Tuesday, June 10, 2014

No Rhyme or Reason for Nuthin #1 ... Boiling Softball Frog

I've been holding off on this blog for a while. You see I wanted to write one last blog about the Big Apple League, but I faced the following two big challenges:

1. Fatherhood - everyday
Fatherhood - Alexandra and Caley - Hottest set of Twin babies

2. Selling out to Comments - Big Apple blogs are not my best blogs, but they are by far my biggest comment generating blogs.  Some people equate blog comments to TV Shows ratings. The higher the number of comments the better the blog. I don't think that way, I don't write for comments I write because I write. I'm not gonna sell out and write a Big Apple Blog just to get people to write comments. This isn't a wack ass corny Network comedy like Three Company where some uncreative writer desperate to hold on to his job and can't think of anything new to write has Jack Tripper flip over the couch every week

just to get a cheap laugh and get people to tune in the following week.

P.S John Ritter was awesome. That show was all him.

Still I do love my readers comments and unless one is disrespectful to my family or someones memory I cared about I will never take it down. Here are an example of some that
  • Made me laugh
#1 "If you want to hold us to the rules and suspend us for acting "thuggish" (I'm not sure what that really means) and in an "unsportsmanlike behavior"...that's fine. But here's my question...isn't illegal pitching also in the rule book? When will the league enforce those rules and hold the teams accountable who have illegal pitching?

Rick you have it right, I am no Saint but I will stand by what I believe in. If I pay for a service, it needs to be delivered. I signed up for a "modified" league. This shit is "open" and anything goes in terms of pitching. I get it and I'll make the adjustment if given the opportunity. It's softball gentlemen...it's not personal. At least I don't believe it to be.

I'm not into the "who has the biggest dick" thing. I would lose. I'm short and Hispanic. Don't be fooled by my last name.

Have a Happy Mother's Day!

- Dio Jackson"

#2 Starring in today's performance...Rosenmiller as Richard Nixon (misunderstood), Bitros as Jimmy Carter (good guy not appreciated), Ricky as young Fidel Castro (planning the coup) Castro, Dio as MLK (fighting for softball rights), John Sheppard as a retired Winston Churchill (don't wanna fight no more).

- Blondie
aka the snake
  • Made me stronger
So when you don't get your way you cry about it. Evidently our managers know your game plan and don't want a whiney spoiled team in our league managed by someone whose ego is out of control. You may think you're respected as a softball player but you're not. Live with the reputation you created. By the way every blog you write ends up being all about you. It's getting old.

Signed Anonymous

  • Made me see people different
"all i know is that Ricky has been running the best fall league around for the past 14 years! Better top to bottom comp than big apple! never a question about the pitching! i haven't played in the last two years but ill tell you one thing not one fight ! zero controversy in the 12-13 years that i did play. so letting rick have a say in how the league is run is a very good idea in my humble opinion!!!!!"

HK 11February 20, 2014 at 4:37 PM

  • Made me Friends and allowed people to know me
He'll be waiting for you the day you move on. He's watching. The love never dies.

peace and blessings
jack s.
  • Made me Learn I am not Alone
I am one of three commissioners in that league (New York Show Business League) and I also a manager/player on a team (Turtle Rock) in that league. The banning of what we call tournament style or non-modified pitching has resulted in a rebirth of our league.

In previous years (until 2009) non-modified pitching had become a big problem for the league. We were losing teams all over the place. Every year we had to dig up new teams. And the result was a league that existed to serve a small number of teams that had access to one of these semi-pro type pitchers. But that was not and never had been the philosophy of the Tuesday league.

The NYSBL exists (like a lot of amateur leagues) to provide the best playing experience for the greatest number of players.... The losers in that scenario were all the many players who show up on their day off or take time from work and want to enjoy a game of softball. They do not want a small number of teams with access to high level pitching to continually have a competitive advantage.......... 

