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Thread: Is it time to change the field in FP?

  1. #11
    Certified softball maniac SoftSocDad's Avatar
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    It's not as big a deal as you might think to change infield dimensions. The base posts weren't born there, they were installed once the field was laid out. As for moving fences, that's a different story. I wish more balls were put in play, but I also wish there were more scoring chances in soccer.

    What age? Not sure. I think 10u/12u should remain at 60'.

    Why can't fastpitch allow leading off?

  2. #12
    I eat, sleep and breathe softball quincy's Avatar
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    I agree. Mound and base distance changes would be OK. (Older fields have permeate mounds. I hate those things maybe they will dig them out)

    I am worried that if you move the bases back, the grass needs to move back with it. As long as it is the same for all the ages this should be OK too.

  3. #13
    MTR
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    Quote Originally Posted by CrazyDad View Post
    I guess you are pretty convinced 65' would make the game better. I don't think so at all. It actually starts to take out the things that make it different from baseball. It lessens the effect of speed and slappers. It caters the game to bigger/slower women who don't have as much speed. Speedy small girls are less effective. It makes the game easier for slower defenders giving them an extra second to make a play. 65' opens up a slippery slope to 70'; then 80'; eventually it becomes women's baseball.

    If you are worried about safety of fielders/defenders the thing they should probably do is regulate the ball/ or bats before changing the field dimensions.
    No, I think what would make the game better would be the elimination of special rules (DP/Flex, re-entry, etc.) and bring back the wood bats (ain't gonna happen, but I would settle for aluminum) and that a player would actually learn how to hit instead of relying on the ball speed to get through the infield. Or maybe teach them how to really square around and bunt. I believe that has become lost in softball.

    Same with the gloves. The only thing that makes a fielder better is their developed skill, not the glove. If you cannot field with a $25 glove from K-Mart, paying $300 for a top-level glove from some sporting goods store isn't going to make the difference.

    IMO, if you really want to make the game better, get back to basics. However, if you want hot bats and balls to produce offense where the player lacks, you need to give a little to the defense to make it exciting. And I believe the easiest way to do that is to adjust your field to accommodate the athletes and equipment.

    You seem to think such a move would be the end of the world. I think it would make the game more exciting and level the playing field.

  4. #14
    3sDad
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    Leave it alone, it aint baseball...Lets not make it slowpitch with bigger balls...Its a quicker game....

  5. #15
    Certified softball maniac marriard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Screwball View Post
    Most fields do double-triple duty, so the room is already there. There are few single purpose fastpitch fields anymore, except in schools, but still those are used by LL baseball, etc.
    There are a lot of softball specific fields in South Florida. Most of the parks (including the ones we regularly play at) couldn't move the fences back to accommodate a 225' fence (most still don't accommodate a 200' fence - we played on a field with a 153' fence this weekend for a 10U tournament). I can think of a local D1 college where the very large scoreboard would need to be moved back to allow a 225' fence which would not be cheap. One of the big high schools softball fields back onto a canal so no room there either.

    Changing the ball is probably the easiest and most cost effective solution to implement. No one has to throw away their $300 (or $30) bat or make major field upgrades. Bat manufacturers have to do more R&D to try and make the new ball go as far as the old and while they do that, speed becomes a premium until they succeed... And then repeat.

    40 years from now we'll probably have to use TCB balls for the latest bat but we can cross that bridge when it happens :-)
    Last edited by marriard; 12-12-2011 at 03:55 PM.
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    Certified softball maniac MsDinosaur's Avatar
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    Now that I've started watching fastpitch, baseball is so pathetically s-l-o-w. I was watching an MLB game a while back and just shook my head at how long it took the third baseman to field the ball and make the throw to first. He just about could have gone out for a cup of coffee, LOL.

    I prefer the bang-bang plays of softball and wouldn't want to see it slowed down. It seems to me that it would kill slapping too, which is such a unique part of the game. Even though my own DD will never have the speed for slapping, I appreciate the girls who do and have worked hard to master the technique. I vote to leave the distance as is.

