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Little League requires face masks on players!!!
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Buzzsaw
Junior High
Junior High


Joined: 23 Jan 2010
Posts: 36
Location: California

PostPosted: Jan 24, 2010    Post subject: Little League requires face masks on players!!! Reply with quote

I'm all for the safety of the players, but when is enough, enough? I guess I am just old school, but is it me? or are there Parents and officials out there just plain going above and beyond? I have played baseball for many years and yes I have been hit by a ball and yes it hurt, but I got up and took first. Today, I look around at the other coaches and keep my ears on and eyes open and I never hear any of the other Coaches teach a hitter how to move away from a ball thrown at them. When I was younger, coaches taught their hitters/players how to turn away from a bad pitch and how to take one for the team, but today, I guess coaches don't have time or worse, just don't even know or remember. I guess seeing players getting hit in the face is not very pretty and I would agree 100%, but the question is....How? Why? It's not the pitchers fault! It's not the batters fault! I feel it runs deeper than that and it runs all the way into the dugout. COACHING!!! So, now I have these officials talking safety this and saftey that and it is driving me nuts, but what can one do when there is already and avalanche? Think about it for a second, will there be no more sliding into base because it is not safe? What about the position that is the most dangerous of all? That's right!! The PITCHER. Will pitchers be forced to throw on the mound with an L screen? C'mon.. Makes no sence to me to have a batter with a mask on when a pitcher is more volnerable with a ball that could come at him twice as fast. Hello!!! Now, the batter is more confident and aggresive. Swings harder now because of the mask, but lacks the vision to see the ball as well as the player use to without the mask and results in more balls being swung at late which, by he way, results in the pitcher being even more of a target... Safety? How about overly protective? I love being a coach and I love Baseball. These Boys want to play baseball. I just don't understand how people think this is an answer.. Mad Any comments my fellow Coaches??? Officials too Very Happy
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jdfromfla
Administrator
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Joined: 20 Jan 2006
Posts: 5658
Location: Green Cove Springs, Fla.

PostPosted: Jan 24, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

Little League is being run by lawyers now. It is on it's very last legs and if ESPN wasn't propping them up Ripken/Babe Ruth and AAU would have already supplanted them. Already they've started to buckle though (I just read last week where they may actually come up with a intermediate field size).
I had this kid back in the 80's, he was this little golden haired tyke..sang in the choir..they said his voice was a thing of beauty (I'm a nicknamer so immediately, he's Elvis). Well he was just about as skittery and weak as any kid I've ever coached. As he was getting his 2 fielding innings and one at bat on a fine Saturday morning against the fastest toughest pitcher in our league, I called him to me and told him not to keep bailing all the way out of the box every time the kid threw, the ump was calling everything a strike because of this..well lil Johnnie (And his name was Johnnie Laughing ) went up there all brave and determined...thumped that plate with his bat and was just not going to give in...next pitch slammed into a point equa-distant between upper lip and nose..this vaulted Lil Johnnie into the most technically perfect gainer ever attempted at home plate. Soon there after Lil Johnnie made a commitment to scouting and hung those cleats by the door. I can see from the shock and horror of his parents and the surrounding parents how this "face-mask" deal came about.
I still for the life of me just can't agree with it though.
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Dino
Hall Of Fame
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Joined: 24 Sep 2006
Posts: 1648
Location: Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Jan 24, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is only one thing mandatory in Little League these days. Williamsport must make money. To that end, all the other mandatory rules have evolved. I gave up on Little League when they accepted a television contract for millions and used "little Johnnie" Cap as an excuse to expand their television empire. Now every mother and father sees their child as a budding superstar. Add to that the "pitch count" rule and I just want to Puke .

Every easy fix is adopted but the one that would make a true difference in the game. Getting back to wood bats. Hmmmm......I smell an aluminum bat company in the woodpile.

