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  1. Mine isn't funny but it's something I'll never regret. I called the Police. I umpired his game on a storybook beautiful day. It was Blue sky, sunshine and baseball. I know he was nine or ten years old. My memory of him is not all that clear until he came to bat. I was umpiring a kid game as a favor for my assignor. I saw the pitch that came hard at him, I cringed knowing he was going to be hit and I watched him crumple when the ball hit him square in the body. He went down and the tears flowed..... I bent to help him, and try to comfort him. His coach ran out and we lifted his shirt to see the mark the ball made. And then we saw it, it was already red and angry looking. But when lifting the shirt, I saw the other marks the angry purple bruises that only fists and adult hands can make and way too many to be accidental..... He tugged his shirt down and got up and he said he was fine. He took a moment to dry his tears and kid like ran off to first.The game, of course, was more important than his getting hurt. I was the one who called the police. I'll never regret that. His coach bought the hotdogs after the game, more to delay the departure of the team, while I called the police. I heard later he was taken out of the home and his parental abuser was charged. I heard he moved to live with relatives. I never saw him again. I wonder so much about this boy. How could anyone do that to a child. On TV now there are ads for reporting child abuse....and the reason most don’t is "how can I be sure?". I can tell you that I was, that day, and remain today, 100% totally sure. The evidence of the beatings that boy was taking left me no grey area.... I wonder if baseball was his refuge from the monster. I wonder if he is ok. I wonder if he ever knew how much he has affected my life and my relationship with my son and with the boys I umpire. I wonder if the coach and I will ever be able to meet and not talk about that day......so far its the first thing we mention when we meet after a long off season. I wonder how many others are out there. I wonder if he is happy. Best thing I ever did on a ball field?.....I called the Police.
    15 points
  2. I want to extend my congratulations to and make you all aware, that our very own@MadMax has been selected for the plate in the Arizona 6A, (our largest schools), HS State Championship game. The game is next Tuesday May 18th and is held in the Angels' spring training stadium. Our umpiring association has an annual get together at the game to which all of the State's HS coaches are also invited. All in all, it's quite a deal. He's earned the spot based on evaluation by our association and review of the HS coaches we work with. When I heard the news I immediately thought back to the uncomfortable conversation Max had with his first assignor here in AZ. Why hadn't he been working varsity games in his home state? Was he qualified to work the national level PG event we were holding that weekend? As I recall, his first role was bringing ice water to us during the event. The first games we worked together, Max jumped in and worked three man without being compensated. In the nearly four years since then Max has taken every opportunity to work his butt off and get better. There have been endless numbers of youth games on scorching, dusty fields. Clinics and camps, taking advantage of every opportunity to learn and improve. His summers have been occupied with college and now independent ball. His primary in season focus has shifted to NAIA baseball. I still hear from so many umpires that honors like this are "political", whatever that means. Max is still an outsider here to a large degree and has much less tenure then most of the umpire working for our association. So it's gratifying to see a clear example of merit being reward. Way to go buddy!
    11 points
  3. Yes it is acceptable. Yes you can wear long sleeves or a plate coat. There are also open bottom jackets that are designed to tuck into your pants that work on the plate. The bottom line is, be comfortable when working games. If you need a jacket so you're not freezing and only have a pull over, by all means wear it. Honestly, nobody cares. If that's all you have, then wear it and others be darned. Not everyone can afford an expensive plate coat or all sorts of extra gear. Sometimes it takes a while to acquire a large variety of gear. There's not a coach, HS and below, in the history of ever, that gives a crap about whether you wear a "proper" jacket on the plate. They only care about your performance and demeanor, and even then if you have a great game, often times most jerks still think you're horse you know what. It is important to look sharp with regards to your equipment, however, no one cares about if are following the "proper" uniform etiquette. As long as your uniform is clean and in good shape, you're fine. I've commented on this forum about my thoughts regarding uniform "police" in our hobby/vocation. I'll just leave it at that. Yes you should always strive for excellence and following proper procedures. But it's a jacket. Someone gets heartburn over that?
