“Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.”…Albert Einstein
Yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court's upheld the health care law championed by the President that many have dubbed ”ObamaCare”. It’s a controversial law where Democrats are celebrating millions of Americans getting access to insurance while Republicans railed against what they contend is a dangerous expansion of government.
This decision affects how Americans get medicine and health care and also provides new court guidelines on federal power. The ruling prohibits insurers from denying coverage for pre-existing medical conditions and allows parents to keep their children on family policies to the age of 26. The most controversial provision -- an individual mandate requiring people to have health insurance - is valid as a tax, even though it is not allowed under the Constitution's commerce clause. In other words, the federal government does not have the power to order people to buy health insurance, but does have the power to impose a tax on those without health insurance.
Whether you agree or disagree the bottom line can be summarized by Obama's quote "I know the debate over this law has been divisive," It should be pretty clear that I didn't do this because it was good politics. I did it because I believe it is good for the country." He is tryong to help by taking a controversial stance without regard to gaining a political advantage. This is admirable and honorable.
Softball has its own version of "ObamaCare" which I have dubbed "ModCare" and as a self-appointed guardian of 10 Man Modified Softball I am also taking a controversial position for the greater good without regrad to gaining an advantage.
Before I continue I would like to say that I have discussed this issue in this forum for years at nausem and was resigned to not discuss it anymore becuase of all the jockeying, hypocrisy, and manipulation involved until I read the following highly intelligent comment left on one of my blogs regarding pitching
"Teams paying pitchers = Overachieving. Teams without paid pitchers = last place. Paid pitchers mask an otherwise average team.”
That statement really hit home because teams have for quite some time now have engaged in an arms race to acquire top pitching without regards to modified pitching rules. After years of warnings, this can clearly be seen in The Central Park Big Apple League where the floodgates have opened. The league seriously needs some "ModCare" as they rules are as follows:
(1) With respect to the legal pitching motion. Any pitcher who uses a modified fast-pitch motion is approved to pitch in the BASL. The BASL specifically prohibits "slingshot" or "windmill" pitching motions as set forth in the BASL Rules and the ASA Rulebook. The pitcher MUST start with one foot in contact with the pitching rubber. The pitcher MAY take a step back with the lead foot prior to moving forward provided that the rear foot remains in contact with the pitching rubber. The pitch shall be delivered on the throwing arm side of the body and not behind the back or between the legs.
(2) No restriction of the position of the ball on the back swing or on the downward motion + during the complete delivery (ASA rule 6, sect. 3 F1). On the forward swing of the pitching arm, the elbow must be locked at the point of release, + the shoulders + driving hip must be squared to home plate when the ball is released (ASA rule 6, sect. 3 I2, Please note: No mention of breaking the wrist is currently mentioned as their appears to be no restriction on ball position in the hand (big mistake).
Pitchers in this league not following these rules and are on several modified pitching ban lists throughout NYC are as follows
1. Armondo – on my team The Rangers. More on this below
2. John Brown
3. John Miranda
8. James Parker
9. I am missing at least 2-3 others
I specifically mentioned Armondo b/c he is on my team and is not a modified pitcher. He is a classic example of what almost every team in this league is doing which is escalating an arm race by adding dominant pitching without regards to modified pitching rules. He and everyon eon the list mentioned above, may not sling or windmill, but they certainly are not modified as they either:
- Break their wrist in throwing the ball or
- Throw sidearm or
- open their shoulders and/or hips at some point in their motion
Team in this league are are frustrated. For example, perennial championship contender West has stated "We feel we are being punished for using modified pitching" and Revolution ace Chris Lutkin was quoted as "I feel I shouldn't even be pitching in this league anymore". There is a deep problem here. Solid teams without non-modified pitching like Revolution and Gotham have suffered with poor records of, 1-12 & 3-11, respectively. They are no where near that bad. Not even close. Despite the beautiful venue this league enjoys this schism in the pitching will destroy a league as struggling teams will eventually drop out and go elsewhere.
To be fair, the league is supposedly employing a Pitching Ombudsman, who acts as an independent expert to determine the legality or illegality of pitching motions used by any and all league pitchers. but its July already and nothing I mean nothing has been done. In fact, things have gotten worse.
It’s time for “ModCare” don’t let mediocre minds tell you otherwise. Something has to be done for the greater good.