2005 NSA Major World Series

AM Las Vegas/Benfield/Reece/Belcher/Shade Rest./Easton wins the 20th NSA Major Worlds. This is the last NSA Major that will be played. The NSA has decided to not play the program next year. The “Gamblers” went 4-0 on route to the Championship. This is how the championship game went; Resmondo/Dan Smith/Menosse jumped out to a 19 run lead going to the bottom of the 4th, needing one run to force the “if” game. The “Sod Boys” had runners on 1st & 3rd with nobody out. Hall hit a ground ball to the shortstop, getting them the force out. Runners are on 1st & 3rd with one out Bumgardner came to bat needing to hit a deep fly ball, a base hit or hit it out. The results were a double play, inning over. The “Gamblers” came to bat in the top of the 5th and proceeded to erupt for 14 runs to pull within four, 24-20. Resmondo came to bat in the bottom of the 7th. trailing by 3 with no homeruns left scoring 3 to tie the game. Resmondo had a chance to win it again with the bases loaded. Don Dedonatis came to bat, but failed to push the winning run across and the game went to the top of the 8th. The “Vegas Boys” got two runners on with 2 outs, game tied and MVP of the tournament Dennis Rulli hit a homerun to put the “Gamblers” up by 3. The “Sod Boys” came to bat the bottom of the 8th; Hall hit it out of the park for the 1st out, and Bumgardner flew out to right center for the 2nd out. Wallace then doubled, Krause got a hit with runners on 1st & 3rd with 2 outs and Baker flew out to end the game.
This was not the best game ever played, but it sure was one of the most exciting ones right down to the end. The “Vegas Boys” don’t ever quit no matter how many runs they’re down. I have said that this is a very talented team, who has competed with the two big teams all season long beating Bell Corp a few times and finally getting the best of Resmondo/Dan Smith/Menosse at the right time. Dennis Rulli was the tournament’s MVP and rightfully so, but I can tell you this was a total team effort. The “Gamblers” now have won the NSA AA, the NSA Major which is the first time any team has won both in the same season. The “Gamblers” also finished runner-up at the USSSA Class A last weekend losing to Team Stucco by one run. I know this for sure, the team sponsors, coaches, players and Easton should be very proud of what this team has accomplished. Great job and congratulations on your successful run and good luck at Mickey Mouse World in a few weeks. I can tell you that you will be the #1 ranked team in the world going into the USSSA Super Worlds and you deserve it. Runner-up in this one was Resmondo/Dan Smith/Menosse who just did not get it done. I said in the start of the season that this maybe the best team ever, and I believed this bunch could accomplish that. I am here to tell you that I was way out of line even saying they may be. I admit I was wrong, and to my critics I say people do get it wrong, and I did. I still think that this is a very strong softball team. I don’t believe that this team ever came together to be the very best for whatever reasons. The ball club has not played good throughout most of the season. They have played awful the last few tournaments losing to Northwest Pipe, then this weekend they lost to Team Combat and Las Vegas/Benfield. This bunch also lost the two biggest NIT’s of the season, the Dudley and the Smoky. I can tell you some of the best minds in softball thought that this team would dominate, but they went the other direction for whatever reason. This team has some of the best players who have ever played the game. Remember this, “talent doesn’t always get it done, and if the chemistry isn’t right and everybody isn’t on the same page then it becomes very difficult to win. I honestly believe this team just did not come together and they are paying the price. I think when Travis and Dan got together and selected the players, managers and coaches that they made the right choices, but for some reason it just hasn’t worked. There is one more World left the grand daddy of them all, the USSSA Super. I am not sure that if this team wins this one it will justify the total season. I guarantee you that this one will be very interesting. Remember this one is an unlimited homerun tournament, and we will see what happens. Third place went to Team Combat/Kleuvers/Snap On, who has been struggling most of the season. This bunch got it going against Resmondo Friday night and run-ruled them. I would think this is definitely the highlight of the season so far for this team. I believe this is a much better team than they have showed. Good luck at Disney! Fourth place went to Bell Corp/Taylor Bros/Backman/Easton. This team has also been struggling for a few tournaments. This bunch has played pretty even against Resmondo most of the season.. Remember they won the Dudley and the Smoky, the two biggest tournaments of the season. I believe if they win the USSSA Worlds they would be the #1 team for 2005, we will see. This team will have to play a whole lot better if they want to win at Mickey Mouse World. This ball club has lost to some much lesser teams this season for whatever reason. Good luck in the big one.

I finally got to Michigan City and Patriot Park. I can tell you it sure is one fine complex. I know this that playing on 330′ fields and 80′ bases, using a .44 – 525 is absolutely perfect. This is how big time softball should be played. I also believe using the 16 homerun rule is perfect for these conditions. This was a small field of teams, but a very exciting tournament.

I would like to write a little about the job that Jim Kimmel has done for the NSA in “Bigtime Softball”. Jim has dedicated his time and efforts to keep the upper division going. Jim came to Daytona Beach a few years back to see an experimental tournament that I ran. I used 90′ bases and 80′ bases on a big baseball field. After Jim seeing and talking to the players he took the idea and put it into the NSA Major that year. Jim has kept it this way right up to the last Major NSA tournament. There now will be no more. I believe that 80′ bases is where the game belongs, giving the lesser teams a chance to compete on the baseball fields. The way the equipment is today we need to back up the infielders and the pitchers, that’s for sure. Jim I give you a lot of credit trying to keep this type of game going, and believe me I think you did the right thing, playing on bigger fields and using 80′ bases. Thanks for all the memories from the NSA Majors and good luck in whatever you do in the future.

I know this for sure, that with the equipment today and the balls flying at over 100 miles per hour on 300′ fields some of the rules don’t make any sense. Infielders can only take one step one way and one step the other and hopefully they can make a play, and then when balls are hit off the chest of an infielder and he picks it up, but can’t make a play on 70′ bases there is something wrong. The restricted homerun tournaments on 300′ fields are not the way the game should be played today. The game is very lucky that a pitcher has not been killed in restricted homerun tournaments on 300′ fields. I know that playing on the bigger fields, using 80′ bases and letting the pitcher pitch 3′ back there has been a whole lot less injuries playing in these conditions. Playing on 300′ fields, 50′ pitching mound and 70′ bases is not the answer in today’s game. The game is much better when infielders can turn double plays, and runners can not get automatic doubles, balls that are hit in the gaps are not always triples or inside the park homeruns. I have wrote what I believe and how this game should be played. I will tell my critics who don’t agree with me that is fine, but I will not take any bashing from anyone on the board. I don’t mind anyone’s opinions, but I promise I will ban anyone who bashes me or anybody else. Opinions are one thing, but bashing will not be tolerated anymore on this board.