    11 points
  4. Great on your CC and congrats to you. Here is some advice I give to guys when working the plate in a "big game" (that is, when they are in the situation you were in). I've posted this elsewhere, but I'll rehash it here. The key to getting relaxed on the plate (when you're really nervous) is to get the game into a defensive flow. Baseball is the only major American sport which is designed to be in a defensive flow. Think about it: it is the only sport in which the defense possesses the ball. Everyone wants the batters swinging, the ball being put in play, and the defense making plays. When those things are happening, the managers/coaches do not have time to waste yelling at you as they're too busy thinking ahead about their next possible coaching move because the game is moving along at a good pace. So, how does one get the game in a good defensive flow? Usually, at the beginning of the game the first pitch that you have to judge (a pitch where the batter does not swing) is an easy call. Usually the pitcher is so jacked up that he either throws an obvious "ball" or he takes a lot off his velocity and throws a "down-the-middle" strike to calm his nerves. HOWEVER, at some point (usually in the first inning) you're going to get that first "nut-cutter" pitch of the game. This is a pitch that is borderline and could go either way. THE FIRST TIME YOU GET A "NUT CUTTER" PITCH YOU HAVE TO CALL IT A "STRIKE". If you can do that...if you can go onto the field with the mentality that you're going to call the very first borderline pitch you see a "strike"...it sends a message to everyone that you're calling strikes. (And trust me, everyone gets the message.) No one is going to argue with you at this point because (1) the game has just begun and (2) they're trying to figure out your zone and, thus, are not going to complain that you're being inconsistent. By calling this very first borderline pitch a "strike" you let both dugouts know that you're not planning on having a "walk-a-thon". Furthermore, (even if subconsciously) you're telling them and yourself that you are not going to squeeze the zone just because you're nervous. Where plate umpires go wrong when they're nervous is that they allow their nerves to affect their judgment (that's human nature). Unfortunately, it is my experience that the vast majority of umpires who are really nervous end up "squeezing" the zone. And, of course, this is the exact opposite of what you want to do in a "big game". What you want to do in a "big game" is get the game in a defensive flow so that the game has a good pace and everyone is focused on the game (and not you). Call the first nut-cutter a strike, and everything settles in from there. If you can do that, in 98% of these games your nerves will be gone by the second inning. [The other 2% are games where the pitchers themselves cannot overcome their own nerves and the game turns into a walk fest...but at least that has nothing to do with you!] My mantra coming out of the locker room in these games: CALL THE FIRST NUT-CUTTER A STRIKE!!!
    10 points
  5. My best LL story wasn't even on the diamond. In addition to umpiring, I coached LL for 13 years, either regular season, fall ball, or both. Coached my kids from tee-ball to juniors. Had a kid that I coached, Ethan, off and on from tee-ball up until his 11 year old season. He wasn't the most talented player, but was a good kid and played hard. He left baseball after his 11 year old season and focused on soccer, which he became one hell of a player. We kept in touch with him and his family, and still do to this day, he recently graduated from college. When he turned 13, I received an invitation for me and my whole family to attend his bar mitzvah. I had never been to one, and if you've never been, it is an awesome time. I was very honored to be invited. During the reception of probably close to 300 people, there was a continuous slide show of Ethan's life, and there was even a couple of pictures of me and him on the ball-field, which by itself was really cool. But at wasn't the best and most humbling part. As we were leaving near the end of the event, I thanked his mom for inviting us. She said she was very happy that we came, and then said these words that I'll never forget. She told me that I had a "significant impact on Ethan's life." What, me? I mean I just coached him in LL. I never treated him any different than any other player. I always had the mindset when coaching that I would give every kid a fair shake. You could play any position for me, you just had to work hard at it. That was pretty much my philosophy when coaching. I was stunned at those words. Never did I think I'd have that much of an impact on a kid that wasn't my own. I have a lot of fond and memorable stories involving LL, but that one tops the list.
    10 points
  6. The problems start here. Right or wrong, we can't allow that, and it's more likely fishing for a call. "Knock it off, now." Now, instead of ejecting him for violating the instruction you should have given, you look like his lap dog. Not only is fishing allowed today, but he gets you to come to him. This, we can ignore. It's mere venting. That's not ignoring. Did you offer him a backrub while you were over there? You said you were busy officiating the game, which they already knew. They probably knew the count just fine, and were just trying to disrupt F1's rhythm. I expect they had some laughs back in the office about how in your head they were. Answer questions, ignore statements. But don't ignore disruptions. It seems to me that you might have an issue with caring too much (that is, at all) about whether and how much coaches like you. None of them like you. Some hate you. That's OK, because you don't have to listen to the whiney kids or their parents.
