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Showing content with the highest reputation since 09/25/2019 in Posts

  1. 14 points
    Sunday, I was working a (local boys) 11U scrimmage for a coach friend of mine. Ball hit to infield, overthrow at 1B, runner runs through the bag and turns to the left (exactly what you are thinking) and returns to the bag. Coach yelling "tag him, tag him!", ....and I made the safe call. Coach (not demeaning, just trying to communicate) yell out, he turned to the left!! I replied, "you're right!" Coach asked for time to make a pitching change. While at the mound, he asked me about the call. I told him that he will not find it in any rule book that the runner MUST turn to the right. If the umpire adjudges that the runner made "a move" to 2B, then he would be liable to be put out. He asked me what constitutes "a move". To which I replied "you will know it when you see it". Fast forward to last night. His son playing in a local rec ball game. I'm in C, his son gets a base hit, overran 1B, ball was overthrown and he "made a move" to 2B before Dad tells him to get back on the bag. As soon as I saw this, I looked at him (1B coach) and as soon as I did, he says "I recognize it now!". We both had a good chuckle about it and carried on with the game.
  2. 13 points
    A few weeks ago, I was calling a youth travel game. I was on the plate. About two innings in I was very aware of a maternal voice behind the fence saying, "Yes, honey. That's the man with the blue shirt. He's the umpire. He's working right now. He can't talk to you." Skip forward to the end of the game and I hear a small child's voice say, "Hi, umpire!" It took me a moment to realize it was a 3 year old boy right up against the fence, about knee high to me. His wee fingers wrapped tightly around the mesh of the fence. I look down and say hello and ask him his name and he says, "Steven..." I asked him if he had a good time at the park that day and if he plays baseball and he said, "Momma says we are here to watch Nate. But, I am here to watch you..." He then added that he wanted to be an umpire someday. I had no choice but to spray and wipe down my indicator and then bend down and push it through the fence to him and say, "Well, Steven...", I said, "if you're going to be an umpire, you're going to need one of these..." To paraphrase William Goldman...Since the invention of the smile, there have been only 5 smiles that were rated the most happy, the most pure. This one left them all behind. This particular field is a grueling uphill and downhill walk back to the parking lot. I walked a little brisker that day back to the car. It must have been the weight I shed handing off that indicator. Also, the trail was a lot more "dusty" walking back than I remembered when I arrived... A great opportunity to film a new Coca-Cola ad was missed that day. ~Dog
  3. 11 points
    Well the good news is that the SCHSL has not canceled high school sports in South Carolina, yet. So now, thanks to Coronavirus, we have four college umpires working a high school game tonight. The game is scheduled to be played at the Columbia, SC, minor league stadium. We all won't be paid (they only pay for 2 umpires during the regular season), but we said "screw it...we'll divide the money up into fourths. Let's just go have fun!"
  4. 10 points
    I'm learning a LOT about my fellow umpires these last couple months. For one, the fact the "it's just a bad flu" is STILL being sold simply astounds me. The lack of trust in the "mainstream media" - you know, what we older people call "the media" - and basic science facts and data is discouraging, at best. And there's a certain air of "aaaahh, F*#K those 3% people! They'll be *fine*!" being broadcast here. Just to remind you - that 3% figure cuts across the umpire community, too, fellas. I'm one of those high-risk people, and I feel like if I get it, there's a really, REALLY solid chance that it'll kill me, at least based on what we've seen so far. So, the cavalier attitude about the "mere" 3%, or the railing against the "tyranny" of mask-wearing and/or closing businesses (tyranny? really? with thousands of years of human ugliness to other humans to which to compare?) is ...... irritating. And I'm saying that last bit mildly. Now, you may counter: "Sure, Hokie. But that just means we lose an older, useless person like you - and it probably means you were either morally weak, or just a pussy." And that's fair. But here's the thing: even the weak-ass 3% - whether they have underlying risk, or are older, or just a pussy - we'd all like to live, too. If that's all the same to you. I'm well aware that my situation is a decently comfortable one, so I'm not desperate to re-start my business or get to work for my employer to pay bills. But if we F*#K up this "re-starting," we're gonna be out of pocket for even longer and even more people are gonna die. And, oh yeah - we've already lost 90,000+. Here in Texas, there are worrying signs about even a slower restart: we'd been fortunate to have, for our size, decently low death/sickness rates. And then we restarted, slowly, on 1 May. Guess what? We started getting 800-1000 or more new cases per day. The governor is trying to play the angle that "we're testing more, so of COURSE there'll be more positives." Maybe. But it could ALSO have something to do with people interacting again - especially in a state where, it seems to me, a lot of people are still buying the "it's a hoax" line. And the US death toll is still hitting 1,000/day more often than not. What's my point? There are many. I just started typing, and kept going. And look - I'm not getting back on the field this year. For one, the machinations of mechanics all ....... suck, as far as I'm concerned. If I'm going out, I want to umpire, not jury-rig some nonsense, or do some two-man calling of balls and strikes. And we're too close to each other for me to feel comfortable, since people won't wear masks and/or won't admit they're sick, or something. Having said that: if you want to go out and work games, there's really nothing I can do to stop you. I hope that you'll be as safe as possible, and I hope that you'll do as much as you can to protect others as much as yourself. But just know that not every one of us here is some strapping, healthy God Of Officiating who is somehow immune. (Yeah, that idea cracks me up, too, but I had to say it.) And our safety/life is tied into you taking the disease, and your responsibility, somewhat seriously. And if someone wants to end up taking this down, that's cool, too. I mean, sure, we're an umpire site, but we're 17 pages into a thread that's meandered all over the place.
