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Discussion: SPA v SSUSA

Posted Discussion
Nov. 13, 2014
DCPete
380 posts
SPA v SSUSA
Just interested in anyone's opinion; how do these 2 associations compare when it comes to running their tournaments?
Is either one better or different than the other?
Nov. 13, 2014
Robo2
238 posts
In my opinion, both are run well; have good umpires; and use great fields. My only issue with both (very minor and not to be critical) is limiting HRs. I have stated many times, if one allows unlimited HRs (except in last inning where one could allow 2 max) one would see a quicker separation of talented teams and quicker times of games. Limiting HRs is a regression to the mean. They are still outstanding organizations.
Nov. 13, 2014
joel 1975
131 posts
ssusa seems to have more tournements limit hr's except with the big boys always been that way major plus should be able to hit all they can
Nov. 13, 2014
LP
317 posts
To me the best and most fair rule SSUSA ever had was the one up HR rule, it evened out the teams pretty well. A good base hitting team can compete with a power hitting team, example--the power hitting team hits a home run and the base hitting team doesn't hit a home run, then the rest of the power teams hits are singles.
Nov. 13, 2014
Perl
199 posts
Both do a good job.

IIMO SSUSA does a better job rating teams.

SSUSA website is great. SPA website needs some work.

SPA hits a better ball. The SSUSA ball, the Trump Stote, in an absolute sock in high temperatures/high humidity.

SPA usually provides a score keeper and a working score board. SSUSA normally does not provide these services.

Both usually play at nice complexes and have decent umps.

Two outstanding organizations that we are fortunate to have.

Nov. 13, 2014
garyheifner
604 posts
SSUSA has more teams at their World Tournament thus are spread out over many venues so each age group seems like a different tournament. However, no complaints.

SPA has their World in Dalton at one large complex. So, it seems much more 1st class. Opening parade, tribute to vets, Christian overtones, two umps, official score keeper.

As stated above, both are good.

My team bases out of the Chicago area and we have very few SPA opportunities unless we travel east. SSUSA gives us many more opportunities to play.

March 19, 2015
gobama
9 posts
SSUSA enforces their rules as written and SPA seems to make deals with certain teams/players i.e. the border states rule. In case none of you know it a state of 2.5 million people,Mississippi, doesn't exist according to SPA. So if Mississippi is one of yours teams border states you can just skip over it and grab players from the next state over. Something is rotten in Denmark!!!

I love playing tournaments under both organizations and both are good onsite with management.

My one suggestion. For the awards give the guys a T-shirt rather than a plaque or china made plastic coffee mug
March 19, 2015
tg69
374 posts
Gobama, sounds like you were in Montgomery last weekend.
March 20, 2015
gobama
9 posts
I was not there but was well aware of the situation. I have talked to several SPA players and not found anyone who agrees with the ruling to allow this to happen. A rule book is useless if the organization allows a violation like this to a clear black and white rule. Would be different if the problem was real and say team A could only find 9 players in their home state and the border states and needed to come further to field a team. Not the case here. Team A has a 19-20 man roster and it just so happens the players in violation are major players.
I just want the border states rule abolished so everybody is on an equal playing field or I want it enforced as written so everybody is on an equal playing field. Exceptions for one team or certain players tends to make one think of the ole backroom deal being done and when you then have to face this team it leaves a sour taste in the mouth. We all spend our money to come play these tournaments and playing for second place is not the desired outcome
March 20, 2015
Omar Khayyam
1336 posts
Have limited experience with SPA since they have so few tournaments on the west coast. Went to one in Carson City a few years ago (it was to be the first of a five-year run of tournaments…but was the only year) and found it well run (as are SSUSA) with quality umps (ditto SSUSA).

We noted that SPA was much more particular about bats, inspecting each bat individually and then certifying it with a stamp (no stamp on bat and you're kicked out of tournament). Don't have a problem with that although it sure slowed down registering by having to pull out all possible bats from your bag.

Also, SPA had some rule that allowed a short rest break for older teams rather than back to back games in summer heat. Thought that was wise. I liked the prayer for the teams and tournament. Who doesn't need more prayer? I would play SPA again, but it seems unlikely after their short experiment in the area.

