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, Jan. 16, 2009
Downs
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Fran Dowell Named One of Top Sports Planners in America

Fran, from the entire senior softball community up here in the great N/W, our sincerest "congratulations" on your recent selection by the Sports Events Magazine as one of the nation's top Sports Events Planners of 2009.  It is a well deserved selection and speaks very highlly of you and your respective SSUSA Staff.  It is obvious you "Lead BY Example" and surround yourself with people you respect and trust and that's why SSUSA works so well.  Also, we the benefactors of all SSUSA's  time and efforts, appreciate your responsiveness to our complaints, needs, and suggestions.  There is little doubt, as I know you personally, that you share this national honor with your entire Staff, and rightly so.  You and Terry have a justifyable reason to be proud of your many personal accomplishments as well as the SSUSA's Organizational accomplishments.  We all salute you and totally agree with this national award.  Walk proud, you earned it, you deserve it, we support it.  Jim
, Nov. 24, 2008
Downs
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Why have 11 on defense for 70+ teams?

Mike, as you have never played in the 70 division how do you know what the majority of 70 teams and players really want. I think you'll find the majority "PREFER" the 11 defensive player option. Also, there is no setfast rule. If ,now that you are intending to move up to the 70's in 2009, you feel that this is not a good option, you can certainly play with only 10 defensive players if you wish. The option affords the team a chance to get more players into the game and it also speeds the game up. It was not ever intended to prevent hitting up the middle or protecting the pticher. It was instituted as we 70's are too slow to cover second like the younger teams. We have been using it for years and never have heard any complaints, except for a new team that suddenly finds they are going to be faced with a defensive player up the middle. You will soon learn to appreciate this additional player position, once you learn not to hit up the middle. Jim
, Nov. 6, 2008
Downs
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: GRANDMA FRAN

Fran & Dave. Congratulatlions on your very first grandchild. It is a gift from God and one you'll both cherish for a lifetime. (Hope Dave is doing OK as I heard he was responsible for this and took credit for doing all the work). Seriously, you two have been like family to all of the teams and players up here in the great N/W. May we share with you in this joyous event and once again share with you and the entire SSUSA Staff on just how much we respect and appreciate all you do for us on a continuous basis. Mallory Erin will soon learn to appreciate you as much as we all do. Oh yea, go ahead and spoil her as that's what Grandmothers are entitled to do. GRANNY & PAW-PAW. Has a beautiful ring to it. Congratulaltions. Joeseppi's 70's & 75's, Jim D.
, May 5, 2008
Downs
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: HEADFIRST SLIDING

Bones: it is each player's personal decision as to how hard he wants to play the game. I started playilng fastpitch in an organized youth travel league when I was 8 years old and now play senior slowpitch @ 71. As an Officer with ASA I unsuccessfully legislated to get the headfirst slide prohibited for the following reasons. 1. We played in a benefit fastpitch tournament with the proceeds going to a 22 year old father of two that slid head first into second base and while sliding the second baseman stepped between his outstretched arms to complete a double play and the slider's head struck the second baseman's ankle. He broke his neck was was totally paralyzed from the neck down. 2. While serving as the UIC for the NCAA Div. 1 woman's fastpitch, a young FSU lady player slid headfirst into home plate and her head rammed into the catcher's shinguards. I was an Asst Fire Chief and fortunately, one of my paramedics was in the stands and rendered first aid until the ambulance arrived. She was out for the year but did come back to play the following year.
Therefore, my question is just how hard you want to play and personally, I'm all for sliding, but prefer to see players slide feet first as it's just a game and not worth a serious injury. Professionals, well that's different. Baseball and football require full out ability or they lose their job. Further, us old guys don't bend according to my orthopedic doctor, we break. Lots of luck, however you elect to slide. Jim
, July 12, 2007
Downs
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: WESTERN NATIONALS (DRAFT) GAME SCHEDULES