  5. 10 points
    Thank you all for your messages. It's been an incredibly difficult time this past week, and we are putting one foot in front of the other as best we can. Christine's passing was unexpected, though she had been battling illness for many years as a result of radiation treatment for Hodgkins when she was 17. It truly does make a difference knowing that my family is in your thoughts and prayers.
  6. 9 points
    If you were to see what I write on FB, you would know that I'm a couple things: 1) highly opinionated, and 2) a political animal. (You can't really grow up in the DC area, and not be the second of those, I wouldn't think.) And I know that even clicking the "Quote" button to START a reply - with *me* typing - has the potential to turn this thread into to an utter SH*#show. So I don't want to get too nutty (edit: I wrote like another 6-7 paragraphs, so I may not have hit that target). But even the other day when I first read this paragraph, it ..... gave me pause. I really, really, REALLY disagree with, well, pretty much all of it. This is not "no different" than any of those. It's killing people. And at a rate that is frightening - around 30x what regular flu does. Just now, I took the numbers from the Washington Post, which got them from places like the WHO, the CDC, Johns Hopkins (just to stave off any "yeah, buts") - and the world-wide death rate is around 4.1% right now - that's INSANELY higher than regular flu, or some of the other flus. (For laughs, since our US testing situation is a joke, and it could arguably lower our current death rate by showing how widespread this virus REALLY is, I took out the US numbers, and it was still right about 4.1%.) This SH*# is serious, and should be treated as such. Look, I had the flu this year, too. Mine was about mid-January. I think the swab revealed it was Influenza-B. If you had it in November, I would argue that while you may have had a rough go, it wasn't COVID-19. Even now, AZ doesn't have but 21 cases out of the 7800+ in the US right now, and that's even since it started the exponential increase. You know why the person that resides in the White House finally started taking this a little more seriously? A British scientific group, using data on this specific virus and being experts in disease, its spread and the modeling thereof projected that if the current "la la lal i'm-not-listening-i'm-not-listening" tone of the WH was maintained, the death toll on this could reach 2.2 MILLION. That number starts to approach 1% of the total US population, to state the obvious. Even finally starting to get more ambitious, that effort might only knock the toll in half, to 1.1 million. Now, I hope they're wrong, and wrong to a major scale, but I'm not so sure they are, since it still seems people aren't reeeeeeally taking this fully seriously. As a high risk candidate - not REAL old yet, but I have diabetes, my thyroid has been impacted for years by an autoimmune thing (controlled by taking hormones), and I had the cancer and chemo thing a year and a half ago - I'm taking this seriously. A week ago, I didn't WANT to, just because I still wanted the season to keep going. But the more information that's out there - not the breathless manner in which it's portrayed, but the actual WORDS AND DATA that are said - means this still can go terribly pear-shaped. So please don't say the word crisis in quotes, or otherwise make this sound like it's designed to remove the current occupant of the WH, or cow the population, or lead us to that One World Order, or whatever. This is a problem. And got the potential to go from problem to A Real Problem. We'll get past it as a species - inexplicably, we always seem to - but this could be a rough go. This is all I'll write. But evidently, that had been pent up.
  7. 8 points
    "OK, coach, I'll address it." Then don't grant his batters time.
