Changes to ASA rules at 10U

At the ASA meeting last Sunday one of the topics covered was a change in the rules for the 10U “A” level. If you haven’t heard, this level will now be playing by the same rules as the older levels. In other words, stealing home, unlimited stealing of bases, and dropped third strike are now legal. (They are not legal at the “B” level.)

I can’t imagine why the ASA would want to make this change. Well, yes I can. My guess is it was driven by the southern California teams. Out in SoCal they can play year-round, and they’re generally ahead of the rest of the country. Maybe they feel the existing 10U rules are too restricting. I can tell you around here in Chicago, though, where the season runs from April to July, it’s going to be a disaster. As one fellow from the Orland Sparks who was sitting next to me said, “A walk is now a run.”

I think we can expect scores that resemble football games more than softball games. Runners will steal second on the first pitch and third on the second pitch, same as usual. They’ll then be able to score on any passed ball or wild pitch.

What this is probably going to do around here is set pitchers back a couple of years. They will be so worried about letting in the runner on third that all mechanics will break down and it will be difficult to focus on learning to pitch the right way.

This is a bad idea. I hope after a year the ASA recognizes the error of its ways and goes back to more 10 year old-friendly rules.

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