is a huge boon to the defenses by bringing outfield arms more into play, helping outfielders (that get to a ball quickly) to hold runners and taking away that extra base. Infielders have that split second more to throw the runner out at first. I really think SSUSA should consider that for all divisions under 65 years old, at least.
Oct. 2, 2012
sliplayer
Men's 60
70 posts
I endorse the 70' bases for safety and as a equalizer. It protects the infielders and gives the outfielders a better chance to throw people out on the bases. I know it would be tough for some fields to go to expand but I really believe it would be good for the Senior game.
SLi
Oct. 2, 2012
Olden Slow
Men's 65
173 posts
I agree. 70' bases made all the games I played much more interesting.. I still run well and although I did get thrown out on a play that I would have been safe at 65'. I still had my share of extra base hits..Just my .02
Oct. 2, 2012
Jawood
Men's 50
788 posts
Couldn't agree more, Webbie & sliplayer. Just because the bases are at 70', there is no rule that states you HAVE to move back on the grass! Ideally, you would want to move back, but if you don't have the arm, don't. We can adjust to 70' bases easily, just like we did with 65' bases a couple of decades ago.
Oct. 3, 2012
boston
297 posts
My concern in this discussion is the lack of concessions that were made by the various city entities in bringing millions of dollars to their community. The way I see it is we don't need Las Vegas they need us. Worlds was fine in Phoenix and if certain communities want to play hardball and not work with any variations in their scheduling screw them. Maybe, my approach isn't practical too many but after reading this post about the unwillingness of Clark County and N Las Vegas to accommodate SSUSA screw them. Just my 2 cents.
Oct. 3, 2012
SSUSA Staff
1124 posts
The 70' base "issue" has been non-negotiable for at least six years in Las Vegas and Clark County. That is likely to be the case until NSA loses control of league play in those municipal areas and/or the NSA changes their rules, neither of which we can control or influence.

There are very few communities that meet the fields inventory requirement (35 diamonds in 10 sports complexes this year) to host this type of event. The simple reality is that this is an issue of limited importance in the global context of hosting almost 450 teams playing over 1,500 games in 10 days, and one that seems to have supporters on both sides of the 65' vs. 70' debate.

Oct. 4, 2012
Webbie25
Men's 60
1953 posts
Jawood-you have the other point I meant to make-too many guys feel that the 70' bases give them time to move back a couple more steps, and they lose the advantage of it. That two or three steps back may get you to 1 or 2 balls in a tournament that you are able to get an out on, but cost you 3 or 4 outs that you don't make the throw in time.
Oct. 4, 2012
Webbie25
Men's 60
1953 posts
Dave-maybe going to a third week-(please don't look at me like that!) would lessen the number of fields required.
Oct. 4, 2012
OCM27
Men's 60
2 posts
Pitcher's box was not moved for 60 Majors as indicated in ssusa staff memo of 09/16.
Oct. 5, 2012
Omar Khayyam
984 posts
Pitchers box was mismarked at every venue we played at, but umpires (about 8 different ones) all knew the rule and allowed a pitcher to start 3 feet in front of the permanent 53 foot rubber.

The mismarking came from drawing the pitchers box 6 feet behind the 3 foot rubber. For pitchers who didn't catch on, they were flinging from 59 feet (and a couple really struggled with accuracy and pitching short). But the umps were clear: you can pitch from 3 feet in front of the rubber to 3 feet behind it. But of course, with mismarked boxes, many guys were far deeper than the SSUSA standard of 56 feet.

Thanks SSUSA for clarifying this ruling with the umpires. For precision pitchers like me and a few others, being able to pitch from the standard 50 feet made a difference. There were all kinds of claims that the pitching rubber was 50 feet for the tournament; that it was 50 feet at "this field"; that it looked like 50 feet to the manager; that it had been officially measured at 50 feet; etc. I even had to challenge one manager and offer to bet $100 that the rubber was at 53. He didn't accept.

One local official said that the pitching rubber was now standard at 53 feet in the whole state of Nevada, including Mesquite.
Oct. 5, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2617 posts
Omar, if those guys were struggling from 59', why didn't they just move up? That had to have been the back of the box, with plenty of box in front of them. Doesn't seem too difficult to figure out.
Oct. 5, 2012
Omar Khayyam
984 posts
Gary19, I didn't think so, either, but after benefiting from a few walks, I did ask them (after the game) if they had ever pitched from 59' before. Nope. And they certainly saw me pitching from 50 feet. Must have been the Nevada sun (in the high 90s all week).
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