  8. 8 points
    I finally have a rig worthy of posting here... - Force 3 v2 (bought here from @harrisonj23), just got back from Mask-It powder-coated in gunmetal grey - A Spyder throat guard (bought here from @codizzle), also powder-coated in gunmetal grey - New black pads (bought here from @wolfe_man)
  9. 8 points
    Framing and pulling are different. Framing is positioning the glove to highlight the "strike-ishness" of the pitch. Catch the breaking pitch closer to the plate, set up on the outside corner instead of diving across the plate to catch that pitch on the black. These are not deceptive, so umpires aren't "duped" by them. Indeed, proper catching technique requires framing. Pulling a pitch is moving the glove back into the zone after receiving a pitch not in it. I warn catchers that pulling pitches tells everyone that they think the pitch was a ball, and that I plan to defer to their judgment on those pitches. If they hold it still, there's a better chance that they'll get the pitch on the black. Have I been duped? Probably, but not often I hope, and compared to the pros I'm not that good.
  10. 7 points
    Don't officiate kids' games.
  11. 7 points
    I have no problem with the ejection. But you might consider this response, which is defensive. In some of these cases, I'll move directly to "Knock it off. There's no arguing judgment calls. This is your warning." Typically, these jackwagons will step over the line immediately, and I'll facilitate their departure. An intermediate step, for a coach who's been OK so far, is to put him in his place a bit. "Coach, if you have a question, you may come out and ask in a normal tone of voice." That frames the allowable parameters for mature discussion among adults, and gives him a gracious way to STFU. Again, if he can't observe the parameters, he may rant and rave outside the confines of the ball field. If he does come out, I'll start: "What did you see?" I'll give him his say, in a normal tone of voice, which is mostly what he wants. When he's done, or a reasonable time has elapsed, or he starts to repeat himself, I'll say: "OK Coach, I had the ball beating the runner and the tag down in time. He's out. Let's play ball." And that's it: a direct exchange of views, politely delivered, and ended promptly. We should tolerate and indulge in nothing else. He's accusing you of cheating. Call him out: "Coach, are you accusing me of cheating?" If he says yes, dump him. If he says no, then tell him to KTSO and that's his warning. If your league allows restriction to the dugout, do that. He's lost his privilege to discuss calls with this remark.
  12. 7 points
    2 things ......... 1) all black shoes make you look like you have dress shoes on (moreso in the field) 2) as you get older and slower.... white on your base shoes makes you look faster!
  13. 7 points
    When he said, "that's on you." Time to dump right then and there. No need to discuss it any further. He's implying either you're incompetent, or you've favored the other team. No need to tell him anything else, IMO.
  14. 7 points
    The call made in the MLB playoff game was called exactly as I was taught, as a professional umpire, to call it. I would have called it exactly the same way if it had occurred in one of my minor league games, and I'm pretty sure close to 100% (if not 100%, outright) of MLB umpires would have called it exactly the same way. Once an infielder turns his chest towards the infield and waives off the outfielder...he has shown ordinary effort (as that term is understood on the professional level). This was really not a hard call on the professional level.
  15. 7 points
    Best I can offer at this time. I have very few photos of me working and not totally sure were they are even at if I knew. But this is my son on my first Father's Day almost 4 years ago. His mom, unknown to me, cobbled together a pretty darn accurate umpire uniform for him to wear.
  16. 7 points
  17. 7 points
    Maybe I'm too long in the tooth to have fun anymore? Is it wrong of me to just be in the camp of simply running the kid and moving on with the rest of the game?
  18. 7 points
    We already have Ball/Strike Specialists ... they sit in the bleachers.
  19. 7 points
    My son makes double pay, but still could not "live" of it if he were flying solo. How? I give him my money as well. I tell him that my pay is being outside with my son while doing what we love. He knows the rules, is firm with his calls, and has gained an understanding of the games dynamics, as well as the respect of the coaches. I give him my pay, he is 17, a big kid, a good student, and I get to work with my boy. We only work on the weekends and have a great time. I am lucky in that we quiz each other all the time, and role-play situations. He is much more confident student, and i am a proud papa.
  20. 7 points
    Great idea! Your post prompted us to put your suggestion on yesterday’s product committee meeting. As a result, we are putting the black LUC mag pads on order this coming week.
  21. 7 points
    Absolutely not. First of all, the play in question was correctly officiated. Call was right, mechanics were right, and penalty was right. Second, the "orange bag" creates so many problems, including increased chance of injury, harder fair/foul calls, a bunch of new rules needing to be made (depending in how they implement it), and also it just looks plain stupid.
  22. 7 points
    Baseball's been around for over 150 years - it will still be around when you're ready to return. Nothing is more important than time with family.
