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Dec. 1, 2012

SSUSA RULES COMMITTEE 2012


The following link redirects to the Official Minutes of the 2012 SSUSA Rules Committee Sessions held in Mesquite, NV, on November 28-29, 2012. These were presented to the Executive Board and the membership in the Convention Closing Session on November, 30, 2012 by the Committee Chairman, Bill Ruth:

Official Minutes & Exhibit "A"

SYNOPSIS OF RATIONALE BEHIND SELECTED RULES COMMITTEE DECISIONS
Several here have asked that we communicate additional background information on decisions of the Rules Committee since the underlying reasoning may not always be readily apparent to all observers. The following information may be of assistance with respect certain of the decisions we made.

HOME RUN STAGING AT 1-3-6-9
Progressions between the divisions, ascending from AA through Major+, should not be so dramatic that moving teams upward in rating creates a rule-based deterrent to those teams being able to compete effectively at the next higher level. Additionally, narrowing the rules gaps, particularly HR's, between divisions is required in evaluating teams' performance for purposes of rating adjustments. The current changes address that issue.

AAA EXCESS HOME RUNS AS OUTS
A statistical review by staff of ALL game cards from the 2012 World Masters Championships revealed a significantly higher proportion of AAA teams hitting 'excess home runs' at a greater rate than in any other division. Double-digit HR totals for numerous AAA teams, especially in the 50+ and 55+ age groups, were very common. The Committee's view is that those teams will either self-request a rating increase to the Major division if they are dissatisfied with excess HR's as outs or, at least, be less resistant in the case of a 'performance based' increase in their rating by SSUSA. To a slightly lesser degree, the same statistical analysis results with respect to Major teams were observed.

MAJOR PLUS RUNS PER INNING (7)
Although a few Major+ affiliated Managers preferred the 9 runs per inning structure in their comments to the Committee, a significant majority believed that 9 was too much within the context of the number of innings played under that structure. The Committee also believed that 5 was too few per inning for Major+, thus the compromise at 7 runs per inning.

SEVENTY FOOT BASES
The statistical results of a survey prior to the Committee hearings revealed that 72% of the Men responding favored the 70' base distance, despite a majority of 75+ and 80+ respondents being opposed. In the Women's responses, the 40+ Masters Women were in favor of 70' bases by about the same percentages as the Men, but the Senior Women (50+ and more senior) were opposed to the change by over 90%. Accordingly, the limited exception was included to allow a T.D., in circumstances where facility considerations and the mix of ages playing at that site allow, 65' bases for only 75/80 Men and Senior Women may be possible, but is not mandated and any decision is at the sole discretion of the T.D.

THE "1-1" PITCH COUNT
This item has an annual Agenda presence, and 2012 was no different. In the past, support of the "1-1" count has been mixed, with slightly more opposed than supportive, and those perspectives were generally geographically biased. The matter was tabled, with SSUSA Staff being instructed to perform a short survey on the preference of the membership as a group to collect more recent data. Baed on the results of that survey, which is designed to be completed and tabulated byu year end, the Committee may, or may not, re-convene in telephone conference call mode to re-consider the issue.

We trust this additional information may be of assistance. Good luck in 2013!
Senior Softball-USA
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