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Showing most liked content since 05/23/2018 in Posts

  1. 9 points
    To all the brothers here in Umpire-Empire, I wanted to thank you for all of the help over the years, ...YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE!! I wanted to pass along that I was selected to work the MHSAA Semi/Finals this year. What an honor, privilege,.... and what an experience!!! One of the best things about it was that my crew comprised of 2 other partners that I work with regularly during the season, one of them being our own @Jeff C. I had 3 games ... 2 semi finals on Thursday, and one final on Saturday. My rotation was the plate first game out on Thursday ..... 10 innings later .... WOW! We rotated like normal as MHSAA goes 4 man from the Quarterfinals onward. The experience of learning the system quickly and catching on with the rotations was a blast! A special thank you to @Jeff C. also for being a great umpire, a great partner, and a great friend .... it was an honor to work with you sir!! My U-E brothers .......... Thanks again for the years of experience, knowledge, and of course, the comradery of the brotherhood!
  2. 8 points
    I just finished my 2018 season with what I feel was a great way to end it. I was fortunate enough to be selected to work the Tennessee State baseball tournament this year. I also was fortunate to be selected for the Class A championship plate. One team had a Vanderbilt signee, probably top 10 MLB draft selection on the mound, throwing 91-95. The other team also had their #1 going, so I was looking forward to a good game. I was not disappointed. The game featured 23 strikeouts from both teams, went 12 innings and ended 1-0. MTSU stadium was packed, wonderful environment, crowd was loud and rowdy. I had two batters interference calls, one on each side, 2 runners on same base, both left base and were tagged out. It was just a great way to end my year. Folks that don’t umpire don’t understand why we do what we do, but I know you guys will be able to relate. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  3. 5 points
    A friend of mine shut down a pitching coach in a college game recently. He heard some comments from the dugout, looked at the guy and said, "Who ARE you? The message being that he's not the head coach and needs to STFU. It was also a message to the head coach that he needs to take care of it. The coach turned tail and headed to the back of the dugout. YMMV.
  4. 5 points
    I always try to remember to pee before the game starts.
  5. 4 points
    What happened with the riddell I bought from you? Never heard back from you
  6. 4 points
  7. 4 points
    Last summer I had perhaps the worst game I have had in years, ain't that right @Richvee? Since that game, as @Stan W. has mentioned, I take every pitch on its own. Pre-pitch, I make sure my feet are right, my gig line is properly aligned, my eyes are focused on the pitcher, and I adjust my breathing so that I can exhale on the release of the ball. Every pitch I find the pitcher's release point, track the ball the whole way, and allow my brain to process whatever may come before I say or do anything. If I miss a pitch, I don't let it bother me. I go get the next one. I realize that I am an amateur umpire just like the players are amateur athletes. Every one involved in every game will make a mistake now and again. Its part of the human condition. I also have cut back on the number of games I work. No longer am I on the field 10 of 11 days. Its down to maybe 6 out of 11. In fact, today is the first game I am working since May 31. I am really enjoying my games and it makes things so much better.