Our team is going to play 4 SSUSA tournaments this year, after playing only 1 a couple of years back. That says something, although we had to up our self-sponsored tournament costs because SSUSA are much more expensive, a little less than twice as high. We might reconsider so many in future because of cost. We can play more than seven tournaments in California for the cost of four SSUSA.
March 25, 2015
bigboy11
17 posts
To make things even then , each team should have the same number of states to draw from.
March 26, 2015
Garocket
Men's 55
258 posts
Tennessee is the lucky dog in this drawing, they can have players from 9 states

Tennessee
Georgia
Alabama
Mississippi
Arkansa
North Carolina
Misouri
Kentucky
Virginia

And poor little SC can only have 3
SC
NC
Ga
March 26, 2015
bigboy11
17 posts
That's right, so what does a team do if they can't get any players from there bordering states? Just not play? Level the playing field. Same number of states to draw from. I have a friend from Louisiana that can't get any players from Texas cause they have so many teams in there own back yard, same with players from Arkansas, so what can they do. Quit I guess. He'll it's hard to find 65 year old players already.
March 26, 2015
SSUSA Staff
2945 posts
Missouri also has nine states to draw from: Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Tennessee
March 26, 2015
neck10
681 posts
Michigan has 3 ohio Indiana wisconson
March 26, 2015
4Four4
Men's 60
87 posts
Neck- Mich add OntarioCA, some great travel players available - DH/NY
March 26, 2015
17Black
Men's 55
399 posts
What if you lived in Maine & had a team?

Small population and only border New Hampshire?

(1)
March 26, 2015
bigboy11
17 posts
I would like for someone in the home office to explain how this is fair??
March 27, 2015
DCPete
380 posts
What would prevent a team from Maine (for example) from saying they're "based" in New Hampshire so they would have more bordering states?
March 27, 2015
Jawood
Men's 50
926 posts
DC, I think the state you are based out of is determined by where the majority of your roster lives. If it wasn't that way, you'd only see teams from a few states.

Maine does get the shaft, if there are even any teams up there.
March 27, 2015
SSUSA Staff
2945 posts
bigboy11 - The Bordering States Issue was raised at the most recent SSUSA Rules Committee meetings in Tupelo, MS in December ... Here is the relevant section from those meeting minutes ...

BORDERING STATES ISSUE(S) – The request by players in certain smaller/less dense Eastern States for bordering states relief was discussed ... The matter was tabled and referred to the SSUSA Office Staff to complete a study to determine Player Density Statistics by geographic region ... SPA is to be contacted to offer them an opportunity, should they so desire, to participate.

That study is ongoing, and the results will be presented to the Rules Committee at this year's meetings in late November or early December ... Rules changes are made only at that time each year ... You are welcome to attend and participate or to contribute through formal written correspondence or by email ... Message Board commentary is excluded from consideration in matters involving potential Agenda inclusion ...

DCPete - The Roster composition/building software tracks the home state of each player added to an Annual Master or specific Tournament roster ... The "home state" for a team is determined by the majority (or plurality in the event of no majority) of the players on that roster (thanks Jawood) ...

March 27, 2015
DCPete
380 posts
Ok, so since the existing border-state rule is unfair, why not go to a Regional rule where teams can roster any player living within their region?
Regions could be based on population and/or number of existing SSUSA teams so there might be a New England region for example where a team could roster any player living in Maine, N. Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut or Rhode Island.
Anything unfair about this option?
March 27, 2015
SSUSA Staff
2945 posts
DCPete ... Your premise that the existing "...border-state rule is unfair..." is not an agreed presumption by the SSUSA Rules Committee ... That's the reason the player and team distribution statistical analysis is being undertaken and why we will seek the input of our friends at SPA ... There will be a lot of options on the table, and any, or none, of them may be enacted this coming winter ... As mentioned previously in this thread, we welcome your actual Rules Committee participation and written conventional mail or email input in the process to state your case or ideas ... We do not, however, consider Message Board commentary when it comes to determining the Rules Committee meeting Agenda items ...

