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Discussion: Equalizier Rule playing down a division

Posted Discussion
Feb. 27, 2007
Men's 65
570 posts
Equalizier Rule playing down a division
I was at the TOC this past weekend and the team I was with got the Equalizer Rule, Which the team took one more player on defense instead of 5 rules
after watching the 5th infielder make play after play to take away some hits and runs make one think is it fair? The scores of the tournament shows that almost all the games was very close. the Championship game was nip and tuck all the way where our pitcher used the 5th infielder to perfection. If anyone else was there and saw the All State/Hollis game what did you think?
Don Ward
Feb. 27, 2007
Men's 65
601 posts
I was there and watched some of those games. In this case one team was forced to compete against teams in a lower age bracket because of a poor showing in their own bracket showing up. In this case I think the handicap rule was fairly applied and then used perfectly by the older team. If there were two teams there under the same circumstances and only three there in the younger age bracket something else probably would have had to been done. It's not the fault of any one the teams participating, it's the fault of the teams that did not show up.
Pete Delagne
Feb. 27, 2007
Fred Scerra
Men's 80
542 posts
I agree. I have played both and the playing with the middle fielder is a big advantage over a team that is playing with 10.
Feb. 27, 2007
Men's 60
246 posts
The 55 team that won the T o C 50/55 Major Plus would have rather played the 55 major teams and given them the advantage of 5 runs or an extra defensive player.

Our concern going in was that we were not as fast nor as powerful as some of the 50 major plus teams. This turned out to be true. We felt a 3rd or 4th place finish would be a good tournament but to win was outstanding for us.

We thought the stronger home run hittting teams would hit over our extra infielder. However, Gary Deaton's strategy of pitching away from their power and putting the extra infileder in the opposite direction worked like a charm most of the time. He would fill in the vacated hole and honestly with the quality of our defensive if you hit it on the ground about 80% of the time we got the out.

The Ploog team used a 5 man infield against us and with their speed we did not get one gapper that any of us can remember. We barely beat those guys.

We were very impressed with the power from Ploog and especially from Mac II. We did not get to play against Motown or the Specialty Tank/Railtrust bunch but did watch them play and again that had some smashers and speed! As always Al Estes had good power and excellent defense.

In the future, we hope to just play in the 55 major plus division and let the younger guys go at it!

Great tournament and we enjoyed some outstanding umpires, excellent free banquet, nice awards and best of all some truely outstanding competition from great teams.

We'll see some of you guys down the road in Kansas, Wisconsin, St. Louis, Vegas, North Carolina and Phoenix!
Feb. 27, 2007
Men's 55
16 posts
So, let me get this straight. You would pitch a right handed hitter outside and play 3 infielders to the right side of second base? Sort of like the Barry Bonds shift?
Feb. 27, 2007
Men's 60
246 posts
And like magic, it worked. Here is the senario. Right hand batter comes up and is way off of the plate. We pitch him outside and have three fielders between first and second. The pitcher falls back to a position left of second base towards the shortstop. If batter goes with the pitch he hits to three infielders. If he tries to pull the ball back to the left of second he will tend to fly out. That has been our experience. Works most of the time but not all of the time.

If the right hand batter jams the plate or is relatively close we put three infielders between second and third and have the pitcher fall back towards the first base side of second.

The whole key to the five man is to force the batter to try and do something that he is not use to doing and that gives us the advantage!
Feb. 27, 2007
Men's 60
547 posts
What happens when the batter uses the overlap grip, thereby extending the length of the bat.............allowing him to pull the ball through the middle? Hope your pitcher doesn't get hit by an irritated batter.
Feb. 27, 2007
Men's 60
547 posts
Of course, I would not do that. I hit fly balls.
Feb. 28, 2007
Men's 55
88 posts
Hi Don - I am of course biased because my team lost to you guys, but we all did not like the equalizer rule.
First off, I think your team is a great bunch of guys with very good skills and you could have won without the 11 man advantage. You guys are a class act and always a pleasure to compete against. I'll list the unfair advantage reasons we talked about after getting whooped by you guys.
1 - We have been battling variations of Terrell, Gary, Bruce and company for the last 3 years with Kelly's, Cal Thunder and now MAC II. We have had some epic battles. Put another infielder on either team and there is an unfair advantage.
2 - I think that AllState Miken is a first year 55 team and still as good or better than most 50 teams.
3 - If there were no 55 Major Plus teams, you guys should have been put in with 55 Major and forced to give up the equializer rather than play in the 50's with 11 fielders.
4 - The other new rule change in Major Plus allowing unlimited runs every inning virtually eliminates the 5 run equalizer option. When there is a 5 run limit inning, most teams would take the runs in the past because it took a while to make them up. Now with every inning open, a team can make up 5 in their first at bat.
5 - If a 55 team must play down to get in the field, we feel they should play by the rules they move to, rather than be given an extra fielder. The equalizer may be fair when moving from Major Plus to Major or Major to AAA, but not in Major Plus . Note Bruce's previous post about combining 50 and 55 Major plus to get more teams. Most agreed that the skill level was still pretty equal. We may play in a 40's tourney this season and I'm sure we will have to play to their rules rather than be given another fielder.
6 - In our first inning , lead off shot normally base hit, thrown out by 5th man. Next guy on base, three hitter shot normal base hit, double play turned by 5th infielder. End of story, our team is shaking their heads and starting to think which is never good in softball, ha-ha.
7 - As Audie and you said, you guys used that advantage perfectly and it affected our momentum and changed some swings.
All that said, you guys are the Champions and you deserve it because you played great. Now stay up in 55's from now on will ya?
Congratulations to all on the All State Miken Team!
George Hall

Feb. 28, 2007
Men's 65
3146 posts
Great post, George! We are pretty much in agreement. The extra fielder makes a huge difference. I still wonder why we weren't moved to 55 Major.
I also like the suggestion that if last year's champions are unable to attend, the second place team should be invited.

btw, this is the second year in 55 that I have played with Allstate MIken. Going forward we are Hollis Appraisals/Combat.
Our next scheduled tournament will be the SSUSA Springnationals. Hope to see you there. Hopefully we will be playing with the old guys!
Feb. 28, 2007
Men's 55
88 posts
Hi Bruce - guys with sweet swings like you never seem to age. I know we played against you somewhere last year, maybe SPA. Joe Rinaldi is another guy who never ages and Kelly's always has an 11 man when Joe is playing defense because he covers 2 spots. That advantage is hard to overcome.
I asked Terry to consider inviting the winners from All Senior Orgs Worlds. There would certainly be more Major Plus Teams if they included LVSSA, SPA, USSSA, NSA, ISA, etc. winners, and it would truly be a Tournament of Champions.
We are going to Spring Worlds in Palm Springs next I think.
55 Major Plus looks to have a pretty good group of teams this year. Should be fun and competetive enough for you guys to leave us alone. C-ya soon.
March 5, 2007
Men's 50
3114 posts
Thanks for all the info and insights.
I almost feel like I was there.
I wanted to know what went down and why
and you guys have said it all.
Congrats to Bruce and his band of old warriors
and welcome to Mac 2 to Major plus.
Big George, you guys have a terrific team and
great bunch of guys
especially that you can put up with Mike Cleary (that's a joke. Hi Mikeee)
See you all in Palm Springs.
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