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lawump

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lawump last won the day on February 21

lawump had the most liked content!

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About lawump

  • Birthday July 15

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    South Carolina
  • Interests
    umpiring and lawyering

More information about you

  • Your Association Name
    Carolina Baseball Umpires Association; NCAA
  • Occupation
    Attorney
  • Types/Levels of Baseball called
    ex-MiLB umpire; NCAA Div. 1; Am. Legion (2015 & 2017 World Series)
  • How did you hear about Umpire-Empire?
    ABUA (umpire.org)

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  1. Biggest blowout ever?

    Here's mine (I was on the dish): #7 South Carolina 38, Charleston Southern 0 (Feb 14, 2004 at Columbia, S.C.) ------------------------------------------------------------ Charleston Southern. 00 0 000 000 - 0 4 4 (0-2) South Carolina...... 7(14)2 203 73X - 38 35 2 (2-0) ------------------------------------------------------------ Pitchers: Charleston Southern - Holmen; Fasulo(2); Perkins(2); Trenor(5); Thrower(7). South Carolina - Fletcher; Luczak(6); Cruse(7); Gregory(8); Donald(9). Win-Fletcher(1-0) Loss-Holmen(0-1) T-3:06 A-216 HR SC - Pearce 2, Melillo 2, Winn, Parks, Campbell, Mi ID-237352
  2. Game Management - Ejections

    This is true at any level of baseball. One of my former minor league partners got a cup of tea in MLB. We talked on the phone after one of his games which I had watched on TV. Joe Brinkman (whom I love (I went to his school and he put me in pro ball) so I'm not throwing him under the bus too big here), kicked a call at the plate. When speaking about Joe's missed call, my former partner said, "no one said a word. If I had made that call I would have had to eject the runner, the third base coach and the manager!" And that's the difference between a rookie MLB umpire and a 30-year vet! When the coaches realize that you're going to be there for a while and that (most nights) you know what you're doing, they tend to give you the benefit of the doubt.
  3. Greetings from MI

    Boom!
  4. Getting the Best Strike Zone

    The MAJOR factors that are going to be taken into consideration on any one umpire's zone are factors that umpires may not even consciously think about, but they are THE factors that affect one's zone more than any other factor and they are all grounded in mechanics: proper footwork, proper head height, properly setting up in the slot and proper timing. By way of example, if you are not properly setting up in the slot (say for instance, you set up directly behind the point of the plate), you are going to have a totally different view of the strike zone than most umpires. As a result, this will be a "factor that can will affect the zone". Furthermore, if you have bad timing, this will affect your zone. Simply put, none of the game participants will "know your zone" because your zone will be all over the place. Advance concepts and theories of calling balls and strikes are fun to discuss and argue (and GOD knows, some of them have been debated to great lengths on this and other websites). However, how often in a typical game do they occur? Once? Twice? Three times? These mechanics, however, are THE factor that affects your strike zone every pitch, of every game, of every season. [Now as for the advanced mechanics, here is my list (this is high school varsity and above): (1) Don't call a pitch that is not caught by the catcher a "strike" unless it is right down the pipe. (2) If the catcher sets up OFF the outside corner and the pitcher throws a pitch (usually a fastball) that pops the mitt (catcher doesn't move the glove), you must "ball" it. Everyone in the ballpark saw the catcher set up outside; plus the defense in this situation is usually trying to pitch a "ball" to get the batter to chase it. Call this pitch a strike and you will lose credibility fast. (3) If the catcher receives a pitch and then jerks his glove back toward the plate or toward the center of the plate, then "ball" it. If you strike it, you will quickly get the reputation that you can be "fooled" by a catcher (even if that is not the case). If the defense complains about your "ball" calls, respond with a, "if that was a strike, then why did your catcher have to jerk his glove six inches?" This is one of the very few times when it is okay to throw a catcher under the bus (something we normally don't do). After all, he is throwing you under the bus by jerking his glove. (4) If the catcher sets up on a corner, and he has to either (a) reach across his body to catch the pitch, or (b) move his entire body across the plate to catch the pitch..."ball" the pitch unless it is 100% over the white of the plate. (In other words, if any part of the baseball is over the dirt..."ball" the pitch.) The pitcher missed his spot big time; no one wants a pitcher to be rewarded in such a situation. Trust me, in this situation the pitch looked like a ball to both dugouts (who can't see the corners of the plate). (5) In "big boy ball" it is not "where the ball crossed the plate". How a catcher receives the pitch matters. If the pitch lands in the dirt, or if the catcher's glove hits the ground after receiving the pitch, "ball" the pitch. NOBODY wants that pitch called a strike. (6) If the catcher's glove goes straight up (his arm extends mostly vertically) to receive the pitch...this is a pretty darn good indicator that the pitch was high. A catcher who wants a strike at the top of the zone, can extend his arm out horizontally in front of him so that his glove is set at the top of the zone to receive the pitch. If he has to snap up past his ear, that's a real good indication the pitcher missed his spot big time. (7) If a batter who has a count that includes three balls, starts running to first base as the pitch is crossing the home plate area or before you rule on the pitch...the pitch is a "strike" unless it was just a brutal pitch that was no where near the zone. If you call "ball" after a batter had started running to first base before you ruled on the pitch, you will get the reputation that a batter can fool you.]
  5. High School Hybrid Stance

