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bluejersey

Am I crazy?

45 posts in this topic

Where's KenBAZ? Doesn't he do these crazy marathons, in the AZ heat no less, all the time? I thought we'd hear from him by now.

I'm down for a little service work. Had a hernia surgery a couple of weeks ago and had shoulder surgery on Wednesday.
A typical weekend for us here with a youth tournament is six on Saturday and five on Sunday. For a three day event you might go six, five, five.
There has been lots of good advice in this string. First, it you don't have to, don't do it. It's dangerous and you may not be suited to handle the heat. When you have six games scheduled, (I've done as many as eight games in a single day), you are not as good an ump in the first game as you could be. You have to try and save yourself for the grind. I work almost exclusively 2-man so three plates in a row is normal. I usually get locked in by the middle of the first game and struggle with my concentration with that third plate.
You have to acclimate to the heat and the workload. We have problems with guys at this time of year because the temps shoot up and we're not use to it. Also, guys may not be staying hydrated all week. When they show up for an event on Saturday it's too late to start hydrating.
Some guys no matter what, can't do a lot of games when it starts to get hot. The weekend before Mother's Day we had six guys here in Metro Phoenix have to leave games with heat problems. You have to constantly monitor your partner. What kind of shape is he in? Are they hydrated early in the week? Are they acclmated? Are they drinking enough during the games and during the change over? When you start having heat problems your thinking can get a little fuzzy. You need your partner and Site Supervisor to be looking out for you.
Over the past few years I've had two partners carted off to the hospital and probably a half dozen that had to be replaced. As a result, some of the facilities have become concerned with their liability and have begun putting limits on how many games we can work in a day.

I know Jersey can be wicked humid. Hydrate ahead of time, drink mostly water. Use water or an ice towel to cool yourself off. Seek shade when you can. Watch your catchers, you are in this together. Focus on your habits and fundamentals​. When you are grinding through a lot of games good habits are critical. Good luck, please let us know how it goes.

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Given how much excellent advice is contained in this thread, particularly in KenBAZ's post, this might sound kind of silly, but I find high value in it, so here you go:

RELAX between pitches.  Do things like rolling your neck around, flexing and snapping your fingers, clenching your butt, moving your knees, stretching your back, blinking your eyes, and smiling.  Relaxing will decrease your stress, help you focus more clearly in short bursts, and keep you fresher longer.

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Great point by CJK. One of the habits I try and cultivate behind the plate is just what he mentions. Relax, relax, relax, step into the slot and lock in.

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The hardest thing to learn, especially if you are new to an assigner/region/league is how to say no, sorry but no. I have a two-game limit. If an assigner won't honor that, I can stay home and enjoy the time with my SO.

In heat, it helps to get your body temperature down by pouring cold water over your head. I've done that working the plate, but often on long bike rides.

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@KenBAZ I hope you are doing okay and recover quickly!

A bit of a hijack here, but when hydrating properly, the excess has to go somewhere. What do you do when the nearest facility is too far away to make it back in the time you have between innings? 

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I've had partners run to the bathroom between innings and I've done it once or twice. With the dry heat we have here most often we don't have to urinate too frequently. I know there have been days where I've consumed a couple of gallons of water and not urinated all day. Inevitably I'm in for a night of muscle cramps because your electrolytes get out of balance. I eat bananas, sweet potatoes, green leafy vegetables and a superstarch solution to try and preventing and recover from the cramps.

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7 hours ago, KenBAZ said:


I'm down for a little service work. Had a hernia surgery a couple of weeks ago and had shoulder surgery on Wednesday.
A typical weekend for us here with a youth tournament is six on Saturday and five on Sunday. For a three day event you might go six, five, five.
There has been lots of good advice in this string. First, it you don't have to, don't do it. It's dangerous and you may not be suited to handle the heat. When you have six games scheduled, (I've done as many as eight games in a single day), you are not as good an ump in the first game as you could be. You have to try and save yourself for the grind. I work almost exclusively 2-man so three plates in a row is normal. I usually get locked in by the middle of the first game and struggle with my concentration with that third plate.
You have to acclimate to the heat and the workload. We have problems with guys at this time of year because the temps shoot up and we're not use to it. Also, guys may not be staying hydrated all week. When they show up for an event on Saturday it's too late to start hydrating.
Some guys no matter what, can't do a lot of games when it starts to get hot. The weekend before Mother's Day we had six guys here in Metro Phoenix have to leave games with heat problems. You have to constantly monitor your partner. What kind of shape is he in? Are they hydrated early in the week? Are they acclmated? Are they drinking enough during the games and during the change over? When you start having heat problems your thinking can get a little fuzzy. You need your partner and Site Supervisor to be looking out for you.
Over the past few years I've had two partners carted off to the hospital and probably a half dozen that had to be replaced. As a result, some of the facilities have become concerned with their liability and have begun putting limits on how many games we can work in a day.