  8. 4 points
    I think that you have told us 2 really great pieces of information: A. You feel you have lost a step which is great self awareness. B. You still love to call games. Here are my thoughts and to be honest, they aren't strictly for Senior Umpires.......I think they apply to all of us. Get an Evaluation- Not from a buddy and not from your regular partner. If you cant get an official evaluator, then make it an Umpire whose skills you recognize and admire. Tell them you want a serious evaluation. Don't take offense at any recommendations or observations. We all need to know where we fall on the list. Level of Baseball- After your evaluation, determine the level of baseball you feel the most comfortable calling games and enjoy the most. You may find that its time to consider stepping down a peg. You may find that the 60/90 field is too large and be more comfortable at the 54/80 level. You may find that JV and Freshman ball is more enjoyable than Varsity or that Recreation league ball is more enjoyable over Travel leagues. There is a happy medium for all of us. Scheduling- Determine how many games a week is optimal for you to call. Critical to focus is not being overused. You may find your sweet spot is 3-4 games. You may prefer weekdays versus weekends. But being fresh will help greatly in maintaining focus. There was a time when I took any game that was played with a white ball and red stitches. I did too many levels and too many games. Now through the season I prefer to do no more than 3 games a week and none on Sunday. My son plays a DH on Sunday.........I will watch him play over anything. Travel Boundaries- Set your "games accepted" boundaries. Not facing long road trips and getting home at a decent hour helps. Rules and Mechanics Study- Some might find this one odd, but a refresher course on rules and mechanics can instill a confidence level that makes you more cognizant of the applicable rules and current methodologies of Umpiring. Umpiring is not a static avocation. If we aren't continuing to learn, we aren't as effective. Relying on acquired knowledge from decades ago is not enough. Confidence in rulings gives you confidence on the field. I never met an Umpire who wanted to be wrong.....but I've met plenty who don't do enough to prevent it. (Some of the biggest raps on older umpires is not their physical efforts or experience but that they don't use current mechanics, don't like NFHS rules, use their own rule interpretations etc.,) I'd be remiss if I didn't mention these last two. Conditioning- Make sure your body is ready for the season. Preseason conditioning even more important as we age. Stretching before talking the field!. Wear supportive gear. Compression wear and braces help. If your body hurts your focus is less. The days when I could work 8 hours then drive to a game, change on the fly and run straight on the field to chase 16-18 year olds is long gone. Hydration- Summer is here.........Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate.................the first victim of dehydration is focus.........then you. Hope this helps.
  9. 4 points
    Two thoughts: 1) As described, I would have ruled differently if on the Board. 1a) But, the board rules (and rulings) apply. 1b) There's always another side to the story. 2) Get. Over. It. Even if you are right, it's third grade baseball. There's a more important lesson that who wins this pi$$ing match.
  10. 4 points
    Yes, in an American Legion Regional championship game. Team was losing pretty bad after three innings (7-0 as I recall). Head coach came out after the third out of the third inning and said "I need to get ejected to fire up my team. You can eject me now, or I can go into the dugout and put on a show in a few minutes." I said, "we can do it now, but I can't just eject you because you say you want to be ejected. You have to give me something to put in my report." He said, "okay...(pause)...you're a terrible umpire. You're brutal." I said, "that'll do it," and ejected him. He said, "thanks," and then stepped back and put on a show to fire up the crowd (he was the host team) and his team. I had to bite my tongue to not smile or laugh. It didn't work. His team got clocked.
  11. 4 points
    Man...the plate umpire in that video is a freaking stud.
  12. 4 points
    Oh... it is getting a sun visor. All my masks have it. How else can I keep the sun out of my eyes with my hat on backward?
  13. 3 points
  14. 3 points
    Which makes us look like the assholes when we call it during the season.
  15. 3 points
    Judgment calls we can get wrong. Rules ignorance is arrogance. We all don't make "those mistakes."
  16. 3 points
  17. 3 points
    Over the years I have come to accept the FED rule, for the reasons explained above by Mr. Maven. I no longer think it's a FED rule that needs changing. I've seen many varsity umpires have trouble with batter interference rulings, runner placement on overthrows etc. Asking them to learn all the nuances of the OBR/NCAA balk rule would be,dare I say, futile. The vast majority of varsity umpires do not devote time to rules knowledge or even refreshing their own rules knowledge. We, my Umpire-Empire brethren, are the minority.
  18. 3 points
    The OBR balk rule is rather complicated to enforce, with many different conditions and scenarios. FED has far, far more officials and a much wider range of officiating ability than any other rule set, and so among their priorities for rules in all sports is ease of enforcement. The simplified balk rule is a result of that priority in action. The VAST majority of HS players do not go on to play NCAA, much less pro, baseball. The few who do are generally so dedicated to baseball that they have time in their lives and can pick it up as they go.