In 2010 we took a vote at a managers meeting and a huge majority of managers voted to strictly enforce the pitching rules of our league Our goal as an athletic organization was never to have the highest level of competition possible. It was to provide a level a playing field for players of all abilities to compete and to provide the best playing experience for the largest number of participants. Why should so many players pay money to play all summer if the rules are twisted to ensure that their teams cannot succeed. The truth is a level playing field is not possible when a few teams have the advantage of non-modified pitchers.

We also got rid of cash prizes which were jacking up the "need" to win and providing an incentive to pay pitchers. That change has helped us to keep our team fees lower. -  Thomas Wagner

So I know Big Apple blogs are important to people so if I'm going to do a Big Apple blog I gotta come correct. That's why I've wanted to let the season play out a little and while observing the league that's when it struck me. This season is more than just an observation, it's an Experiment.

More precisely, it's a Boiling Softball Frog Experiment.

In science the theory is "If you drop a frog in a pot of boiling water, it will of course frantically try to clamber out. but if placed in cold water that is slowly heated, it will not perceive the danger and eventually will be cooked to death."  The story is often used as a metaphor for the inability or unwillingness of people to react to significant changes that occur gradually.

That is exactly what has happened to the Big Apple league. Slingers/non-modified pitchers didn't all show up at once. It was gradual and nothing was done. then the situation got out of control.

First one pitcher came, then another, then another, then a ban list, then a debate, then another non modified pitcher came, then another, and before you know it 6 softball frogs were cooked to death. 

The ensuing fallout from the boiling softball frog experiment was not a conclusion, rather another 
experiment called an A/B league. "A" pitchers can pitch one game and B pitchers another so far the results of the experiment have been as follows:

1. Parity - there no push over teams. Every team has an A pitcher. I don't give a fuck who is ranked what. There is parity now. Anyone can beat anyone.

2. Less Teams Less Opportunities - Certain teams are 20 deep in players. Certain players were phased out of the league. Less is not more.

3. Complaining about other shit - Mostly umpires. That will never end, but the most annoying hypocritical cry baby shit I've heard is people complaining about certain team paying players. I have news for everyone, except for the Rangers, it's obvious that every team either has a paid players on their rosters or guys who are only playing because the team has a sugar daddy footing the bill. This is reality and quite frankly no one's business. Stop gossiping about it, it's like high school.

4. Empty Fields - The Big Apple has subleased the great lawn field to a Co-ed league. Also, all 
hard core Sunday Hecksher players can't help but notice that fields 4 and 5 are empty from 11am until 1/2pm, respectively. Empty softball fields are enough to make a grown softball warrior cry. The morning league is ready for doubleheaders. Adapt or die frog.

5. Love - Sorry but the league still works. I missed a game two weeks ago to take care of my kids and it really hurt.For many players this is the highlight of their week. Enthusiasm and competition is high. A true test. 

Boiling Frog Experiment Conclusion

Time to Adapt

It's time to Split, and I don't mean a doubleheader, I mean leagues. Sorry but this A and B thing is too much talking and too risky for the future of the league. The league should simply merge with the morning league and play at 10am and 1 pm. The A league should play at 1pm and be a money league. Simple as that. A leagues and pitchers are all about money

Don't become become Kermit stew.


  1. What Tommy and Bill Mccue did to the tuesday league is a travesty! if big apple heads in that direction it will lose even more players then it already has!!! Rebirth my ass if you think its fun coming out to play against 70 plus year old pitchers than have at it boys but all the talent will be replaced by unskilled older players and all the competition will be gone. on Tuesday I play with Failte and i tell you it sucks. the only competitive games we play all year are against the firemen and even they are boring because the pitching in the league is soooooooooo .WACK!!! these guys ruined the league so that they can keep playing. There has to be a middle ground somewhere and until its found we'll have the same arguments over and over. No need to sign because im sure you all know who this is because ive said it all before!!!

  2. I know who that is... Big Red.