    9 points
  7. he shouldn't have had a chance to flip you off. Time to go sparky.
    9 points
  8. Congrats @MadMax! If you didn't know, I looked up on the Arizona Scholastic Umpire Association and it says that as a gift for this accomplishment, you get to pick one item from the Wilson Umpire Catalog.
    9 points
  9. Thoughts? This umpire is the REASON coaches HATE US before we even do anything! Making crap up and causing/looking for trouble. This is NOTHING all the time, every time, everywhere! This kind of stuff makes ALL OF US look bad!
    9 points
  10. My worst game, ever, was caused by my immaturity. It occurred during a four game series in the minor leagues. In the first game I was evaluated by a MiLB evaluator (I had no idea I was being evaluated...I found out after the game when he walked into the locker room). It was the best verbal evaluation I could ever have hoped for. It literally included the line, "do not change a thing! If anyone tells you to change it, you tell them I told you not to. You are on your way." Needless to say, as a young 20-something my head swelled bigger than the size of Texas as a result of this evaluation. And, I couldn't handle it. I proceeded to go out in Game 3 of the series and have the worst plate job in the history of minor league baseball. I had to throw out the pitching coach from one team who stood on the top step of the dugout and put his hands around his neck and screamed, "you're F*#King choking," because he thought I was calling too many "balls". In the 8th inning, I had to throw out a batter on the other team who thought I was calling too many "strikes". I so did not want to throw the batter out, that I gave him three warnings...but he left me no choice. When I tossed the pitching coach, he sprinted out of the dugout with a look in his eye that I have never seen before or since on a ball field. I thought he was going to tackle me, except that his manager (who was making a mound visit), sprinted off the mound and tackled him. I was screamed at for the whole game by fans (like I was at a youth game and the parents were going nuts). Because the home team was only 45-minutes from where I grew up, I had my whole family in the stands (they weren't yelling...at least I don't think they were!). After the game, as I was leaving the field, some fan was verbally assaulting me and threatening to kick my ass. My Dad and Uncle (two high school football coaches) decided to get in his face...and they were all about to come to blows! I was so GOD awful, that one of the managers (after I had ejected his pitching coach) said, "Matt, you have to expect to take some when you're struggling this much." All I could manage to say was an implied acknowledgment that I agreed that I was sucking up the stadium. I said, "Dick, I was ready to hear it from you and I would have listened to you for a long time...but I ain't listening to your pitching coach." The moral of the story is that this game will eat you alive if you start thinking and acting like you have it figured out. I thought I was "hot sh!t" and this game literally handed my ass to me. It was a lesson in humility that I have never forgotten. I was so lucky that I was not evaluated that game. If I had been evaluated that game, I may have been sent back to rookie league!
    9 points
  11. (This isn't a LL story - sorry - but it's right at the end of the age range, and is something I won't forget.) When I was still in Virginia, in November '17, I had a pair of 13U games between a team from Richmond and a local team. I worked the plate in the second game, as I prefer. Top-3, the leadoff hitter came to the plate. He suddenly got kind of a thousand-yard stare, and started taking these little steps, like the beginning of tipping over. I gave the coaches the get-the-hell-out-here wave, and then got him in my arms and helped him to the ground. At that point, he started to have a seizure. So .... game over, given the trauma. I found out through the grapevine that the seizure was from a brain tumor - one on the surface of the brain only, and still pretty new, but "not optimal," as they say. The following April, I was assigned another pair of 13U games. Same venue, and it turned out to be the same two teams. Less than six months after that game ...... that same kid was back - not only playing ball, but he was the *starting pitcher* for his team. He'd had surgery at Johns Hopkins - *brain* surgery, which I cannot emphasize enough - and was recovered and on the ballfield. I wrote about it on my Facebook feed, and said: "I don't have a lot of Big Conclusions to draw from it, other than to marvel at the times we live in, and the things we can do to help people. Even though I don't know the exact impression it's made on me, I felt like it's something worth describing." But to me, it was nothing short of remarkable.