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    Certified softball maniac Momo'sDad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3sDad View Post
    Leave it alone, it aint baseball...Lets not make it slowpitch with bigger balls...Its a quicker game....
    I know it won't happen, but I'd like to see softball go from 12" to 11".

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    Certified softball maniac RichK's Avatar
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    Lots of good points about keeping most FP things the same, but let's make fences longer (or bats and balls less hot). Some high school players can hit 15 more more home runs in a 30 game season, that's too many. And many of the "shots" that clear fences are not shots at all but line drives or fly balls that should stay in the park or be caught.

  9. #19
    Checking out the clubhouse Coach Ron's Avatar
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    The speed of the game of fastpitch is unique, and something I love about the game. When solving any problem, I always try to solve THE PROBLEM at hand, and not the repercussions that are caused by that problem. Other than the fences, there's nothing wrong with the field in fastpitch - especially the infield. Leave it alone, and address the problem, which is hot bats and juiced balls.




    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    No, I think what would make the game better would be.... that a player would actually learn how to hit instead of relying on the ball speed to get through the infield.... Same with the gloves. If you cannot field with a $25 glove from K-Mart, paying $300 for a top-level glove from some sporting goods store isn't going to make the difference.
    Amen brother! I have so many parents approach me - whether I'm coaching travel or even at the varsity level - and ask what kind of bat they should buy for their little darling that will make them a better hitter. They don't always like my answer, which is usually, "It's not the bat."

  10. #20
    MTR
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    I'm sorry. How does moving the field size level the playing field again? by giving the defense a chance?
    That is one of my beliefs. Have seen the effects in the SP game with bases at 70 & 80 feet and don't kid yourself that they are not comparable.

    If those who govern softball want hot bats, balls and offense why change the field? Just keep it as is. Increasing the field just makes room for hotter bats. and then what? open the field some more? As you state yourself, the real regulation needs to happen in the equipment (bats/balls) being used. Not the fields.
    Actually, opening the field has no influence on the equipment. The equipment could be much hotter if it were not for the testing and restrictions which was and still is being led by the ASA in conjunction with the NCAA.

    Leave it alone, it aint baseball...Lets not make it slowpitch with bigger balls...Its a quicker game....
    I must be missing something here. SP softballs are the same size and is a much quicker game than FP.

    Changing the ball is probably the easiest and most cost effective solution to implement. No one has to throw away their $300 (or $30) bat or make major field upgrades. Bat manufacturers have to do more R&D to try and make the new ball go as far as the old and while they do that, speed becomes a premium until they succeed
    Already been done, but getting the FP community to buy into the 52/300 would be like getting them to accept a change in the field

    I prefer the bang-bang plays of softball and wouldn't want to see it slowed down.
    Who said anything about slowing the game down? The game will be just as fast, just that the defense may get an extra what, less than a half a second to try and retire a runner?

    It seems to me that it would kill slapping too, which is such a unique part of the game.
    Have no idea how it would kill slapping. Again, more square footage for the fielders to cover and distance to throw.

    Okay, obviously the majority would be against this. So, if we shouldn't be tinkering with the game, why was there and still is at some level, a demand to move the pitcher's plate back to 43'? Were the reasons not that the players have become good enough to play at that level? Were the pitcher's not overwhelming the batters which actually made the game more boring (unless the pitcher was your DD)? The PP was moved back and the amount of offense increased.

    So, does this mean the PP never should have been moved? I don't think anyone would agree with that, so why so adament about the bases?


    Someone had mentioned that maybe the runners should be allowed to lead off. Can you imagine the changes in the pitching rules this would cause? Wow! Talk about changing the game to women's baseball.


    There seems to be some misconceptions here, especially as it pertains to equipment. The bats and balls, ASA has been working on that for ten years. The manufacturers are there to make money and they are not going to do anything until it becomes necessary. Wilson made that evident when the facemasks were mandated for batters. If the NCAA moves to the 52/300, look for everyone to follow suite and will probably be coordinated with ASA & NFHS.
    Last edited by MTR; 12-12-2011 at 07:55 PM.

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