  23. 7 points
    12) Getting Hit Many many years ago doing the plate in a LL game. The batter swings and misses and lets go of the bat on his backswing. Bang, the lights go out. I wake up as I'm being loaded into the ambulance. Off to the hospital for an examination and some concussion tests. The wife gets called and shows up at the hospital about 15 minutes later all worried. I tell her I feel fine except for the lump on the side of my head! After about 2 hours the Doctor says everything checked out OK and the wife and I head for the Exit. Get to the Waiting Room and there are about 75 people there clapping and cheering as I walk out. Players from both teams, parents, fans, my umpiring partner, ... Priceless.
  24. 6 points
    I just heard from Windpact that due to a large response/outreach from umpires, they’re going to try to get their partners to offer replacement pads! Exact words: ”actively in discussions with our co-branded partners to convince them to stock these replacement pads and will keep you posted on the outcome.”
  25. 6 points
    I’ll have to say (not to go off rails of the powder coating topic) but I got the AS Cobalt SC and it’s pretty sexy paired with my powder coated Gunmetal 4000MAG
  26. 6 points
    Only allowed if they're not distracting.
  27. 6 points
  28. 6 points
    Where'd that miss, middle? Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
  29. 6 points
    Au contraire: better still is all the hot moms who are glad to see me.
  30. 6 points
    The only "better" feeling in youth baseball..............is when the PLAYERS say that.
  31. 6 points
    I am working on a few things right now and hope to have some testing done in the next month or two Exterior ABS protection with pad for impact displacement Separate additional pad (washable) for comfort and impact Also working on a generic low profile pad replacement idea
  32. 6 points
    So our local LL is running a Covid shortened "local" season. Last night, I had the plate for the last (minor's 8-9-10) semi-final. Win.......or go home. VT Manager is a "competitive" dad, living vicariously through his 10 y/o son. Yes, you know the type I am referring to. Anyway, (now keep in mind I said 8-9-10 y/o) VT Manager coaching 3rd, giving signals to the batter EVERY PITCH. NO runners on, but we've got signals. When runners are on base, there are MORE signals. Now I'm thinking to myself, If I were coaching this age, I'd have 2 signals. POINT TO BATTER AND SAY - Hit the ball. POINT TO RUNNER AN SAY- run! This goes on to the point where it starts to delay (by the slightest amount....EVERY BATTER) the game, and I start with, "let's go batter, get in the box". Now they kept 1 foot in the box, but took forever to get the signs bring 8-9-10 y/o. I finally walked down to talk to the manager. "Skip (another manager that I knew), I would really appreciate it if you can get your signs in quicker so we cam keep the game moving". To which he replied "Bill, I've got to get signals to them". I understand, but when you delay the game, I'll start calling strikes on your batter(s). Now if you think about this, you want to run up the F1's pitch count. If I start giving him free strikes, that's not helping your cause, right? He understood and started trying to get them in quicker. Later in the game.......say.....the 3rd or 4th time he had runners on 2nd & 3rd (and couldn't get them across), Batter looks at 2 pitches right down the middle. Batter swings at the 3rd one and misses (stranding fellow 8-9-10 y/o players on base). Coach is walking back to 1B dugout and I hear "GUYS!! YOU HAVE TO EXPECT THAT CURVE BALL WITH 2 STRIKES". I didn't have the heart to tell him that at this age, what he calls a curve ball, the rest of us call gravity.
  33. 6 points
    Let me suggest: ONE WARNING, PERIOD. Don't desensitize game participants that warnings are meaningless. After a warning, they have ejected themselves when they continue. "That's enough" is vague and means something different to everyone. But if you say, "This is your official warning. If you continue to argue you will leave me no choice but to eject you from the game," can that possibly be misinterpreted? Yes, ignore the fans (unless they become threatening or are hurling slurs). DO NOT ignore the players. Give them the same warning you gave the coach and if they decide to forfeit the game, then it's on them, not you.
  34. 6 points
    @Rock Bottom The $125 is purchase on the final version - see our recently released video. We met with All-Star, yes a couple adjustments but the one that customers will receive on the pre-order will be the latest version that they finalize. That pricing lasts until July 31, hope that helps. Happy to answer any other questions.
  35. 6 points
    I got to use this CP in a game a few days ago. It fit me very well around the torso and shoulders. It is low profile and protective. I took off the gap plates and just shortened up the shoulder caps which was a nice fit with no openings for a ball to find me, based on my shoulder size. I left the bottom extension on but I'd remove it were it my CP. I took two shots, one to the lower part of the CP and one on the shoulder. First was a pitch that bounced up and the other was a foul ball off the bat to the shoulder. Neither were extreme shots but the CP reacted well and I felt nothing but the pressure. I really like the plastic plates, especially the breast plate. It's already curved a bit so it fit me well across the front. I don't need another CP but I pre-orderd this one from Out West because I liked it and it's a killer price.
