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Details for stever


Real name:
Steve Ravenkamp

Location:
Globe, AZ

Division:
Men's 65

Messages posted by stever »Message board home   »Start a new discussion

, Feb. 12, 2011
stever
Topic: Teams looking for players
Discussion: 60's forming new team in OKC area

Elmer, what level will you be playing? How much travel (# of tournaments) are you planning on?
, May 2, 2010
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Regarding "To Screen or not to Screen"

There is already a solution to the safety situation. "Armor up". Catchers have been doing it for years in fastpitch and baseball and it works. I caught fastpitch when younger and took many shots off the mask, chest protector and shin guards. Still hurts, but does little damage. Pitchers already have that option but most refuse to use it. The arguement that it will take away from their mobility is a load of crap. Ask a catcher. In fact, they might just become better fielders once they get used to it because it will take away some of the fear factor. And the balls aren't going back up the middle any faster than a baseball pitcher can deliver a pitch. So armor up...it won't change the rules or the way the game is played, but will create the safety.
, April 30, 2010
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: To screen or not to screen...

Two points:
1. In order to be fair, it would seem to me that pitchers should not be allowed to field anything up the middle if a screen is used. Otherwise, the better ones will move to one side, the shortstop and secondbaseman will move to the holes, and it will be extemely hard to hit a ground ball through the infield. How many pitchers would agree to that?
2. SSUSA already did a survey last year on this issue and the majority wanted the rules the way they are (good bats and balls, no screen, no PPR). Many of the most vocal on this site are most vocal about claiming the associations don't listen to the players; yet, when the majority of the players don't agree with their views they can't let it go. While it is a true trajedy when a death or serious injury occurs there will never be a way to mandate 100% safety. I have seen a player die on the field after running the bases; but we don't suggest alterations in the rules to stop running. We all accept some risk when we get up in the morning. The only way to mandate 100% safety in this issue is to play the game on a computer (then we would probably risk carpal tunnel ;).) And no, I'm not a pitcher but I am a corner infielder.
, March 17, 2010
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: friday play

Its a matter of logistics more than anything. Assuming you have a four-field complex, the first games are at 8AM and the last ones start at 5PM (since we don't want to play at night), you can get in 28 games a day. If you have 4 divisions (50, 55, 60, 65) and each division has five teams in it, and you play two seeding games and a double elimination bracket, you will need to play roughly 72 games. That means it takes at least 3 days to play the tournament. Logic says that you play the 50 & 55's on the weekends, which takes up 36 of the available 56 game times. Also, most people want to get out of there as early as possible on Sunday and no one wants to play at night. Unfortunately, that means the older brackets (60, 65) get pushed earlier into the week. It's strictly a matter of percentages...there are fewer players in the 50/55 that are retired than in the 60/65. All this doesn't even take into account the younger (40) or older (70) brackets, weather and unforeseen problems. Unless you can have 50/55 one weekend and 60/65 another weekend there is little room to maneuver, and that creates a totally different set of logistical problems. So give the TD's a break. I'm sure they'd rather spend 3 days in a motel running a tournament than 5 days.
, Feb. 26, 2010
stever
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: major/aaa

It's obvious this coach has no idea how SPA (or SSUSA for that matter) ratings are done. All teams start the season with the same rating as they finished. As long as he has at least 6 players from last years roster he is going to have a hard time getting re-rated. If he has less than 6 players from last years roster he is essentially a new team. All new teams start the SPA season rated AAA. Everyone gets lumped together in pool play and plays AAA rules. They are then broken out into brackets for the round robin based on how they played in pool play. In May, SPA makes their first rating change of the year based upon how teams have played to date. You can then appeal your rating, provided you have played in three qualifiers. There are specific things required to request re-rating and compiling that data is strictly up to the team requesting such a re-rating. Final ratings are in early July. With regard to the 55 team, changing age levels does not automatically change your rating. The advice he has given his players sounds like whining. He should at least call SPA and have them explain why they are rated as they are if he has less than 6 roster players from last year. Believe me, his advice is childish and will NOT hold SPA hostage. By the way, there has been no summit for ratings for the past couple of years. Each of the two organizations does their own ratings and there are some differences. Of course (theoretically) this means you could have different rosters for each of the organizations. Both organizations look at the individual players on your roster as well as your record when rating. If you have at least 6 players that have been playing on a Major roster, you will be Major.
, Feb. 19, 2010
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: How would YOU rate teams