WHAT A JOB? Our 70's Joeseppi's team from Tacoma, WA just finished up in the NW Championships in Portland, OR. During the tournament we all had the opportunity of observing Dave Dowell working on the Reno Western National brackets and schedules most of Tuesday between administering the tournament and handling questionable issues, and we learned he was up doing the final printings until after 2:30 am. Once he thought he was finished and ready to publish his work on the web, he found six teams had been forwarded to him with wrong team classifications. Said he was forced to start all over again. (Sure sounds like fun, huh?)
Needless to say, all day Wednesday Dave was back to "RE-DOING" the entire thing due to adding and deleting teams from specific divisions and therefore increasing the total number of games and forcing more games in order to get to the finals and championship games. Dave worked on that the enire night (Wed) and did not make it to bed prior to arriving at the fields for the championship games for the 65's & 70's this morning, Thursday.
Not only does Dave do an exceptional job of coordinating all the games and fields, he takes control of the tournament as the SSUSA Rep and continuously retains the respect of all. From all of us, sorry to hear about the confusion and extra work we create in our old age, and appreciate your time, efforts, and understanding. (Keep in there, we will improve with age, (Sure we will!) Jim D.
, May 21, 2007
Downs
Topic: Bats
Discussion: Utra II Advanced or Combat

Lefty-8: in answer to your question, I am aware of only one Senior Combat that broke. However, it was broken by BASHBRO-1, and I know that until he found the Combat he ordered his U-II's at 6 to 12 at a time. He is one of those unique senior power hitters that can really "crush" a ball. I was told he averages 1-HR per less than 7 AB's. I hit with him and his brother Tad quite a bit. The last 5 or 6 times I've seen him hit, it was a Senior Combat. He certainly can qualify for the 400 or 450 club.
I watch other hitters and it amazes me how many seniors use the U-II-A and place both hands above the silver knob. Problem: you have taken away considerable bat length which seriously reduces the leverage you normally generate with swinging a 34 inch bat. Guess Miken didn't think that was important, but it sure is to me. Lefty, hope this helps AND personally I'm hoping Miken returns to their old U-II as it was the best bat, at one time. No longer. Jim
, May 21, 2007
Downs
Topic: Bats
Discussion: Utra II Advanced or Combat

Hey Lefty, I think we had this same discussion in Feb. However, I am 70, 6' 2" and 165, and just broke my fourth U-II this year and broke seven last year. It may be just my personal opinion, but I think when Miken ships out a U-II-A, they should stamp "fragile" "glass" on the package. Also, the Advanced knob kills my palm and yes, I do use an overlap grip with no part of my right hand on the bat. Oh yea, I can occasionally clear the 300 fence. However, I am now a converted Combat hitter, 30 oz. end loaded and unless Miken reverts back to the 2000-2004 U-II model, I have purchased my LAST Miken. I may still use my 585 Maniac but do not like my NRG 600. The MUIIA does not have anywhere the durability and not quite the distance when compared to the Combat. Ananconda's 1.20 bpf Combat is by far the leader today for senior's with some power. Try it, you'll like it.
, Feb. 24, 2007
Downs
Topic: Bats
Discussion: Tried my ultra 2 advance out.

Lefty & Monte: up here in the Seattle area we have been using the U-II-A for BP. It has pop out of the wrapper and we are about 50-50 on the knob design. It seems to work best for those using the overlap grip. Also, has shortened the bat in leverage as the maximum length of any bat is 34 inches, measured end to end. This new knob design requires too much of the total length of the 34 inches to permit a leverage equal to the standard type of bat knob. This reduction of leverage length when added to recent lack of durability probably will result in a serious reduction of marketability for Miken. In fact, for those of us that have been breaking so darn many ( I broke 7 U-II's last season and one already this season) we think Miken should change the name from Ultra II-A (advanced) to Ultra II-D (for disposable). Can't afford to keep replacing the U-II's. So, I too have picked up two Combat Da Bomb Originals. So far, so good.
, Nov. 14, 2006
Downs
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: injections for O/A knees

Chopper: of course, each of us is different. One of the most critical issues relating to knees is personal weight. For each one pound we carry, our knees are subjected to an additional 5-pound impact. Now with that said, I too have had two meniscus orthoscopic surgeries on my left knee. I was diagnosed as bone-on-bone on the inside of the left knee. I am 69 years of age and have played softball since age 8. I play year-round and in 3 or 4 leagues. I have been playing in Major Plus, but in Championship play also played in 50's, 55's, & 60's. I not only ran for myself, but for the 50's & 55's as a courtesy runner just about every inning. Twice I have gone through the 5-shot Hyalgan series, 18-months apart. Again, it may not be for everyone, but it made a major difference to me personally. Since the series, I play with no pain and no swelling.
The key, Chopper, is only a Doctor can tell you whether or not Hyalgan will benefit you. I know of a large number of fellow players that have gone through the 3-shot Synvisc series and indicated there was no improvement. Finally, you can go to the following website www.HYALGAN.com for further information. Mine was covered by Medicare, but I doubt you are that old, yet? It is expensive, but certainly easier than surgery and if it don't work, what have you really lost besides a few dollars and a little time. Also, I went to practice within a half hour of each injection.
Wish you luck and hope it helps. It sure can't hurt. If I can be of any further assistance, email me or call Fran to get my personal phone number. Jim
, Dec. 25, 2005
Downs
Topic: Website comments
Discussion: Thanks Adm. & Staff of SS-USA