March 28, 2015
DCPete
380 posts
OK; wasn't really presuming that the border-state rule is unfair, but that just seems to be the consensus of the board members on this thread.
March 30, 2015
gobama
9 posts
I think rather than trying to look and equalize number of border states you should look at population density of the border states. For the issue involved in this discussion you have Louisiana as home state and Texas,Mississippi,and Arkansas to pull from. I dont see any reason you cant field one 60AAA team from a 30 million pool and not have to come to Alabama which has 3 home based 60's and a bunch of players on 3 other teams.
As i stated earlier this rule exception is not being done to help field a team for someone who is having trouble filling a roster. It is to build a powerhouse and win baby. I fault the SPA staff for not doing the research. They may have been mislead and agreed to this in error but it is not fair to every other team in SPA who is complying with all rules as written.
The relief that was offered up was well if this team is better than the rest of the 60AAA teams in the southeast circuit we will bump them to major. Hello
March 30, 2015
bigboy11
17 posts
Well gobama, at our age group of 65+, it's tough getting players from our border states cause of the number of teams in the states of Texas and Arkansas. Mississippi has been basically non existent . So it's not about just winning as you stated . It's more about just being able to play. Maybe you just too worried about winning instead of just competing.
March 30, 2015
gobama
9 posts
Well bigboy11 you can bet that I and most everyone else playing is playing to win. You can bet one more thing we have read the clear and concise rule book and never asked for an exception to a rule like this. I know of no other team that has either. Im not talking about your team in 65+ but ONE team in 60 ball that has a dugout full of players every tournament we see them at and still SPA has allowed them to violate border states rule in order to add 3 really really good players. The sportsman paradise of Louisiana where baseball is bigtime I would think has 14 good 60-65 year old players to field a competitive team.
All any of us can ask for is a level playing field and equal enforcement of the rulebook OR at least change the rulebook
March 30, 2015
bigboy11
17 posts
That's all we ask for is a level playing field also. How is it level when some teams get to draw from say 7-9 states and others from only 3-4? Please explain in your words how this is a level playing field?
March 30, 2015
gobama
9 posts
With the case of Louisiana it is pretty simple. They have a 30+ million pool of residents to pull from with their own state and the border states. If you cant build a 65+ team from that pool something is wrong. With states like Rhode Island,Vermont,Montana,the Dakotas etc then there is a legit problem.
I have no idea where the border states rule came from or why it was put in. It is a rule though and it should be strictly enforced as written with no exception especially not to allow one team to attempt to build a major team.
Please explain to me how it is level to allow one team to violate a rule and no other teams knew they could skip over Mississippi--it doesnt exist. They were never told about this--only the one team has done this that I know of. Just write it in black and white that Louisiana teams can come to Alabama and get major players just so everyone playing SPA ball is aware of it and that it is legal. That is my gripe in a nutshell about this whole situation
March 31, 2015
paul0784
Men's 60
218 posts
How about the rule that a Major team can have up to 3 Major+ players on their roster. Teams in the Northeast area MASS, NY, RI, NH, and ME are at a disadvantage because there aren't many Major+ teams in this area that are active if any at all. So when the teams try to play Major in the rest of the country they have trouble competing. When you look at the total number of teams playing tournaments in this area could be a total of maybe 17-20 teams in all age brackets in the whole Northeast area. Whereas on the West Coast and some other areas there are probably 17-20 teams in each age bracket? So, is that the same playing field?
May 11, 2015
gobama
9 posts
I agree with you totally there are regions and age divisions where it is hard to field a competitive team within the border states parameters. The circumstance which I reported that started this whole discussion is not one of them. Losisiana is a baseball mega hotbed and it borders Texas yet they are allowed to skip over Mississippi and come to Alabama to add major level players to play AAA ball on a team with 16 legal players. It aint right and there is no way to spin it. SPA should just do away with border states rule totally and let the recruiting begin
May 11, 2015
bigboy11
17 posts
Dang , gobsmacked must be upset that whoever that team is hasn't asked him to play. Get over it or get better.
May 11, 2015
bigboy11
17 posts
Last message your intended to say gobama.
May 12, 2015
gobama
9 posts
Wow, hello, earth to bigboy are you out there earth to bigboy--lol. Im just picking at you man. Here is one last try and if it fails then I give up. There is a black and white written rule. It is plain as day in the spa rulebook. It is the border state rule and this applies to the AAA level. One team and only one team in all age groups registered with spa is being allowed to violate that rule--at least I have found only one team. Its like your team being allowed 3 strikes but this one team you play[and they are one of the best teams you play] being allowed 4. Everybody else plays by the rule as written but this one team.

As to your personal reference about me. I have a team. A dang good team. Im as happy as I can be on my team. We strive to abide by the rules as written. I probably wont get over it until the competition is abiding by the rules or the rulebook is changed. I strive everyday to get better but this old body peaked about 40 years ago. Just leaves a bad taste when that one team gets 4 strikes and everybody else gets 3--follow the analogy. I am playing with my team of choice now and have no desire to play with the other team. Im happy as I can be and play with a great group of guys
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