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Discussion: Greenish-Yellow balls

Posted Discussion
Dec. 9, 2008
Men's 50
3114 posts
Greenish-Yellow balls
Happy Holidays, one and all.
My eyes are getting worse all the time.
When I have trouble seeing the ball clearly off the bat most times
I attribute it to too much sugar or old age
from further scrutiny a real problem seems to emerge.
Yellow balls which we use almost exclusively anymore at tournaments
blend in all too well with greenish yellow backgrounds we find
prevalent at most parks.
I played NorCal a couple of months ago
at 3rd base and had trouble seeing the ball off the bat
and figured it was me
till I saw the best senior 3rd baseman in the country, Joe Cuneo for Mac 2,
have trouble on 2 balls in the same inning.
He said he had trouble picking the ball up too, off the bat
and the background was green and yellow.

This is a real issue of safety for the pitchers and the infielders
in the era of good balls and 1.2 bats
and can be easily adjusted if we need it to be.
Go back to white ones or try another color.
There's Mango Maroon or Bully and Bogie Black or Bashbro Blue
or Franny Fuschia?

Seriously, has anyone else experienced this phenomenon?
Dec. 9, 2008
Men's 50
178 posts
the problem may be that the balls get to dirty no matter what the color... while umping the pitcher is always asking for a cleaner ball and thats the youngns i'm talking about..
Dec. 9, 2008
Men's 60
240 posts
einstein, You're right about the greenish-yellow balls being difficult to pick up on fields with a lot of green background. However, many of the fields in the South have infields with a lot of red clay. On these fields the white balls turn orange and match the infield dirt. They are even more difficult to pick up than the greenish-orange balls. The TDs should probably consider which balls are best for their particular tournament. Thanks, hombre
Dec. 9, 2008
Men's 50
41 posts
The problem I used to have years ago was when the ball is hit hard it seems to have a traser effect and when it starts to get dark it makes it hard to tell the ball from the tail
Dec. 9, 2008
Men's 40
105 posts
I personally think the field lights have alot to do with it. It's hard for me to pickup the ball at dusk as well, but some of the fields we play on don't have the type of lighting that works with a fast moving ball.

Difficult to find what's best 100% of the time...maybe we could stay young and still know what we do now...hahaha!
Dec. 9, 2008
Men's 50
3114 posts
Hey Guys,
I dug all the responses and
it looks like, again, I didn't make it clear enough
what I was talking about.
At the point when the ball is struck
the more contrast there is between the coloring of the ball
and the coloring of the background
the easier to pick up the ball quickly off the bat
and react to it.
Since the ball we use is yellow-greenish and parks are full
of yellow-greenish grass, and bushes and trees
oftentimes it's hard to impossible to pick up the ball as it is being struck
and when you have less than a second to react like at third, first or pitcher
it can be hard to impossible to be sure.
This can/should be alleviated by going back to white balls.

At NorCal this year
in Brentwood
the TD got it and switched the balls for us.
Dec. 9, 2008
Men's 70
267 posts
Joe. I dont know if you were sober back then and may not remember (I know I wasn't), in the year 1986 the Wimbledon Tennis Club changed from the traditional White tennis balls to yellow balls so that they were more visible for television cameras. High Definition tv today really likes Optic-Yellow (i.e. Greenish) or better yet Chartreuse!!

So, my take on this discussion is that when Senior Softball begins getting some coverage from ESPN, wed better have a ball thats camera friendly and not so much defenseman friendly so we can get the exposure and money!!! LOL

Bashbro1 (Ruth 60s Major playing out of Kent, WA Farm Land)
Dec. 10, 2008
Men's 50
55 posts
Hello to all, I've been hanging out on the backside just monitoring some of the conversations but this is one that's close to home for me, so I'll say something this time. I spent some time in practical graphic arts (means I ran a sign shop for awhile) and scientifically, one of the most easily perceived colors is the optic yellow currently being used on softballs and tennis balls. There's a good reason why firetrucks and emergency vehicles are moving to other colors than red, the chartreuse or optic yellow colors are more easily seen.

An interesting aside was that some of the Bolle sunglasses come with a couple of sets of interchangeable lenses, one of which is a kind of a teal color. I tried them and found that the optic yellow ball would literally nearly jump out at me. I was playing third at the time and it scared the dickens out of me. Sometimes, supplementing your equipment can help.
Dec. 10, 2008
Fred Scerra
Men's 80
542 posts
I have that problem with White or Yellow against a dark green back ground. But for me it is because I am color blind.

When playing outfield against a dark green tree background I can't pick up the ball till it gets above the trees. Pitching I don't seem to have that problem of picking up the ball, just getting my feet to move.
Dec. 10, 2008
mad dog
Men's 65
4150 posts
i like hombre am in the south,well texas,and when a white ball starts to get dirty here it blends into the inf dirt.gets to be pretty hairy trying to find it off the bat,even the kids have a prol with it.with the yellow i have a prol at nite with it,don't know why but I do,mostly when its in the air.
another prol i've found is my catcher or the ump with similar color shirt as balls being used,and them straight behind the plate,its then i'll tell my catcher at least to move to the side a bit.
don't what the answer to the ball color is,but wish we could find a solution.
Dec. 11, 2008
Men's 65
326 posts
Try a pair of yellow lens and you shall see a big difference.
Commonly used indoor or night for low light applications to enhances contrast.
Dec. 11, 2008
Nancy Allen
Men's 55
793 posts
Einstein, can't see? Want to ump?

I have used the Bolle lenses for the optic yellow balls before, and they really do show up, but I do not see distance as well with them. Of course there is no help when the sun is directly in your eyes or at night. The blind use a beeper ball, never mind, just kidding.
Dec. 11, 2008
mad dog
Men's 65
4150 posts
oh nancy you bad girl,let jo-jo be,we don't need him umping :):)
i've tried the yellow lenses,even for the sun they help,but its at nite where i have the problem with the yellow balls.and at dusk forget it i don't care what ball it is,i can't see it,and i have supposedly good eyesight.
Dec. 12, 2008
Men's 50
3114 posts
Hey Dog.
Sounds like you've heard about me umping.
E=mc1, 2, 3 and yo'r out.
Happy holidays, Nancy.
Have you ever heard players complain about not being able
to see the optic ball off the bat due to the background
being all green and plush?
Dec. 12, 2008
mad dog
Men's 65
4150 posts
kinda of jo-jo.LOL
i've had prols with diff backgrounds with the yellow and the white balls.the greenish backgrounds(if its the netting they put up sometimes)is usaully no prol with me. its a lighter color green and lighter backgroundsthat are my prol.also have a prol at dusk and i guess thats a lot of peoples prol young or old.i really don't like to wear glasses to play in,just something about them bug me.i only use them if i have to.
hey good luck this yr and say hi to little bbq for me.
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