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Discussion: ball and helmets

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June 6, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
4150 posts
ball and helmets
had a long talk this past weekend with some higher up staff memembers of ssusa while in reno about these things.we prlloy talk an hour so discussing the the merits of the newer ball(52)and the wearing of helmets when hitting or running for CR's.they were very receptive and we/they came out of the discussion,with a hey lets look into this.thanks guys for listening and some of your input on the subjects
June 6, 2011
Men's 50
3114 posts
Good luck Robert
trying to change our game to a kinder, gentler
one that guys who are too afraid or slow
would want to play.
Dumbing down the ball was/is NEVER called for
or a good idea for a zillion reasons.

Of course SSUSA is going to be gracious
in response to anything you might bring up
whether it's "S..t" or shinola.
They are gracious people.
I wouldn't read too much into it
if I were you.
Same old tired, slow, self interested thinking
isn't going to change a thing.

You don't give up, though.
I guess that has some merit
and we do agree about SPA Tournaments.
June 6, 2011
Omar Khayyam
1241 posts
Hit a ball two weeks ago right by an excellent third baseman I know. It was only about 4-5 feet away, a mishit (was aiming for the hole), and in the past a sure out. But I hit it with a composite and it had steam on it, and the third baseman didn’t budge. I’m not sure he even saw it!

Talking to him afterwards (not specifically about my hit), he wondered out loud if we would ever go back to double walls. He is not getting any quicker as he ages, and he missed the time when very few got through him or by him.

Slow? Not by his age group standards—quicker than the average infielder. Afraid? Never came up. Like all third basemen, he’s been drilled now and then over the years. Kinder, gentler? Not in his vocabulary—always plays full out. Discouraged? You bet.

The desire for a slower game (through bat or ball changes) is not motivated primarily by fear or inadequacy, but by a positive desire for a more balanced game where defense has a role, where hitting is more than just booming a long ball, where base running and strategy can make a winning difference.

People like me who are willing to retire their Miken are yearning to return to the game of only ten years ago, the game we’ve played for decades, the game that attracted men and led them to play with joy into their retirement years, the game that likely would have the continued growth in senior players that we anticipated before the introduction of the composite bat changed the game and led to a decrease in new senior participants.
June 6, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
4150 posts
omar i played 3rd this weekend for our team in reno,and i can tell you balls were moving,if it you wasn't with in a step of it you weren't getting to it.i was lucky enough to play at golden eagle on the turf so didn't have to worry about bad grounds keeping and such.balls did skip thru tho and before some of the outfielders could get over to cover they were to the fence.this combo of bat and ball is way to hot for senior players.we are getting older and slower why do we have to endanger each other to have fun,just plain stupid.......

i had a few hit at me and b/c i'm fairly quick handed still i was able to field them,but it was just throw the glove to where i seen the ball to be coming at and hope i got the right spot.there is no using proper fielding mech's with this type of ball,it is more uh-oh protect your self here comes another missile.

oh injuring another play with a batted ball is not what i call fun,by the way.....
June 6, 2011
348 posts

I like the way the game is now but if they were to move the fences back in to 270'-280' use a good ball and get rid of the composits that would be fine with me. I think the base hitters would be the guys who suffered more because the fielders can cheat more with the shorter fences.

just my $02.

thank You:

June 6, 2011
348 posts

I like the way the game is now but if they were to move the fences back in to 270'-280' use a good ball and get rid of the composits that would be fine with me. I think the base hitters would be the guys who suffered more because the fielders can cheat more with the shorter fences.

just my $02.

thank You:

June 6, 2011
Men's 50
3114 posts
If you can't take the heat, boys,
get out of the kitchen.
What gives you the right to change the game
for the great majority of players who like the game,
support and invest in it is.
You just don't get it, do you?
You want a very minority opinion to overpower the great majority opinion because why?
A)Because you think your idea is better?
B)Because you don't want to get hurt?
C)Because you've gotten too slow to compete?
D)Because you cater to and want to please
softball people who will reward you for your

A and B but not C.
B and C but not D.
All of the above.

You whine, cajole, rationalize and cry
that the game
has gotten too fast for you.
Why did you bother going to Reno
knowing full well you'd be in grave danger
with all of those players you care so much about.
Why not protest and show you have some integrity.
See anybody get crippled in Reno, Robert?
No one got crippled or maimed last weekend, either
or last year or any year I've played in Reno
or senior ball for that matter.
And what matter if they did.
Risk is part of what gives us the adrenaline
to protect ourselves and perform at a high level.
At least some of us.
Ever hear no gain no pain or
No guts no glory.

That 52 core ball takes the game
too far down for most to enjoy.
It's that simple.

June 6, 2011
Men's 60
78 posts
I appreciate the dialog taking place here and wish to contribute. I manage and play with the Greco Hitmen, 55 Major Plus. I also play with GSF, 60 Major Plus. Though I played 50 AA and 50 AAA for a few years and thoroughly enjoyed it, I have been playing Major and/or Major Plus for the past 4 years. I'm 64 years old and desire to compete against the best players I can find to play.

When I first started playing senior tournament ball in 2004, I was aged 57 and brought with me a preconceived notion of what Major Plus ball was all about....HOMERUNS, right?