I feel better now. Crazy
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Roger
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Joined: 22 Mar 2006
Posts: 6737
Location: Phoenix, AZ

PostPosted: Jan 24, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

It wouldn't surprise me if the insurance companies had a hand in this requirement.
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Zita Carno
Legend
Legend


Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 3737
Location: Tampa, Florida

PostPosted: Jan 25, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even if it's Little League, or should I say especially if it's Little League, they should make it a requirement for the teams to have pitchers' fielding practice. It should include handling comebackers, so that these young pitchers can be equipped to move fast, spear those line drives and fire to the base to make the putouts, and avoid being hit by them (except, of course, in the pocket of the glove). You'd be surprised at how some of those kids at bat can line one right back at the pitcher. This is how things are done at the professional level, especially in the major leagues, and if all teams were to do this on a regular basis it would cut down drastically on injuries sustained by that lethal batted ball. Cool
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Buzzsaw
Junior High
Junior High


Joined: 23 Jan 2010
Posts: 36
Location: California

PostPosted: Jan 26, 2010    Post subject: Smart Pitchers live in the present.....Right? Reply with quote

This year is going to be very interesting to me as a dad and a coach. Laughing
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littlelefty
Minor League
Minor League


Joined: 28 Nov 2009
Posts: 166

PostPosted: Apr 28, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations. This may be the most ridiculous thread I've ever read.

Complaining because Little League (12-and-under kids) requires batters to wear face masks? What's the big deal? Face masks add safety and have zero effect on performance.

Do you also complain that Pony League requires catchers to wear cups? Of course not, because the sole objective of many of you is to find something to knock Little League.

I can say that I've now heard just about everything from the anti-Little League crowd: "Pony League's shorter pitching distances compared to Little League’s longer pitching distances are good"; "Little League not allowing runners to lead off is bad"; "Pony League requiring catchers to wear safety cups is good"; "Little League requiring batters to wear safety face masks is bad".

Can you spell "hypocrisy"?
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Dino
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Joined: 24 Sep 2006
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Location: Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Apr 28, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

littlelefty said,

Quote:
Can you spell "hypocrisy"?


I've managed to miss most of the other posts you've made on this forum until today. Before you start calling someone a hypocrite you ought to first know the defintion of the word and then have a personal experience to draw from regarding that person's acts. The very definition of hypocrisy requires a knowledge of the accused person's acts. You don't know me so you can't know if I am a hypocrite about anything let alone little league.

I am here to tell you that I not only know how to spell hypocrisy, I know what it means. If you want to place a face mask on your son at the plate, go ahead, you should have that freedom. If you want to mandate that my kid wear a face mask then I will have to decide if I want to play little league or go to a program where it is optional. There has always been the option to have your kid wear a face mask. For that matter, you can wrap him (or her) in bubble wrap if you want. I choose not to.

We have become way to complacent when it comes to giving up our freedom of choice. I don't like the escalation in mandates and my acts bear that out, if you knew me. And if you knew me, well you'd know if I like you or not. I don't soft sell anything.

Your turn.
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littlelefty
Minor League
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Joined: 28 Nov 2009
Posts: 166

PostPosted: Apr 28, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dino,

First, I did not say anyone in particular is a hypocrite.

Second, what I said is that it is "hypocrisy" to criticise one league (Little League) for its safety requirements but not another league (Pony League) for its safety requirements.

By the way, you wrote above that “There is only one thing mandatory in Little League these days. Williamsport must make money.” Well, what say you about Pony League’s requirement that all games must use “baseballs bearing the emblem of PONY Baseball” (Rule 8-B). That rule is not there to “make money”, is it? Pony is not making money off the sale of those “PONY” baseballs, is it?
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Dino
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Joined: 24 Sep 2006
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Location: Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Apr 28, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, BUDDY, if you are lookin for a squabble....there's a place we have here called, "Official *Pissing Contest* Thread!" I'd like to invite you over there to continue this diatribe.

In the meantime, I find it quite boring to argue with people who keep changing the subject as a strategy every time you challenge them on something.

There are only five other posters on this thread......which one of us was complaining?

Quote:
Complaining because Little League (12-and-under kids) requires batters to wear face masks? What's the big deal? Face masks add safety and have zero effect on performance.


Nobody except you mentioned "Pony League". JD made a vague reference to little league experimenting with a transitional field size. That's funny, you create the controversy and then start the aguement by name calling.

Quote:
Little League requiring batters to wear safety face masks is bad".
Can you spell "hypocrisy"?


Quote:
First, I did not say anyone in particular is a hypocrite.


You are kidding right?

I doubt PONY League makes the kind of money Little League does on television rights by the way.

