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, Oct. 3, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Need two players ft meyers

The Chicago Gray Sox 70 AAA needs two players for the Ft. Meyers Winter Nationals in Ft. Meyers, Fl--November 3-4-5. Infielders or outfielders. Prefer you can run for yourself. You will need a valid 2016 SSUSA card and be from a state that touches Illinois.

If interested call ASAP as entry and rosters are due soon.

Gary Heifner 630-347-7475
, Sept. 23, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Bats
Discussion: The care of senior bats

Turbo

Interesting comments. I went down to Joliet Illinois to watch USSSA young guns play. They crush the ball. But, I watched some of the check in for the bats to be marked and placed in barrels for the umps to control. Guys were walking up with brand new bats in the wrapper and failing the test. Go figure. $300 down the drain.
, Sept. 22, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Bats
Discussion: The care of senior bats

I have absolutely no insight on this that is factual. However, if heat hurts them, why do guys put them in bat warmers on warm days?? I live in the north, I would like to think leaving them in a garage or trunk during winter months would lead to expansion and contracting of materials that would weaken the fiber etc.

I did happen to hear a guy in Dalton say his U2 was OK out of the wrapper, after break in swings was hot and now seems to be backing off.

Maybe bats wear out in time like something else ??? Oh, I remember, Senior Players.


, Sept. 14, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: DEFENSIVE STRATEGY FOR FIFTH INFIELDER

There are a LOT of great middle hitters out there. That 5th guy hanging around second really takes them out of their comfort zone. If you put him in the OF, your pitcher better be good on defense. He will get attacked repeatedly. So don't complain about the other team hitting middle. Since moving up to 70s, my team has turned a bunch of dlb plays with that guy turning the play and we have hit into many ourselves. Yes, teams will go right side more which really increases the importance of a 2nd baseman that is strong at fielding ground balls.
, Sept. 10, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Need to contact

Made contact thanks guys
, Sept. 10, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Need to contact

I need to contact Ray Poe of the Quad City Old Stars from the Quad Cities area of Illinois. Lost his phone number.

If someone knows it could you give him a call and ask him to call Gary Heifner at 630-347-7475
, Sept. 1, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Website comments
Discussion: rating

I can see why you might be moved up for a 2nd place at Vegas. However, I was told by a high source several years ago that SSUSA didn't care about what happens in SPA, so it should not have had anything to do with your SSUSA rating.
, July 16, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: ARC OF THE PITCHED BALL

I pitch between 1/3 and 1/2 of our games. I can tolerate an ump who can't tell what 6' or 12' is. As long as he is consistent, I can deal with it. Can't tell you how may times an ump has changed his arc calls late in a game. I know a TD has a lot to do at a big tournament. However, if he sees an ump letting 14' or 4' arcs go, he really should mention it between games. We have rules and like to play by the rules the SSUSA has approved. Takes me back to the world championships in Phoenix. The high arc was almost like unlimited in a game. Both teams were going nuts. The TD did ask the ump what he using to determine the high arc. He said he was using a ledge on the mountain behind the field. They brought out a ladder and a tape. The arc was 16'. They dropped down to 12', he got a new ledge, no more chaos. By the same token, all an ump has to do is walk up to the pitchers, determine their height, and the flat call should be a easy. Had an ump who was really weak on the 6' arc. I asked him how he determined the 6'. He said if it went below the brim of his hat, it was flat. The problem was, sometimes he was standing tall and sometimes bent over. Sometimes he had his chin up and sometimes he had his chin towards his chest. That can be an 10-12 inch difference. It is always an adventure.
, July 1, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Bats
Discussion: BAT REPAIR

not sure but a repaired bat might be considered altered. If an ump sees a crack or repair he will throw it out. Just put some gorilla glue in the crack and a couple of wraps of duct tape and use it for batting practice. That will help save excessive hits on your new one.
, June 29, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Remember When...........

When Bill Wertz was running the Chicago Black Hawks, he took them off free TV. He lost his fan base and attendance crashed. When his son took over, he got them back on free TV and the fan base is huge. It is hard to walk through a store, year round, and not see several Black Hawk hats or jerseys.

Senior softball was wise to reach down to younger guys and build a player base for the future. Don't know what it is like in the rest of the country, but all the suburban towns (I believe there are over a 1000) in the greater Chicago area have endless softball every night. I have heard many park districts have had to turn teams away. It is alive and well in all ages around here.

Back in the 60s and 70s I played 12" slow, 12" fast and 16" at the same time. It was not uncommon to have a 100 + people from the Park Forest community come out and watch the games. The crazy one was the 12" fast pitch. The league was down in Beecher Illinois. It was a small farm community with only several hundred people. We had well over 200/300 people come and watch the Tuesday night league. It was usually over 500 for the playoffs. Most were local farmers whose pick up trucks would fill the lot and park around the field. Sometimes, they would cheer a good play and boo a bad one. Was probably the most fun I have had in softball the 5 years I played there.

This is my 51st year and that was the way it was.





, June 27, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Bats
Discussion: Hitting from tee vs. hitting pitched ball

question: I have never hit of a tee. Bought one at a garage sale today for $2.