    9 points
  12. Addendum: I'm sometimes asked how I get 7 innings done in 90 minutes. Three simple things: Call more strikes Enforce the batter's box rule Enforce the warmup rule If you allow just 3 minutes more than I do every warmup, you're adding about 3 minutes X 2 teams X 7 innings = 42 minutes per game. Even in time limit games: though some say, "who cares?" I say that quick innings are better baseball. Keeping everyone's head in the game produces much better games. Plus, who says we have to reach the time limit? Apologies for the rant/derailment.
    8 points
  13. The plate coat in my profile pic -- shown here larger so you can see just how sexy I am -- is the highly esteemed Fechheimer. The best part is that it was just GIVEN to me by a retiring umpire, and fits like it was tailored to my exact dimensions. I never win anything, but I'm calling this a huge win!
    8 points
  14. This may not be new to some of you. I apologize if I'm bringing up "old news." I was at a regional PONY tournament last night. I've done PONY for a number of years, off and on, both in Texas and Virginia, and I think I generally prefer it to LL. But since I'm mostly as "have gun, will travel" kind of umpire, I move from gig to gig, crushing dreams wherever I roam, so I don't really pay attention a lot of times to the post-season of the different orgs. So I'm there this week, working mostly the Pony (14u) and Bronco (12u) divisions, with the odd Mustang (10u) game. We had sectionals last week, and it's been fairly smooth - other than the rain we're getting belted with this week. But one of the things that was added at this regional level, starting last night, I believe, was the Shetland division. IT WAS 4U. THAT'S F-O-U-R. Now, don't get me wrong - I think the little ones are friggin' ADORABLE. And there are enough motor skills needed for baseball, that it takes a long time to develop, so why not start early? And if we were just talking about "regular season" stuff, I say "Sure! Let 'em play! Let 'em run around, try to throw and catch, play with dandelions, what the F*#K ever! It's good for them, and again - they're totes adorb!" But are you SH*#ting me, with this tournament nonsense??!? Where wins and losses are somehow supposed to then matter?? When there are players actually still in diapers out there? And - knowing coaches in the way only umpires can - where they're possibly being hollered/yelled at??!? How is this A Good Thing? I know I sound naïve, but remember - I'm not generally a "house-league" umpire - I move around from gig to gig, and don't work exclusively in one or a few places, so I guess I'm not exposed to this as much. But for F*#K's sake - there has to be a limit, or a point, where clearer heads prevail, and egos are checked at the damn door (meaning: certain adults have to stop worrying about adding to their trophy cases), and the kids just play the game.
    8 points
  15. Can I let you in on a little secret? This is not new. Let me take you back, children. All the way back through the hoary mists of time, to 1976. Bell bottoms, sideburns down to the chin-line, all-metal cars with seatbelts no more than after-thoughts. America was a younger country then. A simpler country. And in Mount Airy, Maryland, a young HokieUmp - neither a Hokie yet, nor an umpire, so actually a young [NAME REDACTED] - made it to first in some fashion that required over-running. Being a left-hander in many aspects, he turned to his left to perform the 180 degree move to get back to 1B. ......where he was tagged and promptly called out. They say HokieUmp stills roams the baseball diamonds of the world, calling safes and outs, balls and strikes, searching for the man who called him out that fateful day. All so that he can finally say, "Hello. My name is HokieUmp. You called me out on a rules myth. Prepare to die." And the circle will be complete. ---------------- All of that to say, Arch, that the world is filled with f[REDACTED] idiots. And they, somehow, breed faster than we do. So we're doomed. (And yes, I am aware that's not nearly as sexy of an origin story as "bitten by radioactive spider." You work with what ya got.)
    8 points
  16. If you had one that ran on the anger generated by parents, you'd never run out of power.
    8 points
  17. Best thing I ever saw, was SWMBO and another coach save a woman's life. It was a 2nd chance (district only) tournament for the players that did make the State or International teams. A player hit a home run. I was on the bases. The ball was thrown back in and I put it in my pocket until the half inning was over. I walked over to their side of the field, asking for who the mother was, and I handed her the ball. She had no intention of even being at the game that night, as she hadn't been feeling well. A batter or two into the next half inning, I hear a woman screaming for help. I'm in A and see another woman lying on the ground behind her teams dugout (1B side). Call it command presence if you want, but the Marine came out in me when I called time. Everyone heard it. I yelled for SWMBO (who is a nurse) and pointed behind the dugout with emphasis, as if awarding a base. I cleared the field and had the 3rd base dugout blocked by the coaches and a couple of board members that were at the game. Fortunately, they were all block dugouts, so her team couldn't see. SWMBO called for the AED and a bystander retrieved it (it was the last game of the season and the FIRST year we had AEDs at the fields). Parents gathered around to help in blocking the scene from the players. Fortunately, she was revived and we visited her in the hospital the next day. It was the mom who I had given the homerun ball to. She hadn't been feeling well due to an irregular heartbeat (arythmia I think?), but the AED kick started her and she has had a normal rhythm since.