  36. 6 points
    Product is not finished yet. We are meeting with them next week to go over things before production begins. Full and accurate details to come when the time is right.
  37. 6 points
    If I decide to do any games, the first time a parent or a coach wants me to play the covid police, I'm done.
  38. 6 points
    17 pages in... what's the score anyways? Who's winning? Any minds been changed yet?
  39. 6 points
    This might be an unpopular opinion, but I'll say it anyway. Any youth baseball league that runs a season this year can never again claim safety is their top priority.
  40. 6 points
  41. 6 points
    LL in our area is closed until at least 4/6, per the recommendation of LL HQ. HS - My son's district has cancelled all games, but they can practice. Many other districts are cancelling, or they are currently moving to a 'no fans in attendance' policy, although in the next week or so, I bet that changes. As for the hysteria... if our media could stop being a debate channel and get back to actual reporting of facts, and if our leaders could stop bickering and actually lead, much of the hype surrounding these events could be quelled. As it is, the lack of information, conflicting information or just passing of bad/poor information is driving people to react, thus the fun at the local Target or Costco. Stay safe.... wash your hands and wait for the zombie apocalypse.
  42. 6 points
    Look, we can get this done - we're ALL gonna have a lot of free time on our hands soon, the way this is playing out. @beerguy55, I'll take south-central Texas, and just door-knock - always remaining 6' away from everyone I talk to, of course. Let's get a sign-up sheet going, fellas!
  43. 6 points
    No spectators were allowed to attend the Varsity HS game I worked today. It was the best crowd I have ever had at a game.
  44. 6 points
    I'd get the Robert Kraft autographed model. (sorry, I'll take my bench restriction now.........)
  45. 6 points
    I need to move there so I can move up the ranks quicker!
  46. 6 points
    Slimmer couch cushion?
  47. 6 points
    Bottom line for me is...Players should follow the rule if they don't want this called on them But, they're players, and will do anything to gain an advantage. The BS line about a RHB having to veer off the straight path to the bag to get in the lane because he starts in fair territory is garbage. they're running there to get in the way of the throw. They know it. Players will do anything to gain an advantage.... Funny how the only time you'll see R1 run on the infield grass is when there's a GB to F3 ttrying to make a throw to 2B. Funny how the only time you'll see R3 cross the foul line and run on the infield grass while trying to score is on a GB to F5 or F6. (hey, how about that, he veered off the shortest distance between two points). ...(yes both legal, but still only done when it's advantageous to the runner) A runner will turn in the same direction as a fielder who just threw the ball when he's in a rundown to try and draw OBS Funny how the only time you see a player fall over the plate on a swing is when R1's stealing second. These guys aren't stupid. They know what they're doing. Turner knew exactly why he was running illegally down to first. He got caught. So, as we do in today's society when we get caught...we blame someone else or challenge the rule.
  48. 6 points
    I wrote earlier that I haven't actually been umpiring in quite a while. I worked a pretty full schedule in 2017, then in 2018 due to a new job I only worked 6 games combined b/t collegiate and high school. So I haven't worked since March 2018. I've been giving it a lot of thought and have decided I will continue my umpiring hiatus until my son graduates from High School. There are multiple reasons. Yes, I have enjoyed having my evenings and weekends freed up. But that isn't the sole reason. I really want to be there to help my son through high school. My son attends J.P. Knapp Early College High School (and yes, I'm bragging ) where he completes both High School and his associates degree in 4 years (or potentially 5 in some circumstances) through a combination of dual enrollment and accelerated classes. It is a rather intensive and while he is academically gifted, it is rigorous and I want to be able to be home to assist him. I am very thankful that I have been able to be home to assist him. So I am going to continue to ensure I'm there to be there for him. While my daughter attended and graduated from the same program she is much more academically motivated and was much more independent. But in hind sight knowing more of the rigors of the program I feel bad for not being there to assist.
  49. 6 points
    Why in the world is your mask EVER put on the fence? I am just going to say it. NEVER DO THIS! For starters, it's unprofessional, and unnecessary. Your mask goes in your hand, under your arm, or on your face from the moment you step on the field - including your plate meeting. When I was just getting started back in LL, it was common that when newer guys left their masks on the fence during plate meetings in the district tournament, it ended up zip-tied to the fence where they left it by one of the other umpires. It was partly a prank, and partly a lesson to keep your mask where it belongs.
  50. 5 points
    Don't be afraid to admit anything .... you can't learn if you don't ask questions. This stuff if important to what we do, because simple /fundamental things should be called correctly all of the time, and this is one of those times! That's what we're all here for is to learn and get better, right?!


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