I know Jersey can be wicked humid. Hydrate ahead of time, drink mostly water. Use water or an ice towel to cool yourself off. Seek shade when you can. Watch your catchers, you are in this together. Focus on your habits and fundamentals. When you are grinding through a lot of games good habits are critical. Good luck, please let us know how it goes.

Sent from my SM-G935T using Tapatalk
 

Thanks for the great advice!

I learned the ice towel trick a few years ago while doing adult baseball doubleheaders on Sunday mornings in the middle of July. It's saved me countless times since then.

I'm planning on eating a good breakfast, bringing a cooler and some Cliff Bars, and taking my pads off for a piss break between games. Luckily the temps are supposed to drop to the 60's after the record-breaking heat we've had this week so that will help. Also, I can wear light colored shirts. For HS games in NJ, we're confined to either Navy or Black so I've been dying these past few days with the dark shirts in the 90-degree weather.

I'll let you guys know how it goes. I think the worst of it will be when I wake up at 5:30 Monday morning to get ready for work! I love baseball though, as I'm sure we all do, and I'm looking forward to some fun games this weekend. Strikes and outs!

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Wear a "Cooling Vest". Best investment I've made after all these years!

 :-)

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On 5/19/2017 at 7:42 PM, bluejersey said:

Thanks for the great advice!

I learned the ice towel trick a few years ago while doing adult baseball doubleheaders on Sunday mornings in the middle of July. It's saved me countless times since then.

I'm planning on eating a good breakfast, bringing a cooler and some Cliff Bars, and taking my pads off for a piss break between games. Luckily the temps are supposed to drop to the 60's after the record-breaking heat we've had this week so that will help. Also, I can wear light colored shirts. For HS games in NJ, we're confined to either Navy or Black so I've been dying these past few days with the dark shirts in the 90-degree weather.

I'll let you guys know how it goes. I think the worst of it will be when I wake up at 5:30 Monday morning to get ready for work! I love baseball though, as I'm sure we all do, and I'm looking forward to some fun games this weekend. Strikes and outs!

Yeah you got REAL lucky that the heat went away rapidly here in the mid Atlantic lol. Perfect weather this weekend to be able to handle multiple games. Hope all works out well for you.

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So I survived! The games actually went very smoothly for the most part. I was pretty tired Saturday night, but I got a good night's sleep and my games on Sunday were all quick and easy. I was not as tired this morning as I thought I would be. The key was to stay hydrated and keep myself moving. I made sure to do little body movement exercises whenever possible and stayed calm throughout both days.

The only issue I had in any of the games was with one of the coaches who argued a call with my BU. The BU was a 13 year old kid who was part of the cadet training class I ran back in February. Runners on 1st and 2nd, ground ball to F6, F3 drops the ball and picks it back up just before BR touches 1st. BU calls him out and the OHC begins to yell that BU was out of position and needed to get my help. He complained the BU should have run all the way to 1B(from the C) to make the call. I went out there and told the coach not to tell him how to do his job and to take a step back and realize he was yelling at a 13 year old kid. OHC tells me he just wants to help him and that I needed to overrule his call(which I happened to agree with anyway). I told him that I would not overrule BU's judgment as it wasn't an issue of me having a better angle or something of the sort and any further argument would result in him being ejected. That shut him up.

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Glad it all went well, now that you've done this once don't decide you want to do it all the time. Good point you make. Getting through the first days games can be tough. Coming back the 2nd or 3rd day when you're starting out tired and possibly dehydrated already can be worse. How was your focus behind the plate for the four games?

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2 hours ago, bluejersey said:

So I survived! The games actually went very smoothly for the most part. I was pretty tired Saturday night, but I got a good night's sleep and my games on Sunday were all quick and easy. I was not as tired this morning as I thought I would be. The key was to stay hydrated and keep myself moving. I made sure to do little body movement exercises whenever possible and stayed calm throughout both days.

The only issue I had in any of the games was with one of the coaches who argued a call with my BU. The BU was a 13 year old kid who was part of the cadet training class I ran back in February. Runners on 1st and 2nd, ground ball to F6, F3 drops the ball and picks it back up just before BR touches 1st. BU calls him out and the OHC begins to yell that BU was out of position and needed to get my help. He complained the BU should have run all the way to 1B(from the C) to make the call. I went out there and told the coach not to tell him how to do his job and to take a step back and realize he was yelling at a 13 year old kid. OHC tells me he just wants to help him and that I needed to overrule his call(which I happened to agree with anyway). I told him that I would not overrule BU's judgment as it wasn't an issue of me having a better angle or something of the sort and any further argument would result in him being ejected. That shut him up.