    8 points
  18. I got to add my all time example... HS player strikes out on a smoking fast ball right down the middle....takes his bat and slams it on the plate 3 times very loudly saying F@&K..F#$%..F*&^...( everyone in the complex heard him) I look over to Coach and told him he needed a replacement for # 18....he had been ejected for profanity.... The Player Dad says: whats going on? The Player says: I just got FING ejected! The Dad say: what the F&^% for? The Player says: for something I FING said! The Dad says : what did you FING say?........... Coach just looks at me and shrugs his shoulders....
    8 points
  19. I believe he's referring to: OutWest brothers agreeing to market UmpLife products as his exclusive supplier in US, then making their own versions of his products to sell at cheaper prices. There was a big to-do about it on UmpLife FaceBook page and a bit on here too awhile back (maybe 12-16 months ago). The second unethical thing I believe he meant was when All Star was testing the Cobalt CP. Only the testers had them and they were not ready to be mass produced yet, but OutWest jumped the gun and made a deal about it on their website and FaceBook pages - complete with a special offer for sales! In short, if you bought one today, or by a certain date, then you got it for like $60 off the retail price! It was a good deal, but I understood that All Star management was very upset that they did this without their permission. All Star wasn't really advertising the CP yet, so didn't really want all this publicity on an unfinished/tested product. As a result, once they finished testing and began production, AS supplied OutWest much later than other places like Ump-Attire. There are some very outspoken folks on here and UL FB page who don't think any umpire should ever do business with OutWest going forward, but this is a personal decision each of us must consider and decide. You do you is my reaction to all of this. What makes all of this very awkward is that OutWest also runs the best selling wall for used/new umpire gear on Facebook. They ran it prior to becoming OutWest, but it is under their name now. It's hard to say you won't do business with them on one hand and then use their wall to sell something on the other. I could share my opinion on things, but it really doesn't matter what I do - you decide what is fair and just for your situation and then do accordingly. I won't judge you however you decide. I will say that, based on my personal experience, Ray's products (UmpLife) are of significantly better material and craftsmanship than OutWest's. I've tried the mask and CP harness from both and Ray's are much better, so you are getting what you pay for in the end. The main problem is that their elastic is much stretchier than his. Ray's elastic stays/holds in place for you, while their version seems to keep slipping/stretching requiring more adjustments. Finally, Ray offers full customization whereas OutWest does not offer it at this time.
    7 points
  20. It’s more “frequency & familiarity” for me, @KenBAZ and the rest of us in Phoenix. We see these coaches (and players, too) so often, on so many games, on so many plays, these guys know what Outs look like, and what our (umpire) “calling cards” are. Most umpires – Ken and I included – won’t be affected or swayed by a BC’s pleadings, so what’s the point? Conversely, there are the occasional umpires who get waaaay bent out of shape over a BC’s theatrics, and go right to emphatically cautioning, formally warning, or generally escalating strife to the point of ejecting. … all over a hopeful safe mechanic? 🤨 Really?? There are far taller hills to die on, guys.
    7 points
  21. No player can appeal a check swing. F2 can request that the plate umpire do so. I did a 1-umpire game once, and F2 asked me to appeal a check swing call. So I checked with the batter's 1st base coach, and he said the batter didn't go.
    7 points
  22. On a more serious note: T-ball should not have umpires, because it should not be in the least competitive. It should not be a proxy competition for aging, fattening daddy coaches. And it should never, ever, provoke argument of any description. T-ball should introduce little kids to the most basic fundamentals of baseball: hitting a ball, throwing, and catching. And above all: it should be constantly, unremittingly, hilariously fun for everyone there. Were I king of the world, we'd never see a T-ball question on this forum (maybe a funny story or video). The fact that we do see them reflects a range of sad facts about our culture, how it raises its children, and the diminishing value of baseball.