    I have called four hybrid illegal pitches so far this high school season. (We're just past the halfway mark of the regular season in SC.) They all involved pitchers who worked from the windup (with no runners on base) with their free foot well in front of the pitcher's plate. Seeing if the free foot is on or even with the front edge of the pitcher's plate can be very hard to see in a 2-man crew with no runners on base. [It is pretty easy to see when the base umpire is standing in the proper "C" position, however.] I tell all of my umpires to give the benefit of the doubt to the pitcher with no runners on base, but to absolutely call it when it is painfully obvious. I have not had an argument, yet. On two of them, the coaches asked me to explain the rule to them. After I did so, they didn't argue at all; they just turned around and told their pitcher what to fix. In explaining the rule, I even told them that this was a point of emphasis this year. On the other two, after making the call, the head coach immediately yelled at his pitcher (to paraphrase), "I've been telling you that all season!"
  6. HBP

    I agree entirely with your rationale. The argument taking place is that because it is strike three, that bounced first, it is an uncaught third strike and batter gets first base. I'm not saying that I agree with their argument; I'm just telling you the argument that is being sent my way. I'm looking for an official cite to refute it. I tried to remain neutral in my original post since others in the argument read these boards.
  7. HBP

    Play: 0-2 count on batter. Pitch is thrown 59-feet. Regardless, batter swings and completely misses. The pitch, after bouncing in the dirt, then strikes the batter in the shin. What is the ruling in FED? I would appreciate any cite you can provide. i can think of two possible answers: (a) strike three, ball is dead, batter is out; (b) strike three, ball is dead, batter awarded first base due to uncaught third strike. Other runners return to TOP base unless forced to advance by batter. I am wondering if there has ever been an official FED discussion of this play. If not, has any other source discussed it? I know some of you have Casebooks going back decades. Thanks!
  8. I'm late to the dance here (I've actually been out on the field...LOL). But I agree with the comments above.
  9. Strike Call

    http://umpire-empire.com/topic/2206-working-the-scissors-stance/
  10. Strike Call

    When I was working the heel/toe (which is now heel/instep...a/k/a "the box") my knees killed me after every game from the torque that is applied to them if you do the box stance the way they (MiLB) wanted you to do. (And I was doing it correctly...I had a "4.5" rating on my plate work on my last MiLB evaulation.) So, when I left MiLB, I decided to try the scissors using what Mr. Nelson had taught me one day in spring training. If one is doing the scissors correctly, the "stress" is all on the hamstrings, buttocks and quads. At the beginning of each season, those muscles are sore after the first game or two, but for the remainder of the season...I feel great after each game. I have little trouble going extra innings. I did a 15-inning high school state semi-final game and never got sore. (In fact, it was such an incredible game that I truly did not want it to end.) There is some concern in some circles about the scissor stance causing neck issues. I've never had neck soreness. I think it is just a matter of making sure your head/neck is in a natural position and that you are not bending it in an awkward manner in order to get it to the slot. Its also a function of wearing your mask correctly (not too tight) so that it absorbs the blow and not your head/neck (but this is true in any stance). For me, the advantage (other than not getting sore during the course of a game) is that I can get my head further up into the slot. It gives me a great look at the plate. Also, if the batter takes away the slot, I can adjust up and back pretty quickly (I just bring my slot foot back toward my torso...which forces my head higher up.) Finally, I get hit on unprotected body parts WAY less in the scissors than in the box. For starters, the inside of your thighs are not exposed in the scissors. Even your cup is less exposed. In the scissors, almost all of your body that is facing the pitcher (other than your arms and stomach) has protection on it. In the box, the inner thigh of your non-slot foot is completely exposed should the ball get by the catcher. I've had some awful bruises as a result. I have pictures of literally my entire inner thigh being purple from the groin to the knee as a result of a foul ball direct off the bat.
  11. Strike Call

    I always thought that Randy Marsh had a great verbal strike call...so I stole it. Jeff Nelson was a mentor of mine back in my pro days. He works the scissors (as do I...in fact he taught me the scissors (that was back in the day when NL umps had to work scissors and AL umps had to work the box, so you had to know both in case Ed Vargo came to your game and said "let me see you in the scissors")) so I stole his physical strike mechanic. Now, when I say "stole" I'm not suggesting that I'm anywhere near as good as either of those two, or that I execute my mechanics as well as either of those two. But, I did steal. Some may ask me, "what do you have that's your own?" The answer is, "a horseSH*# strike zone!"
  12. Fed Mechanic?

    In all seriousness...especially for you guys who use the Fed Mechanics manual... what changes would you advocate for? (I was just appointed to the Umpire Manual sub-committee (it is up for review this year)). I don't promise anything, but start letting me know now.
  13. Associations in Southeastern NC

    Send me a PM
  14. 2018 NFHS Exam

    Which could lead to something like this: http://www.stltoday.com/sports/baseball/professional/beantown-meltdown-cardinals-furious-after-fenway-fiasco/article_734360a6-d35a-5e22-b814-0d2bbbd1c8bc.html (Just joking).
  15. Actually, we do not permit accidental appeals. We have appeals for missing a base/leaving a base early but only the "unrelaxed action" type (as that term is defined by Jaksa/Roder) where the runner knows he left a base early (for example: R1 only, hit-and-run and a fly ball caught by F9...and R1 is trying to retreat to first base). For a "relaxed action" appeal (where the runner left a base early or missed a base, but he is not trying to return to correct his mistake)...we don't have those appeals in South Carolina. We simply call the runner out at the end of playing action. In the OP, in SC, the runner "acquired" first base when he passed it. We would not have an "out" on the play set forth in the OP.
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