WRONG. Maybe in some areas...but not at 55 Major Plus and not at 60 Major Plus. True, there are a lot of homers hit...maybe 3-5 per side on average in my experience. And occasionally in favorable windy conditions, both teams might hit 10. But, in 4 years and over 500 tournament games it is a very rare event indeed that even one team hits 10 HRs in a game, and even rarer still that both teams do it. My stats show no more than 6 games in over 500 played that have had both teams hit 10 or more HRs in one game.

Winning in Major Plus ball is all about the little things in the game...and executing them well. There is great defense in Major Plus, great baserunning, and great pitching, along with great hitting. If not, you do not win. Major Plus is simply about playing the game at the highest level possible...hustling and making plays and competing AS IF IT MATTERS.


The ball is hard...and true, the bats can be lethal...I have cited published research data on this board that confirms composite bats produce batted ball speeds (BBS) in excess of 104 mph...too fast for many players to react to protect themselves. I would not mourn the loss of composite bats...nor would I lobby aggressively for maintaining the status quo with respect to the balls used. But I don't mind them either.

What I want to add to this discussion is to caution against using the kind of blanket statements in previous posts that give the impression that all defense is dead and gone from the current game.

That is simply not true. Not every ball is hit squarely on the button. Many, many, MANY balls are popped up and drop in...that is not a result of composite bats and lively balls. Many, many, MANY routine ground balls are booted or thrown away...not because of bats and lively balls. More 'can-a-corn' fly balls are dropped because of poor judgment than because they came off composite bats. This is true in all divisions including Major Plus.

Our recent 55 Major Plus "IF" championship game in Reno was decided by the defense played by our opponent. They certainly hit the ball well, as we did. But, all who saw it should agree...the difference in the outcome was in the defensive plays made by the superb Nighthawks outfield.

Finally, has anyone proposed a rule change that allows players to vote on the bats or balls they want to use? It seems to me if there is consensus on this subject, the players should be allowed to use the equipment they want.
June 6, 2011
Men's 50
3114 posts
Colonel, suhhhh.
You're guys featuring Freddie and Steve Imlay
at the bat were a terrific team
and represented your unit proud.
The Nighthawks are a monster good team
with Billy the pitcher whom is one of the absolute best if not the best senior pitchers in the game.
Congratulations on playing so well and putting together as good a team as could give the Nighthawks
all they could handle.
Great seeing you and look forward to seeing you,
June 6, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
4150 posts
see DD the prol would be,that vote will always be hitter weighted.also with these senior bats there are less mishits with these bats.we won some games on defense also in reno,but it was only b/c the ball was hit right at the fielder at an inopertune time for the offense,a couple of feet either way and the fielder has no chance what so ever of fielding the ball,that is what this hot bat/ball combo does.back with metal bats and blue dots,i could go 5 steps easily either way to go get balls,now if only a batter mishits a ball which is on rare occasions.

no oe is doubting that if you don't make the normal play,you most likely will loose,but there are more plays where the fielder doesn't even stand a chance,as where they used to before composite bats.
June 7, 2011
222 posts
if it aint broke why try to fixit. chill and enjoy it. if you don't like it stay home spend money on lawn darts
June 7, 2011
Men's 65
2229 posts
DD-nice to see a real view of the major plus game here with some sanity mixed in and no uncalled-for name calling. TheBull (Mike) and I were discussing major plus just this morning. Mike is capable of that 450 foot HR, but he is also becoming a much better base hitter, and you just pointed out the importance of that. He was surprised at the statement I made that the average is only around 5 hrs a game for a lot of the M+ teams. I also made the point that defenses were better, and a lot of times the defense can take an opposing team's offense out of it at the right time and win you a game, especially in higher divisions. The steps up from AAA to major and to major plus are all around steps up-all facets of the game. They do the little things-the fundamental things better. Pitchers are better-especially defensively-that middle is just not as open as the lower divisions. They don't just serve it up. This is the game WITH composite bats.
If you took the composites out and inserted the combo they basically replaced-thin wall or double wall metal bats and the 47/525 ball, I don't believe the change would be earth changing. Guys would still hit the ball hard, there would still be a lot of home runs, and you would still see smoking line drives. Pitchers would still not have sufficient time to react to a ball that is tagged up the middle. What would be lost to some is the mis-hit homerun, and a most of hitters would suffer from the smaller sweet spot, some more than others. I would be happy with either. From what I've heard and seen, the 52/275 is too big a step back for the majority of players, and I have talked to a lot of you. I still maintain it is easier to change the bat than the ball.
R&R-55 major now -has one of those teams that has a great defense that affects every team they play. It does matter!
DD-what do you and your guys think about helmets for hitting and running the bases? I cannot even imagine it in slow pitch. I keep picturing Mike Macenko or Bruce Meade batting in a helmet and start laughing uncontrollably.
June 8, 2011
mad dog
Men's 65
4150 posts
really JR thats all you can come up with.....what is wrong with wanting to be able to go home to loved ones after playing a recreational game,for a game we don't get paid to play,in fact we lay out a lot of our own money,why do we need to lay out more for medical bills.

webbie i don't think they would look bad wearing a helmet,or at least i wouldn't laugh at those to big houses...LOL..
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