Do most of you place the height at the height you look for in a game and keep it there or

do you vary the height for practicing for various heights that might be a 3rd strike in a game if you don't swing at it.
, June 24, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: knee replacement

don't know the details but sport talk radio 670 in Chicago about a year ago was saying if you can stall about 2-3 years there is a replacement coming out that will be like the bionic man.
, June 23, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: courtesy runner

Although my team often has trouble hitting, running, catching and throwing, we are a major + team in one area. We have a handle on who is going to run for who before the game starts. We always get the courtesy runner out there quickly. Wish other teams would plan ahead especially when the game in on a time limit.
, June 22, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Pool games....???

The purpose of qualifiers is to get ready for the ring tournaments. We expect the "5" game guarantee so guys can try different things hitting-positions etc and build team depth. We really don't care if we win or lose. We just want to work on our skills and get better. Now, the Ring tournaments are a different story. We crank it way up. Several TDs have pulled some stupid bracketing in qualifiers so one or two teams go home at 4. Some TDs try and make a qualifier look like a big tournament. Just give us our 5 games even if we have to play a team twice.

When we go to the big ones like Vegas, I am in full support of the two qualifiers with a "5" game guarantee. Not only my team, but others were pretty worn down after playing 4 prelims in past years before the real tournament really started. SSUSA got this right.

As mentioned above, if senior ball ever went to 2 and done, senior ball would be history. My 70 team is mostly retired and have to be smart about where and when we travel and the total expenses. My team has played in senior ball since 2001. We would never go to a tournament with a 2 and done format.

I guess I should be honest here regarding $$$. We are fully sponsored by the "United States Social Security System".

, June 20, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: ARC OF THE PITCHED BALL

Nancy

I got that inside pitch hitting down to an art.

1. You step slightly in the bucket

2. You increase your bat head or swing speed significantly.

3. You power a perfect two hopper to the 3rd baseman who throws you out by 4-6 steps.

works every time!
, June 19, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: ARC OF THE PITCHED BALL

Being an outfielder/pitcher, I agree with lb 16. As soon as the other team starts bitching about a 6 to 7 foot arc strike, you can forget pitching that height the rest of the game. How hard is it for the ump to determine the height of the pitcher and go from there. I am 5' 10. Any pitch that clears my hat should be a legal strike. Yah-right.

There is no ump in the universe that knows what 12' is. I often get squeezed down to about 10-10 1/2. When I remind the ump I can stand on my own head and the arc will still have 4" left over, they usually just stare into space and try and figure out what I just said. As soon as the other team starts bitching about a real 12' strike call, it's back to 10'.

10 should be easier for umps to picture and is why I would like to see the arc changed to 6-10.


, June 17, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Major plus problem

We had a similar but different situation last year. We were the only 70 team signed up for the Northern Nationals. We had two choices. Get our money back or play 65 teams. With us being the only 70 team, our shot at getting a berth in the TOC was dead. We weren't going to the expense to go up there for a practice tournament.

I asked, but was denied, if we came, played all the games and took our pounding would we get the TOC berth. I think this is a situation that I feel a team should get a berth if they signed up in good faith. It would also give the TOC more teams
when I have seen guys complain about a lack of teams at the TOC>
, June 14, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Smoky Mtn.

Graphite

I feel your pain. We were in a qualifier a few years ago and had ASA umps. A call was made and I noted to the ump that it went against SSUSA rules. He said our rules were stupid and we would be playing his rules. I talked to the TD after the game about it, but nothing changed.

My team enjoys this too much to have umps that don't care. The TDs have to get a pair and instruct the umps they hire. I would rather have the teams self umpire than have some umps that could care less. It would seem to me that with all the senior ball being offered nation wide for both the tour and local park districts, there is a lot of money to be made umping and they would want to learn our rules.
, June 5, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Bat physics/dynamics question

Don't know if this fits here, however,

When I start thinking about driving with the lower body and using all my weight training muscles, I have ok tournaments.

When I only think about getting my hands moving quickly, I can feel my bat speed really pick up and I often have great hitting tournaments. I watch every hitting video I can find.
I think it can be like golf, you can over analyze and get all tied up. If I am in a slump, it is usually because I have a lazy bat and need to focus on getting the hands moving and bat speed up.

In our last tourney, I was getting hits but not crushing the ball. One of the guys said your bat speed really looks slow.

Forgot!
, June 5, 2015
garyheifner
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Old stories of bat doctoring

Nancy is right on. Guys would cut off the end cap, ram tennis balls or superballs in and have metal workers weld it back and finish it so you could not tell. Had guys back in my u-trip days who said they could have it done for me for $$$. I can honestly say, I never went there.

In a big Midwest u-trip tourney long ago, noticed the opponents had two bats in the rack about 2 inches longer. I protested before the game, bats ejected. I was informed I would get my ass kicked in the parking lot later. I was more than ready but when the others observed the size of the guys backing men up, they departed.

Guys would check in their bats in big u-trip events and the TD would spray paint the knob with a color to indicate bat approved. Players would then go out to their cars, open the trunk, pull out the loaded bats, match the color with one of the dozen or so cans of spray paint they carried around and return to play with the altered ones. I believe U-trip now keeps the bats at ck in and the ump brings them to the field.

You want to hear something really nuts. I went to watch a u-trip event last June. Watched the bat ck in for a while. 6 or 7 guys walked up, took the wrapper off brand new $300 bats and the bats failed the test. There were some pretty pissed of players.

What I could never understand is that most of the guys we knew were cheating were big time A-B players who could hit 350 plus easily with legal bats.

I am still for banning for life any senior player who is caught with an altered bat. We can use the greatest bats ever made. I can't figure out why guys have to cheat.


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