Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A New Hope? - tales from a guest writer

No Blog from me today guys ( Thank God).
Rather my friend and softball aficionado Jimmy Bitros has allowed me to post an email he recently wrote and sent to his fellow managers in the Big apple League regarding pitching.

FYI - In his letter Jimmy references an email from contact manager Patti.
I have not asked or been given permission to post Patti's email, but as a background Patti's letter stated that his team will not complain about broken pitching standards anymore and will take up the challenge of competing against it.

The letter below is Jimmy's response and future ideas.

Very well done Jimmy

Enjoy


Letter starts now :

First, let me compliment Pat on his e-mail of May 9, 2008.

I couldn't agree more with him that the audition process, as it now stands, is broken.

If a pitcher passes the audition process and pitches illegally during a game, the team he pitches for must be penalized. That is the only way to eliminate the problem of illegal pitches, a topic I will discuss later in this e-mail.

I also agree with Pat that we want a good competitive league where every team has a chance of winning the championship. Unfortunately, if Vegas was laying odds, the teams with illegal pitchers would have a significantly better chance than the teams that play by the rules. Therefore, not every team has an equal chance of winning the championship.

Pat's email indicates that a superstar legal pitcher may be more difficult to hit than a less effective illegal slingshot/windmill pitcher. That argument just doesn't work.

I see a major difference between a superstar pitcher who pitches legal and an illegal slingshot or windmill pitcher.

Firstly, the superstar designation is a subjective opinion.

The illegal slingshot or windmill pitcher is by definition illegal in a modified softball league. It is not subjective whatsoever.

The fact that an illegal slingshot pitcher that isn't effective at what he does should be allowed to pitch, but that the illegal slingshot pitcher who is proficient at what he does shouldn't be allowed to pitch is wrong.

Both slingshot pitchers are illegal in a modified league no matter how effective they are. Illegal is Illegal.

If any type of pitching is okay, like some macho men would like, (even though most don't hit high quality slingshot pitching) why not make it an anything goes league, including illegal overhand pitches. After all, in a modified league, slingshot or windmill is just as illegal as overhand pitching. Illegal is illegal.

So basically, a discussion of superstar modified pitching is a valid discussion,
but a discussion of illegal slingshot windmill or overhand pitching is not because of the simple fact that it is illegal in a modified league.

If we want to progress to a slingshot dominated anything goes league, we can discuss that next February. But then we are talking about bunting, stealing and as in some leagues, a three man outfield just to even things out.
Also, we have to consider the demise of the Saturday league and the problem the Big Apple League ran into 8 years ago when we eliminated all pitching standards.

That is basically where I stand on the issue. I recommend that we eliminate the audition process and evaluate a pitcher in a game situation by our Big Apple committee (not the umpires).

If a pitcher is pitching illegally, then the team will the illegal pitcher has to immediately remove that pitcher from the mound or forfeit the game.

We must make it clear to everyone that we are a modified league and all legal modified pitches are welcome regardless of how good they are.

If a pitcher is legal and is a superstar because he pitches better than other legal pitchers, so be it.

We should save our criticism for illegal pitchers whether or not they pitch slingshot, windmill or overhead.

Jim Bitros

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