SSUSA Staff: You probably need to save these two explanations because I know from 13 years of playing senior softball that this will come up again and again. This is the best explanation I have ever seen, though. I also know, having had many, many converstations with staff members regarding teams and players that the staff tries to do the best possible job in keeping the competition fair. In every case where I have been called (or have called) I came away feeling that the staff had bent over backwards to be fair. As you admitted, you aren't perfect, but I will take issue with anyone who says you don't try.
, Feb. 19, 2010
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: TOC 50AAA

I think what you saw is the rule rather than the exception. Sure, I suppose once in a while a team that doesn't belong there may slip in somehow. But I also believe the staff does there very best to keep that from happening. Nothing is perfect, however. I have also found that most of the biggest complainers either don't understand the rating system, are not going to be happy unless they have a decided advantage, or both.
, Feb. 19, 2010
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: My take on the short note on page 7, bottom right hand side of page.

You've got to be kidding! This is nothing more than legaleze that allows the paper to carry advertising without having to endorse or substantiate any of the claims made. It also allows the paper to carry opposing views without supporting any of them. To me, this is free speech. If we weren't such a litigous society it probably wouldn't be needed.
, Feb. 17, 2010
stever
Topic: Tournaments
Discussion: Teams Being Bumped Up

Bob50...Unfortunately, there are a lot of players who don't care about the best competition, they only want to win a ring. I really get tired of the teams that win 80% of the time in their brackets and then whine when they get bumped up. There are a lot of considerations in deciding where to rate a team and winning one tournament, unless it is a major tournament, will not cause you to be bumped up. Now, if you play in three qualifiers and win all three, or if you totally blow out the competition, you probably are in the wrong classification and should be bumped up in mid-season. Considering all the variables the officials who decide the ratings have to look at I think they do a pretty good job...not perfect, but probably as good as can be done. I know from last years SSUSA, ISA and SPA Nationals I couldn't complain about teams in our bracket being mis-rated. The best teams on those particular weekends won, as they should have, but there were many others that could have won had a couple of breaks gone the other way. (No, we didn't win any of the three tournaments). And I didn't feel any of the teams in the bracket were mis-rated.
, Feb. 15, 2010
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Hybrid Turf Fields

It has been my understanding that all the BLD fields forbid the use of the senior bats. Therefore, I would think it highly unlikely a senior tournament to be held at one of them. Could be wrong, though.
As to the hybrid fields, I find it a bit amusing the posters advocating against the senior bats because the balls come at the pitcher and infielders too fast would like the aritificial infields. True, you get truer bounces (although the ball stays down), but it sure goes through faster than on dirt. Plus, rug burns are a bitch and the seams can cause major problems. I liked them as a middle infielder, I'm not so approving as a corner infielder.
, Jan. 31, 2010
stever
Topic: Bats
Discussion: SPA survey

mad dog - how do you come up with that idea?! Remember, only about 10-15% of all players are pitchers. From the comments section I thought they were well represented.
, Jan. 30, 2010
stever
Topic: Bats
Discussion: SPA survey

Bruce, not only that, but 17 of the comments about the PPR said that they wanted SPA to get rid of it. Since SPA didn't have one, wonder what they were thinking? Also, 136 of the 685 comments said they thought the rules were just fine as they are.
, Jan. 12, 2010
stever
Topic: Teams looking for players
Discussion: Team Looking For TOC Players

To finish off the above discussion, Timberworks Const (55+ AAA) can therefore add players from a 60+ AAA, 65+ AAA, 70+ AAA, 75+ AAA team as required to get their roster to 14 players (max of 4 players). Geographical restrictions still apply.
, Jan. 12, 2010
stever
Topic: Teams looking for players
Discussion: Team Looking For TOC Players

Here is the official rule:

13.5 Tournament in Champions
...Teams must use the roster with which they won the Championship at which they qualified. Teams may add players according to 9.2(2). (Note: should read 4.2(2).

4.2(2)Adding Players
Players may be added under the following conditions:
1. The team has qualified.
2. Playrs being added must be from an older deivision. FOR EXAMPLE: A 55+ Major team must select replacement players from a 60+ or older Major team.
3. Players added must not exceed the 20-roster limit.
4. All Divisions: Teams in any division can add players from the next older age group and in the same skill level (FOR EXAMPLE a 50+ AA team may add 55+ AA players, but may not add 55+ AAA or Major players.)
5. The number of players that may be added are limited by the number of players on a roster:
A. Teams restricted to 10 defensive playrs may add 4 players from the next older division if their roster is down to 10 players; teams may add 3 players if their roster is down to 11 players, teams may add 2 players if their roster is down to 12 players, and teams may add 1 player if their teams are down to 13 players.
B. Teams restricted to 11 defensive players may add 4 players from the next older division if their roster is down to 11 players; teams may add 3 players if their roster is down to 12 players, teams may add 2 players if their roster is down to 13 players, and teams may add 1 player if their teams are down to 14 players.
C. All players listed on the Official Roster (not including players added from the next higher age group) must be present at the Qualifier.

