2002 NSA Major Super World Series

AA Team Mid South/Mizuno Wins the NSA World Championship. I am going to take a last shot at what I think makes the game of big time softball the most competitive game and trying to taking it to the next level. First we must try to bring the Class AA or A whatever you want to call them, to a level where they can become competitive with the three Super Teams. I would like to see and I am sure other people would like to see the A or AA teams win once in a while. This weekend that’s exactly what happened when Mid South/Mizuno became the first team to win a Men’s World Major Championship since 1995 when Hauge won the USSSA World’s in Daytona Beach, Florida. This game has changed since then the equipment is a lot better since 1995. The players are stronger, bigger and more athletic. The game is played on big baseball fields and is a lot different than when teams like Rich’s, Steeles, Bellcorp and all the other very good teams played. What makes the difference is the 90 ft bases, it’s that simple. The chance of it is very slim using 90 ft. bases, with runners on and a ground ball hit to the infield is usually an automatic double play. What happens then is it takes the big inning for the big teams and allows the A and AA teams to stay competitive. The USSSA using 70 ft. bases at Disney won’t let the A or AA teams have a chance to win in today’s game. The ASA has gone to 80 ft. bases and this will help give them a chance. The ISA had 80 ft. bases but used too hot a ball and gave no chance for an A or AA team to win. The NSA this weekend used a .47 core ball 525 compression and believe me if you missed it I guarantee you it wasn’t going out. It was a perfect ball, the ball was a trump and in my opinion the ball that should of be used on these baseball fields to level the playing field. It’s that simple. I believe if other associations would use this ball what happened this weekend when the Mizuno boys won could happen to anyone of ten other A or AA teams. The Mizuno boys played great defense and hit some timely homeruns winning a championship that certainly is good for the game. I have said level the playing field and this game will be bigger and better than it has ever been. When was the last time you’ve seen a Class A team or AA team whatever you want to call them, beat two Super Teams in a world tournament and win. My friends that is one hell of a feat in this day and time. That proves to me that if the right ball is used using 90 foot bases we will level the field even more. Mid South was lead by MVP Rod Cook and I’m here to tell you that this was a total team effort. The addition of John Glidewell was a big factor, this man can flat out play the game and can play with any of the three Super Teams. Midsouth has been a very competitive team this season and has played some exciting softball. When they picked up Ray Cowart, Chaun Demars and Ronnie James they became a contender to win and now it has happened. Congratulations to all the team and the sponsors for a great achievement. Well done Don and the gang. Haugue/ Resmondo/Walser/ Worth who has finished in second place in five out of the last six World Tournaments that they have played in, that is unbelievable. I said that this team would have a chance to win one and I still believe they might. Remember this Super Team is the only team who does not get financial help from the bat manufacturer. Long Haul and Backman get help. Travis and Jeff and their other sponsors pay the whole bill for everything. They deserve a World Champion. I wish them well. Third place went to Dan Smith/Menossee Easton who has played extremely well the whole season. The boys just went flat and couldn’t get it going this weekend. Their new bats were not a factor. I believe the difference in this past weekend was the ball being used didn’t come off like the .44 core used last week in the ISA World. The Trump that we used in the WSL I believe would have made this NSA tournament a home run derby. Believe me the right ball was used. Fourth place, went to Red’s/ J&J/Fairweather/Worth out of Seattle Washington who had a very good team put together for this one. They picked up Jerold Smith and he killed it all weekend. This team had some players who we don’t get to see much but can play the game. Calvin Macery, Billy Hudson, Billy had an unbelievable game against Long Haul. Billy hit two three run homeruns and a grand slam and also chipped in with a double, what a game. Big Shane McCoulough also played very good for Red’s and hit the hell out the ball. This would be a good softball team if this bunch was to stay together all season. I would like to say thank you very much to the Minnesota teams that being the Jazz, Kevitt and O&S Cattle who entered this tournament on a very short notice and all three teams gave a great effort. Thank you very much. Another nice job by Jim Kimmel in running a great tournament. The umpires were a first class outfit and are extremely good at what they do on the field. Eddie Cantrell you should be very proud on how you organize your umpires. I would like to say if the softball people would realize how much John Daniels has given to the game in trying to take this to the next level. You would be saying thank you to him. This man has dedicated his time and money to make our game a game people can be proud to be a part of. I was in Minnesota for 26 days working along side John trying to promote and get people out to this year’s NSA World Series. I went to the newspaper media, TV, and radio to promote this tournament. I spent two whole days at the PGA USA Open Golf Tournament handing out flyers hoping to attract people to this event. I know it has been difficult to draw fans out to the World Tournaments. The last time we had big crowds at a World Series was the USSSA in Daytona Beach, Florida. Since then none of the World’s has drawn very many fans. Look at Disney it is the class of fields for
Softball World Tournament, but no fans. This year the ISA had some good crowds at their tournaments. This week the NSA had some good crowds but not what should have been at this great event. I think what the problem is we need the money put into the game by sponsors, manufacturers should be used for promotions for the World Tournaments, and promoting the players and the product of the manufacturers and not promoting the associations. Let the associations promote themselves they make plenty of money from Class E, D, C and B teams all season long in their NIT’s and in their World Tournaments. I say it’s time to promote big time softball, the game, the players, and the product they use and take this game to the next level. Think about it, the game is bigger than the people who want to control it. It deserves better the sponsors, players, and manufacturers. Big time softball should have it’s own associations with it’s own rules not five associations and everyone using different rules. It doesn’t make sense. The game should be supported by the sponsors, the bat manufacturer’s, the ball manufactures, and outside interests period. Look at what the USSSA gave up the AA and that was the right thing to do. But the ISA, NSA, ASA kept it going. It doesn’t make sense the same teams who play at the NSA, ISA, ASA AA World’s will be the same teams that will play in the NSA, ISA and ASA World’s. Why make teams spend more money to play both tournaments? Just have one sponsors can’t afford to come to both. Like I said stop fighting they can’t afford it. Just like all the NIT’s they can’t afford that either. I have said cut the NIT’s to five each, five for the USSSA, 5 for the NSA and 5 for the ASA that’s it! Put them in the right areas so teams can drive or maybe cut down on air travel. This can be done very easily. All we need is to have a meeting with all the sponsors and let them have a say, let them have a voice, as well as the players having a say in the game. We don’t need to have one person calling the shots anymore. Remember the show is put on by the sponsors, the players and the manufacturers not the associations. Just my opinion.