I said,

Quote:
“There is only one thing mandatory in Little League these days. Williamsport must make money.”
I stand by that. I've visited Williamsport, I've coached Little League (Ten Years), I played both Little and PONY League and a bunch of other leagues, my dad established Little League in our home town, and I've watched all the mandatory this and mandatory that come down. The one thing that makes you a slave to someone else is taking money from them. Nothing comes free. Little League is now beholden to the aluminum bat companies, the helmet companies, the glove companies, the uniform companies, the television affiliates and ESPN and all their advertisers. I am unabashedly, unashamed to bash Little League because they deserve it. and if you'll meet me over at the Pissing Contest Thread I'll bash you too. Shocked
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Zita Carno
Legend
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Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 3737
Location: Tampa, Florida

PostPosted: May 23, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I got into playing the game as a kid, nobody in New York City even heard of Little League, or Pony League, or Veeblefetzer League for that matter. We learned to play the game by playing the game, as simple as that, and a little later on I hooked up with a very good sandlot---it could have been called semipro if the players had gotten paid---team with a manager with good baseball savvy. We played major league rules all the way, which pleased me greatly---including the 60'6" pitching distance and the 90-foot distance between bases---and I learned even more abouit playing the game as a result. There was none of that b.s. about face masks (except for the catcher, of course), or cups, or saucers for that matter; we learned how to deal with things like line drives hit back to the mound, and so on. And still later on I found myself a pitching coach who was nothing short of incredible; he was an active major-league pitcher who doubled as an extra pitching coach, and what I learned from him was priceless---not to mention giving my team an extra edge or two.
So---forgive me if I look at the whole situation with a jaundiced eye, because we didn't have that sort of thing until much later on, by which time I had acquired the nickname of "The Exterminator." And now, at age 75, my playing days well behind me, I still look at the situation the same way. Cool Rolling Eyes
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jmho
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Joined: 15 Jun 2010
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Jun 15, 2010    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was searching "face guards for little league" when I stumbled upon your forum, and wanted to just interject another perspective. My 10 yr old son is recovering from a blow out fracture to his orbital floor (lower eye socket) from a pitch to the face in a Little League AAA tournament game a week ago. I can't tell as much as my husband (and probably all of you) the difference between pitches, but I am told it was a screwball. It was like a heat-seeking missle, as my son backed away from it, it followed him. He has been taught to turn away on inside pitches and always has done that, but in his previous at bat in this game, he was called out on an inside pitch, one that had quite a bit of movement on it and ended up in the glove closer to the plate than he was expecting. I think he was trying to hang on to this pitch in his vision a bit longer to get a better look because of that, but in any case, he should have turned away sooner. The team we were playing had several more experienced travel players and our boys really hadn't seen pitches move quite that much before - but whatever the excuses...he was hit (along with about 4 other players on our team) and, like has been said in this thread - it's no one's fault.

The ER Dr. said he will need to wear a face guard to prevent re-injury. I wasn't sure he'd even want to play again, with or w/out the guard, but in any case, the guard is a requirement for him for the foreseeable future. He said he does want to continue playing, so I'm researching the different options avbl.

Our daughters played D1 college softball and ASA began requiring face guards in 2005. The ruling affected our younger daughter, who at first had some adjustments to make, but as time went on, it was a non-issue. And altho in college it was not required, the one who had played travelball with it did continue to wear it. During the college softball world series a couple wks ago, we noticed many, if not most, of the girls who came to the plate did so w/ face guards. Imho, it's just a no-brainer. I would have loved it if Little League had that requirement in place a week ago.

So, yes, it should be taught and re-taught at younger levels how to turn from inside pitches. Yes, being hit is part of the game. BUT, as the "game" continues to evolve to faster pitching at younger ages (w/ kids in lessons from age 5), and bats continue to improve in composition for more pop, injuries will happen no matter how much preventative training.

I didn't know Little League was considering a face guard requirement, but if they are, I am happy to hear it. Regardless (no pun Smile, our son will be wearing one. He was very lucky his eye muscle was not entrapped, so no surgery was needed, but he was in a lot of pain, seeing double and vomiting, w/ half of his face distorted for several days. He will miss the entire allstar season and no running for 4 wks, so it's definitely something I wouldn't wish on ANYONE.

With that said, his coach bought him something called a "C-Flap". It looks good, but I was wondering if there was anything out there more like the NOCSAE approved ASA guards, that reach across the helmet as opposed to a protuding flap. If anyone has an opinion on an effective face guard, I would appreciate any input.

Thanks for reading, even though I realize my opinion, as a parent, might be different from most of you (esp since this is a pitching forum), but thanks anyway. Whether or not there's a requirement won't affect us, as our son will wear one, but I do think mandating it would be more good than bad. Just like the seatbelt law, it would take time to adjust, but after that, I think it would be no big deal.
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