From the 1.5 million men & women Senior Softball Players over the age of 50 across the U.S., we wish the Administration & Staff of SS-USA a 'Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year". Although it is the players that gain all the benefits of your time and effort, oftentimes we forget that it because of you that we can all enjoy this great game of softball. At our age, we seem to forget that probably less than 1% of the nation's seniors can meet the rigors required to play competitve softball. Yes, we get the physical activity, the competition, and the friendships while SS-USA does all the work.
Now that we are ready to begin a brand new year of competition, let's make sure the SS-USA is well aware of just how much their expenditures of time and effort means to all of us, the registered senior players. "Happy 2006" and thank you to each individual comprising the Adm & Staff of SS-USA.
, Sept. 13, 2005
Downs
Topic: Teams looking for players
Discussion: 65+ Player Needed for St George

Mike: sorry to hear that the Emerald City Masters - 65's are continuing to struggle to field a team. Please let Jim Turner know if your team elects to not attend as we'd love to have you and Jack Loy join us. However, for your information if you have not yet checked, go to the homepage of seniorsoftball.com and then click on Ratings under Tournaments. On the right side of the page click Huntsmans and their respective homepage will surface. The last item on the page is Team Finder. Click on Team Finder and you will locate a list of 26 players looking for a team to join @ Huntsman. Good luck and again, let us know if ECM-65's decides to not show. (Note: 65's are Oct 3 thru 7). Jim D.
, Sept. 8, 2005
Downs
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: correct call ASA rules

Downs-Seattle: BillyMac & Killabrew, I know of no umpire's tests that are on any of the websites. However, the thing that has always amazed me is that the coaches and managers DO NOT attend the annual ASA Umpires Rules Clinics (not umpires schools) that are made available to anyone that pays the entry fee. (Very cheap) They go over all rules, starting at an entry level and any changes or new rules too. They teach rule interpretations and proper applications. It is the coaches and managers that are responsible for making sure the umpire is correct or for challenging him/her. It is obvious that the umpires are not always right. Also, it is honestly rather difficult to read a rule book as the items are categorized under a single heading and you lose track of that as you scroll down looking for your issue of concern. However, I always taught my new umpires to at least read the back of the ASA rule book, under th section titled "Points of Emphasis". This section breaks down the proper application of the major rules such as your "Time Call" which also applies for missed first base and missed home plate. The umpire is to "hesitate" then call safe. That play is over and only when the defense makes the required appeal by tagging the runner or tagging the base does the umpire change his call to OUT! It also addresses the NO FORCE on a flyball issue. Good reading as you are going to learn a lot of things you thought you knew to be right before, that really isn't so. Jim
, Sept. 5, 2005
Downs
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: correct call ASA rules

Downs-Seattle: sorry, last sentence was supposed to read "tag:, not "rag". See what happens when you get old. You have senior moments.
, Sept. 5, 2005
Downs
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: correct call ASA rules

Downs-Seattle: the majority of you have the call correct. As having served 10 years as the UIC in the Women's College World Series, it is a common question which often results in a wrong call by the umpires. Yes, it is referred to as a "Time Call" and is actually an appeal play. As the rule states you cannot have a force out on a caught fly ball, it depends on whether the run scores before the tag of the runner or the base prior to his/her return to the base left at the time the ball was hit. If the tag was made as stated, after the runner crossed the plate, then the run DOES count. The miss interpretation or application of the rule can be protested, however, the judgement of the umpire cannot be protested. Therefore it is important for the caoch to determine if the umpire is miss applying the rule or saying the rag was made before the runner crossed the plate.
, July 29, 2005
Downs
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Congrats SS-USA on Western Nationals

