First Playoff Game

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Closing out my 2nd year of umpiring HS ball, I finished my first HS playoff game yesterday.

This was actually my first 3-man game as well. I have been studying 3-man religiously for the past year. (CCA, NFHS, Virtual Umpire Camp CD, and the soon-to-be-published Wendelstedt 3-man manual)

I felt I knew it well enough, but I was still a little nervous until it came time to pre-game. Turns out I knew it better than my partners despite the fact that they had several years of 3-man games under their belts. I asked good questions and we worked out some confusion with one of the rotations.

Interesting side note - this game was played on 100% artificial turf. Permanently painted perfect lines, green turf outfield, brown turf infield with those black rubber pellets. The players constantly overslid because the turf was so soft and resilient. No dust/dirt so the close plays were really easy to see and my shoes stayed shiny for the whole game. Pretty cool.

I was U3. Game went really smoothly.

I felt the 3-man system allowed me to get closer on tag plays. I was able to stick my nose into three bangers and see them much better.

R1, Base hit. I let the ball and R1 take me to 3rd, expecting to get called off by PU on a 1st-to-3rd rotation, but PU missed it so I just kept going and got right on TOP of the play and had no second thoughts about whose call it was.

I NAILED 3 balks, both partners echoed them all, and I was moving the runners before the DC even knew what was happening. I think he stayed in the dugout because it all happened so fast, like a well-oiled machine that the Coach wouldn't dare touch.

Post game was all positive. PU/CC was impressed and told me to expect a call for the next round.

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Posted · Report post

Excellent. Congrats!

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Posted · Report post

Good for you!

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Posted · Report post

Congrats Stephen! As I was reading your R1 scenario, I was thinking "Why is he letting the ball and runner take him to third, that's PU's call" right up until you said PU missed the rotation. I'm not at all surprised that you knew the mechanics better than your partners. Well done, sir!

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Posted · Report post

Sounds like a great experience! Congrats

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Posted · Report post

Good Job! I'm not surprised you knew the mechanics better. Good discipline.

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Posted · Report post

Congrats! Keep up the good work!

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Posted · Report post

I just got a call from our association's co-ordinator that I am a replacement tomorrow for a fellow brother. It's a district and I'm working with two excellent umpires. I'm nervous, excited, elated and anything else you can think of.

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I just got a call from our association's co-ordinator that I am a replacement tomorrow for a fellow brother. It's a district and I'm working with two excellent umpires. I'm nervous, excited, elated and anything else you can think of.

CONGRATS! Go get 'em Jeff! :clap:

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Posted · Report post

Congrats Stephen, that is quite an accomplishment, especially on only your second year of umpiring HS ball. It clearly speaks to the quality of your work and it is good that you have a unit that not only recognizes that quality but also doesn't hold you to an artificial time table like so many areas seem to.

So how did you get your hands on a pre-release of the Wendelstedt 3 umpire manual? :)

Also those artificial turf fields are nice until it gets to 100 degrees, then they become unbearable. Last football season I was hearing regular stories about the field temperatures reaching into the 130s.

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Congratulations Stephen! You are ahead of the curve. I didn't get my first playoff game until my 3rd full varsity year (1989).

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