  19. 3 points
    Oh, and my 8 stitch hat fits in there just fine.
  20. 3 points
    Some more pics. The velcro straps I've been using on my other frames don't work with this one. So I used the rubbery ones from an Easton, as they were thinner. Still working on dialing the whole rig in. Sight line is better with the TW pads, as the frame is a bit closer to my eyes. It's riding a bit high on my jaw, but I can adjust that. Overall, this is my new main mask. It fits my face, has TW science, and looks badass.
  21. 3 points
    That's "just hard-nosed baseball" only if this is 2009. It's an illegal HP collision. Maybe MLB will drop a fine for that and send a message. I for one do not miss those collisions one bit.
  22. 3 points
  23. 3 points
    It's like it was MADE for the belt clip!
  24. 3 points
    I don't care, game's over
  25. 3 points
    That harness reminds me of the Bike jockstrap I wore in Junior high. (No, I didn't wear in on my head)
  26. 3 points
  27. 3 points
    Here’s the problem with this – there is no such thing as a “fielder’s balk”. The only thing that refers to this topic is the “At time of pitch, there shall be eight fielders standing within fair territory...” (I’m paraphrasing). You can read this once, twice, or a thousand times, you will not find a penalty! In fact, the only fielder – non-pitcher – that can be called for a balk is the catcher if he positions himself, at TOP, outside of his box. With that said, it is crucial that umpires like @rzanew get this corrected because this is not a judgement; this is a rule (or absence thereof), and the team has grounds for a Protest... which they will win once the Book is cracked open. Contextually, I can agree with most others here, that it being 12U, it’s not the end of the world, and the best course of action is to get back to the game at hand. However, in professional baseball, if an umpire crew gets this wrong, it’s grounds for termination. It really is – you succeed as an umpire team, you fail as an umpire team. And this happening within a Fed game, @Jimurray, is where I have the greatest issue or gripe with the NFHS Rules – it diefies the PU, creating a stratification between PU and BU. Granted, the vast majority of PUs and BUs have an equalitarian, working relationship, but there have been more than a few who have abused this “empowerment”. I’m all for what Noumpere advises, because we can’t have this kind of ignorance perpetuating. Why even call time? Between pitches, “Hey Third (or First)! Need you to step inside the chalk!... yeah, both feet... good!” It’s that simple. And if a base coach points it out, just remind the fielder of where he needs to be. Again, there isn’t a penalty to assess.
  28. 3 points
    The pitcher I had went #7 in the MLB draft!
  29. 3 points
    Any pitcher (right or left handed) need not step off the rubber to throw to first. I think a coach does a right handed pitcher a disservice to not teach him the proper way of using a jump turn vs stepping off the rubber to throw to first. I will be honest and tell you I am having trouble visualizing how a RH pitcher could throw to first without moving his pivot foot. Did he require an EMT after he did it?
  30. 3 points
    First off it's got a Champro harness and all the cool kids are wearing one.
  31. 3 points
  32. 3 points
    If you don’t have to have the check. Look at amazon and the Rawlings black mask pads. They are almost the same. Just cut off Rawlings patch.
  33. 3 points
    A friend of mine had an extra pair of McDavid Hexpad shorts that were made for rugby players, and he gave them to me so I could incorporate the hexpads into my Force3 tights. The pads on the rugby shorts are placed on the outside of the thighs, so they are not in a good position to absorb a straight on shot. I took them to a seamstress and for $40 they cut the pads out of the shorts and sewed them into the tights. The result is great protection on the inner thigh where the kevlar inserts are positioned, and good protection on the front of the thigh as well. Here is the result:
  34. 3 points
    Brilliant solution, @grayhawk. Just be careful about doing too much, and giving the designers and manufacturers the solution, only to see them incorporate your ideas without giving you any acknowledgement or accreditation... ... like what happened to me and the Schutt XV.