MK, Mad Dog, Gary: sorry for the delay but had to fly down to OR. for a funeral. My wife's uncle. Now, MK, if you have the 2005-06 SS-USA Rule Book, there is now a section on Snowbird residency. My book was left with the team when I left for OR. and I won't get it back for a week or two, so at this immediate time I cannot quote the exact section, but I did read it last week when I received this years rulebook.
My concern, with the Snowbird issue is similiar to the adjoining state rule. Here in WA we only border OR. and ID. However, someone said some states are able to draw from up to 9 bordering states. Again, CA. and FL. stand alone. Anyone from anywhere can claim Snowbird status. It is not worth the expense to investigate or challenge. So, if a bordering states rule and a snowbird rule are both applicable, why have any residency rules? I personally believe the powers-to-be should either eliminate all residency requirements, or mandate that any team with one or more out-of-state players must play Major Plus. No exceptions. Honestly, the majority of team rosters are extremely flexible on a continuous basis and there is not much that can be done. (Mad Dog, thanks for the good old fashion butt kicking in the West Nat. Good games and good job) Jim
, July 27, 2005
Downs
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Congrats SS-USA on Western Nationals

Mike39: quite some time ago I personally gave up on being concerned about the Snowbird issue. It has proven to be a way of life up here in the N/W. There are a large number of players that invoke the Snowbird rule and play in championship play with teams from two states. We see it in many of the teams that exist up here. Play for a team most of the year and play qualifiers and some world or national tournaments with a local team and then go play in some other softball org. championships with an AZ. or CA. team. Honestly, the majority just say to xxxx with it because they are our friends and we just live with it. The powers to be are well aware of what is going on. See ya!!!!
, July 26, 2005
Downs
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Congrats SS-USA on Western Nationals

To MK39. Mike, I was not a party to any of the actual complaints or inquiries. What I heard was from the players or managers that played approximately when we did. I played in the 55's and then in the 65's. I did not hear any major complaints and it is my opinion that the issues were addressed in a logical and professional manner as none of the issues, that I am aware of, resulted in any further controversy. Play continued and at least everyone SEEMED satisfied.
The issues I heard were, Snowbird concerns whether they were committed to only one state or playing multiple states. One concern was how a team could qualify if they had not won a tournament to gain a spot in the West. Nationals. It was later learned by the Manager that to qualify a team had to play in at least one qualifier, not win one. Qestioning frozen rosters.
Teams supposedly picking up players at the tournament and adding them to a roster, from a younger age division and higher classification. And whether or not players were required to sign in prior to playing in the tournament. Finally, like I stated, I was not a party to ANY of these discussions, however, the SS-USA staff seemed to address all issues and satisfy those concerned. (Yes, Mike. I really enjoyed our conversations last year at the ASA. We won the 65 Major Plus while you young ones were winning the 50's. Just this week received the awards from ASA for winning their 2004 Nationals) I think I'll stick to playing SSWC and skip ASA . ASA won't even give out their phone number or email address. Jim
, July 26, 2005
Downs
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Congrats SS-USA on Western Nationals

To the SS-USA staff, field directors, and umpires, congratulations on one of the best tournaments ever. It rained hard Thursday night and the fields were in primo condition on Friday afternoon. Used a revised, 5-inning 1 & 1 schedule and it worked great. Kept on schedule and no complaints heard. There were lots of potential problems regarding eligibility and the staff handled them all with professionalism and extremely good judgement. They listened and was fair in all their applications according to the team managers that were involved. (No, we did not win either the 55's or 65's) but we had good competition and lots of ball. Again, congratulations to all the winners and to the SS-USA and their respective staff. Thanks! Jim
, March 29, 2005
Downs
Topic: Associations
Discussion: WHAT R U TRYING to do LVSSA?

Stoneman, I too had been adamantly opposed to such a strike mat until we played the last 5 years or so in Canada where this extened plate was used. It really works great, and NO, I am not a pitcher. We are a Major Plus team and it actually improved the game. It is better than the 3 ball 2 strike form or using the umpire's discretion regarding the ball passing through some imaginary strike zone. Canada's games generally last 7 innings and we see no increase in strike-outs. It reduces the number of walks and did not increase strike-outs because the batter can step in or out as the pitch reaches it's apex. I just wish we could adopt it uniformly. Of course, no one likes change, but it really is not a major issue during the game.
, Oct. 7, 2004
Downs
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Help, please

Ozone, I would suggest you contact Frank or Patty Daniels. Each year they conduct a SS-USA National Qualifier and they serve as the Hawaii reps. Phone: (808) 668-9865. Downs, Seattle.
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