Pretty cut-and-dried. Same adjacent states rules also apply.
, Jan. 5, 2010
stever
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Combine Major & Major+?

Southpaw,
Two comments: WRT only two divisions - I think you would see fewer and fewer participants. I think most of the AA teams and players would stop going to tournaments because they can't compete and don't want to spend the money. In my experience the biggest gap in divisions is between AA and AAA, not the upper divisions. I think this might actually exacerbate the problem because some of the mid-level Major players and teams would be trying to play down to the AAA level which would push the AA players even further into the fringe. Something we have to keep in mind when proposing any of these changes is that there are fewer and fewer senior players as we get older and we don't want to create a situation where we "starve" our organizations out of existance because we create more obstacles for the average player. I really don't think the problem is at the Major/AAA/AA level because there seems to be a sufficient number of teams at most tournaments for those brackets. Perhaps a suggestion could be made to consolidate Major + with the top-half of the Major teams, combine the bottom half of the Major teams with the top half of the AAA teams, and combine the bottom half of the AAA teams with the AA teams. I think there is a sufficient amount of data (based on score differentials and rosters) that could be crunched together to make that realistic. Of course, the cost of developing a mathematical model that would do that might be prohibitive and I'm sure it wouldn't satisfy everyone (look at the BCS system).
WRT your second suggestion - it would slightly shorten tournaments but, in an eight-team tournament there would only be two 2-and-out teams left for the consolation tournament (4 in a 16-team tournament, etc).
Good food for thought, though.
, Dec. 31, 2009
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: If the Mayans are right!

Saw a funny (at least I thought it was funny) cartoon about that recently. One Mayan was standing at the door holding a calendar and talking to another. He said, "I ran out of room on the calendar after 2012." The other one said, "That is really going to screw people up in the future."

Of course, 1984 was supposed to be the end...then 2000. Not something I really worry about. Couldn't do anything about it, anyway.
, Dec. 29, 2009
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: poll:who would like

Something I find interesting in this discussion is that out of the fourteen posters who have age identifiable, 3 of the 4 people who are age 60 or older like the game the way it is. Of the 10 identifiable posters 50 or 55, 6 of them want to "dumb down" the bats, balls or both. Of the three whose age is not identifiable, two want to "dumb down" the equipment and the other one doesn't seem to commit either way. It appears, out of this very limited sampling, that the older players are happy with the equipment the way it is but the younger ones think the bats and balls are too lively. I would have thought it would be the other way around because reflexes deteriorate with age. Admittedly, this is a very small, albiet very vocal, sampling. It might be very interesting to find out what level the advocates on each side are. I would guess, although it is only a guess, that most of the players happy with the equipment the way it is are Major/Major + and the ones who want to change the equipment are AA/AAA. I can tell you my 60 Major team doesn't want to roll back the bats or balls.
, Dec. 27, 2009
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: poll:who would like

I have to agree with Bruce. We went to the SPA, ISA, and SSUSA Nationals this year. We didn't win any of them, but we could have if we had played better. We didn't lose any of them because of the home run rule, the PPR, or the equipment. We lost because we were outplayed. The tournaments were very competitive and one or two more hits or one or two less errors would have made the difference in most games. I think there are too many people who advocate changing rules or equipment because it is easier than working to make themselves or their teams better. There are four different categories in senior softball. The trick is to find the right level to play at where you are not in over your head, but at the same time must step up your performance to be successful. Nobody is entitled to play Major or Major Plus just because they are 50 or 55 or 60 or, whatever. It seems like many of the proposed rule or equipment changes are attempts to neutralize the physical advantages of the better players just so others can compete with them. Everyone plays with the same rules and equipment so how can that not be a "level playing field?"
, Dec. 27, 2009
stever
Topic: Bats
Discussion: altered bats

I think we all realize the choice of giving up a bat or being banned is our choice alone and nobody is, technically, CONFISCATING it. No need for sarcasm.
, Dec. 17, 2009
stever
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: divisions

I think the difference is the bottom of the order. Everybody is pretty much the same for the top 5-6 batters. It is the bottom of the order that makes the difference (in other words: the depth of players). Same between AAA and Major.
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