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Crazy ideas, but why not?

Apr 16, 2013
604
28
Absolute crazy rambling, but really curious about these ideas and maybe will spark a good discussion.

Allow pitchers to throw overhand. As I was reading the comments in the other thread about such a large pitcher shortage, why not allow girls to throw overhand? Throwing underhand takes such a massive time invest that gets zero benefit with any other position or sport. It's also the most efficient way for the body to actually "throw" something. There would be very few, if any, that could actually throw the ball harder overhand. Maybe make some new rules or stipulations for it, but why not give it a go?

Enact a new bat standard for 14u and above. Almost any fully grown girl can hit the ball over a 200ft fence. At 15u most all baseball goes to the BBCOR standard. That's -3 bats with a .50 BPF. The game flat out changes. Suddenly that 325ft corner becomes a massive challenge. There are very few HR's in HS now. Most teams have zero HRs after a season. Even now in LL they have a whole new standard that just started this year. So why can't softball have something similar? Let's say mandate a 1.0 BPF, -8 standard at 14u+. Baseball has gone through 2 new standards in just 7 years, so no matter how much parents complain, it's still VERY doable. For softball, bats are hotter than hell. Baseball massively deadens their bats though at the same time the field size massively increases. You can argue the differences between boys and girls, but the field is always the same for girls from 8u to college. Go to the baseball boards and you'll still see regular posts about, "How does my son go from -10 to -3 in one season?" You'd see that here too, but the true hitters will still hit.

Discuss. :D
 
Oct 2, 2011
3,024
48
Florida
Absolute crazy rambling, but really curious about these ideas and maybe will spark a good discussion.
Discuss. :D
Honestly,my first thought was is if you want to go play baseball, go play baseball. That is probably an unfair thought because ideas should be discussed with an open mind.

I like fastpitch and the differences in fastpitch. I like the separation and have zero interest in following anything baseball does for the most part and I have zero interest in anything that would move fastpitch towards looking more like baseball.

I am all for finding ways of increasing pitcher numbers - by finding way to develop more pitchers and not looking for some shortcut that would take away form the uniqueness of the game. I like that there is a uniqueness in the pitch and pitching motion. The same goes for 60' bases and smaller fields and the bigger and yellow ball - I don't want to see the bases go to 70'+ - I want to see the real slappers succeed and put pressure on the fielders. I want to see that slow roller make the shortstop throw on the run across her body. I want to see riseballs. And so on.

Bats.. there have been bats at least as hot as the current batch before. They adjusted standards and phased them out and the manufacturers took time to figure out how to technically get around the new standard - they will likely do so again. We are seeing a similar cycle repeat so while we may be approaching a tipping point, we know what the ABC orgs do when that tipping point is reached. It isn't much different than what has happened in baseball anyway - a few years ago they basically removed HR's from college baseball and then it slowly came back again.

Honestly the best idea I saw in recent posts was focusing on having umpires make the strike zone bigger to allow pitchers more room to work with. In college especially they are working with really tightly defined zones for the big ball and the best hitters. They could make this a point of emphasis and see what kind of effect it has.

Just to add - a couple of years ago NSA tried to deaden the ball in fastpitch and it was a disaster. It ended up making the game more dangerous because everyone moved their fielders in closer. With the smaller field - which I am good with - it caused issues.
 
Last edited:
Mar 13, 2010
1,697
38
If you allow pitchers to throw overhand then you might as well kill the sport. Because it will be baseball.
 
Apr 28, 2014
1,098
48
I am not in favor of overhand pitching but there needs to be some form of change if the sport is to thrive in the future.
I never really gave too much thought to the umpires zone until last week. DD was in the Space Coast complex for USSSA elite. She has not played in USSSA tournament in over a year. She is what I would call an above average pitcher. She struck 29 of the first 36 batters she faced.
The umps were giving her inside, outside and with that her rise was getting kids to chase. This was during the first 5 games (team when 5-0).
Now the 6th game comes and the umpire has a zone that lets just say was microscopic. Two of the first 3 batters walked on pitches that all week we dead strikes. Batters began to take everything and no matter where the ball was placed it was "ball, ball, ball".
Our team took the approach of hack away like they did all week and proceeded to pop up and hit weak ground balls against a decent pitcher. The point is that the umpire totally controlled the games all week.. Umpires strike zone seems to be the easiest way to control the game.
 
Mar 13, 2010
1,697
38
That has nothing to do with pitching but poor umpiring.

I play a senior fast pitch league. New club so got graded lower. We were number 1 but had one team we went head to head with all season. The semi they belted me around the park because I couldn’t get corners called.

Grand final was a different story and was able to get my spots called. Their top batters couldn’t hit me.

Umpiring is part of the game.
 
Jan 22, 2011
734
18
The solution is Java, Rick, and Rich getting their Fastpitch Foundations website released ASAP and to do more clinics. That is why I'm going to Portland this weekend, to give Javasource a hard time about not having the website and the bronze/silver/gold pitching coach certification program going!
 
Feb 17, 2015
307
18
USA
"Almost any fully grown girl can hit the ball over a 200ft fence."


Yeah, remember that game in the WCWS where fifteen kids went yard? Me neither.
My thoughts exactly!

And to expand on the OP's thought that the time investment involved in learning to pitch has zero benefit. I disagree with the statement that there is zero benefit. If you learn to pitch you have a much easier road in choosing what teams you get to play on from travel ball all the way through college. Pitchers are in such need that I've seen mediocre pitching get recruited to all levels of college softball ahead of most position players (unless the position player is a true 1%). You look at travel ball posts and almost all are looking for pitching to add to their already talented teams. The problem the OP got right was the time investment and work that is required to be good. I believe that in this electronic device/social media age that we are in it is becoming harder to attract those girls in their younger years to take on that challenge and work for it.
 

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