Well, the good news is that you lived to tell the tale. The bad news is that my Magic 8 Ball isn't worth a $%!*.

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10 hours ago, KenBAZ said:

Glad it all went well, now that you've done this once don't decide you want to do it all the time. Good point you make. Getting through the first days games can be tough. Coming back the 2nd or 3rd day when you're starting out tired and possibly dehydrated already can be worse. How was your focus behind the plate for the four games?

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My focus was fine. I took it one batter at a time drank plenty of water between innings. It also helped that my last game was a 9u game where anything remotely close is a strike.

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C'mon 8 games in total?? I can do that and have done that in 1 day. i once did 9 in a day for 2 days of games in 1 day cause of weather.  1 games every two hrs. I am not sure of your age but I do 4-5 plate games every sat and sunday, so like 8-10 plate games in 2 days plus 2 games thursday night and 2 games friday night, making it 13-15 games in 4 days. this is a HUGE baseball weekend for tournaments. then I get 1 day off then head North for the Summer to NY to CDP.

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19 minutes ago, Matt Hoey said:

C'mon 8 games in total?? I can do that and have done that in 1 day. i once did 9 in a day for 2 days of games in 1 day cause of weather.  1 games every two hrs. I am not sure of your age but I do 4-5 plate games every sat and sunday, so like 8-10 plate games in 2 days plus 2 games thursday night and 2 games friday night, making it 13-15 games in 4 days. this is a HUGE baseball weekend for tournaments. then I get 1 day off then head North for the Summer to NY to CDP.

That's not crazy!  That's CERTIFIABLE!!!! 

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C'mon 8 games in total?? I can do that and have done that in 1 day. i once did 9 in a day for 2 days of games in 1 day cause of weather.  1 games every two hrs. I am not sure of your age but I do 4-5 plate games every sat and sunday, so like 8-10 plate games in 2 days plus 2 games thursday night and 2 games friday night, making it 13-15 games in 4 days. this is a HUGE baseball weekend for tournaments. then I get 1 day off then head North for the Summer to NY to CDP.

Matt:

Most likely you didn't jump to doing eight games in a day. You got acclmated to it, found out what you needed to do to handle three or four, extend it to five or six and moved up. I'm equally confident you work with guys that can't/won't do more then a couple of plates a day. I know I am a better umpire for one Varsity game then for the 6th game of the day Saturday of a UTrip tournament. We should be careful when we talk about doing this many games. It can be done by most umpires, under most circumstances, but it is not always safe or advisable to do so. I'm happy to hear that the OP handled it well and picked up the importance of taking it a pitch at a time and letting his training and good habits help get him through it.

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14 hours ago, Matt Hoey said:

C'mon 8 games in total?? I can do that and have done that in 1 day. i once did 9 in a day for 2 days of games in 1 day cause of weather.  1 games every two hrs. I am not sure of your age but I do 4-5 plate games every sat and sunday, so like 8-10 plate games in 2 days plus 2 games thursday night and 2 games friday night, making it 13-15 games in 4 days. this is a HUGE baseball weekend for tournaments. then I get 1 day off then head North for the Summer to NY to CDP.

9*2=18. If you started at 7:00AM you finished at 1:00AM. No breaks?

I think I must call BS on this.

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4 minutes ago, Kevin_K said:

9*2=18. If you started at 7:00AM you finished at 1:00AM. No breaks?

I think I must call BS on this.

Maybe no new inning after 10 minutes? The run rule was one after one?

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15 hours ago, Matt Hoey said:

C'mon 8 games in total?? I can do that and have done that in 1 day. i once did 9 in a day for 2 days of games in 1 day cause of weather.  1 games every two hrs. I am not sure of your age but I do 4-5 plate games every sat and sunday, so like 8-10 plate games in 2 days plus 2 games thursday night and 2 games friday night, making it 13-15 games in 4 days. this is a HUGE baseball weekend for tournaments. then I get 1 day off then head North for the Summer to NY to CDP.

Alright, *I'm* your huckleberry......

8 games in one day?  Why, that's nothin!  I've done 16 games in one day, umpiring the bases on one field while simultaneously working the plate on the field next to it!  And then, without even changing shirts, I jumped into my time machine, went back to the start of the day, and umpired them ALL OVER AGAIN - from the opposite position as the first time!

Your move, @Matt Hoey.

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