  35. 3 points
    The new(er) assistant commissioner in charge for baseball is far more active in selecting state championship umpires than his predecessors. Which is a good thing...takes politics out of it. Yes, my series had two teams from my area. All four umpires WERE picked by the SCHSL and the SCHSL wanted the same four for the series...that's a fact. As for series played by two teams not from Columbia...but with the third game played in the Columbia area because it's a neutral site (usually equi-distant between the schools)...we are often, but not always selected to work that game. However, in my opinion a lot of that is because of the quality of our umpires, not just our location. We do an incredible amount of training. For example, a guy who first learned how to umpire in our association 20+ years ago is going to Omaha this year. That's a big problem we have...we train guys and then the college associations call us looking for new umpires and we end up losing them. Happens every year. We've been a major pipeline to college associations. Heck, we took a guy who joined us six years ago having worked nothing more than Little League. This year he worked 40 NCAA Division I games, a plate job for an NCAA conference tournament semifinal, and was nominated for his first regional. Of course, I'm not suggesting that we're solely responsible for their successes...they obviously have tremendous GOD given ability and desire to succeed. I'm also not implying that we're the only association with good umpires in South Carolina, but I'm also not apologizing for our association's success, either. I've (and others) put my blood and sweat into this association for the last 12 years. We've produced a ridiculous amount of training opportunities for our members. For every hour I spend umpiring, I spend three doing off-the-field stuff...such as training, writing rules or mechanics quizzes for our website, planning and running our weekend camp, writing our 300+ page umpire manual, etc. When I have a guy come up and say that he never had these resources available to him in his prior association...wherever that may have been...and that he can't ever imagine working any where else again (and this does happen)...we'll, that's the reason I still umpire.
  36. 3 points
    9U? Who cares!? Outs are GOLD, man!!
  37. 3 points
    My new main rig thanks to @jwclubbie. Nike TI with leather Mizuno pads and Honigs 6" throat guard. I need to get a new harness for it and trying to decide if I want to add a visor or not.
  38. 3 points
    BREAKING NEWS: MLB now capable of reading its own rule book. More later as this story develops.
  39. 3 points
    "he may take one step backward, and one step forward with his free foot.
  40. 3 points
    It's to track their daily alcohol intake, so they can be sure they are getting enough.
  41. 3 points
    Pffffffft. Har har. –200 points for even joking about this travesty.
  42. 3 points
    There's still hope, buddy. So Yamaguchi, proprietor of Samarai Gears, sent me an update last week. Here is an excerpt: "I'm recently working really hard to produce Mizuno type throat guard. I found some possible factories who might be able to satisfy our needs. So please wait my next update with optimistic view. There may be a chance.
  43. 3 points
    Acknowledge, warn and eject is for the head coach. All others don't get that much rope.
  44. 2 points
    Find somebody to catch for you and go see some pitches in a cage. Ask a local team if you can work a scrimmage or if you can visit a practice and see pitches during side work or a simulated game. Look up a local pitching coach and ask if you can see some pitches during lessons. Whatever you do, though, SEE SOME PITCHES. It's fantastic for your confidence to see pitches in a low-stress environment. Then go to your next game, relax, trust yourself, and do a great job.
  45. 2 points
    I can't recall if they were sold or not. But I know @jwclubbie had a set of pads and a Nike harness for $160.
  46. 2 points
    The wipe away was actually a "no trip" signal. The pitch was a ball.
  47. 2 points
    Good discussion. I've yet to experience a pitcher throwing a pitch when I've had my hand up. I've had some less experienced ones start to, but I've shut it down.
  48. 2 points
    Reviving this thread after no posts since December. 1: Nike titanium, Black and Tan belgard pads, Adam Hamari inspired 2: diamond with chopped chin guard, tan belgard pads, mizuno shovel 3. Nike titanium with black and gray belgard pads
  49. 2 points
  50. 2 points
    Coach: Where is your zone? Umpire: For you or for them?
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