NWLA Tournament Article #2: In Defense of the NWLA
(This post is being partially ghostwritten. I'll post it under my name because I generally feel this way. I don't represent all of these views but the general message is my stance. Enjoy.)
The NWLA Tournament has been around for 8 years. The NWLA Tournament has been under internal attack for 8 years.
I think that the wiffle world needs to hear this: the NWLA Tournament exists so you can play more wiffleball. Stop trying to play less wiffleball.
For years what I've heard is "there's too many walks", "fast pitch is dumb", "you should be able to play with whoever". Every. Single. Year. I've been on the Committee since 2014 and the amount of hair I've lost over this tournament has been staggering.
I'll stop to say that 90-95% of the player body is fine. It's the REALLY LOUD 5-10% that keep trying to bring this tournament down. If you don't like the style, DON'T PLAY. Simple as that.
This is a fast pitch tournament, and has been since the inception. The 5-3 count exists to keep walks down. If you can't hit the board 3 times in 7 pitches, SLOW DOWN. WILL won last year by hitting the board. It's not difficult.
This is not an "open" tournament. You can't get your dream team together and run train. That's tough. This is the NWLA Tournament, meaning you have to represent the NWLA. National Wiffle LEAGUE Association. The point is not to take pride in your team, it's to represent your league. In the past we've let a lot of leagues in because of convenience. I hope to God we stop doing that.
The requirements aren't hard to follow: Be a league, make a team of people in your league. It's simple. If you can't do that, please play in Fast Plastic or GSWL. I will happily point you in the right direction.
Are there legitimate gripes about the tournament? Sure. Morenci isn't exactly a metropolis. The schedule is grueling. Some of the rules are strange. All of this stems from necessity. If you don't like Morenci then come up with a solution to it. The Tournament wouldn't have survived without Sessions offering to bend over backwards for us. We have the best possible deal with Morenci and a good relationship with the city due to Sessions. He's by far the most important of us, but even he can't argue that Morenci is a metropolis. So if you're unhappy with the location, find us a new one. Do what Sessions did. Come up with a plan.
I'm done listening to complaints. I will however accept solutions. So if you come up to a Committee member this week with a gripe, you better come with a solution. Otherwise, we can't help you. Simple as that.
Hopefully this reaches the ears of the loud 5-10%. Let us know if you have any questions.
Justin Tomkins (and ghostwriters)