    7 points
  23. 7 points
  24. I saw this morale patch elsewhere, but thought it was completely appropriate for some of our members.
    7 points
  25. It's a problem because the rules have made it a problem. Get rid of the rule.
    7 points
  26. Similar to @kylehutson above... 11U LL Allstar game... 2nd or 3rd inning the visitors have scored 21 runs and have had 2 outs for about an hour, hour and a half, basically forever. Can of corn fly balls, dribbler back to the pitcher, doesn't matter. That 3rd out is not going to happen. It is so bad that the visitors parents are telling the players to bat opposite hand. Expanding the zone does nothing... ball bounces and crosses the plate, that looks like a strike. Next pitch comes in and no matter where it is, base hit. Team has been gong station to station since yesterday. We're on the 3rd or 4th pitcher at this point. You get the idea. FINALLY my U3 mentions to the VTHC who is in the 3rd base coaches box that is by chance a coach were to assist or hinder a runner, then that would be interference and would result in an out... after about 10 seconds you can see the light bulb come on. Next pitch comes in, past ball. R3 jumps off the bag, VTHC bear hugs him, U3 and I (I'm PU) both point and announce interference and THANK GOD the half is over. HT comes up, 3 up, 3 down. Mercy rule, game over. For the next 3 months during meetings my nick name was 21... like there was anything I or my partners could do to change anything. Painful... just painful.
    7 points
  27. "Horrible" is in the eyes of the beholder. Even in warm weather, I will usually wear a long sleeve shirt on the bases. I've had a lot of skin cancer issues the past 5-6 years, and I'm not going to expose myself to the sun any more than I have to, just because my partner has a contrary fashion sense.
    7 points
  28. Another great reason to support a family owned smaller company (ie not Wilson)...kudos to All Star. I’ve always liked their gear especially their masks.
    7 points
  29. My favorite so far... Bottom 7, 2 outs, R1... R1 breaks on the pitch. F2 throws a frozen rope. F2 just says "goodbye" while ball is midflight and is already 2 steps to the dugout. Ball caught, tag applied, game over.
    7 points
  30. I believe he's referring to: "OutWest brothers agreeing to market UmpLife products as his exclusive supplier in US, then making their own versions of his products to sell at cheaper prices." Absolutely not true at all. I agreed to sell them products with my logo and OW the on it with the condition they could not customize and UL products they purchased. I started getting photos sent to me with custom graphics which I did not do. I was trying to help OW with products and they threw it back in my face. I cut them off and a few weeks later they Knocked off three of my products. UL products are available through me or Ump-Attire.com. UA is my only Distributor World Wide and it is a pleasure working with the staff and President and CEO Jim Kirk. Our deal was never signed on a paper, it was a handshake based on trust. I cannot say that about a small company I tried to help.
    6 points
  31. "You'll pick up your BU when you get to the field, and if you don't, give me a call, I'll ump with you."
    6 points
  32. I do find this irritating, as it amounts to the coach arguing with a judgement call. Good baseball guys just don't do it. Funny, but I've never had a coach hammer or verbalize a runner out. Depending on the state of the relationship with the coaching staff, I'll sometimes say in a friendly way, "hey coach, if you're going to keep using umpire's signals, I'm going to start waving your runners around". Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    6 points
  33. All good except no need to go to managers unless asked. If no one asked, no one complained, there’s no need to go to them. Almost comes across like you need/want to justify yourself. You did the right thing, no one balked at it (no pun intended), just move on.
    6 points
  34. No, @Biscuit...then you have a fowl ball. I'll show myself out...try the veal and tip your waiters and waitresses, though. ~Dawg
    6 points
  35. Let’s be fair. This entire situation doesn’t happen if coaches cease expecting umpires to “go for help” simply because they (coaches) don’t like the call. On the flip side of that same coin, umpires gotta stop appeasing coaches and trotting on down to “consult” their partner(s). I’m proud of that colleague umpire in the OP who not only rightly refused, but had the fortitude to dump the guy (coach) for such a stupid demand.
    6 points
  36. Well, if this isn't ejectable the only alternative would be physical assault. Ejections are there so umpires don't have to beat the living SH*# out of obnoxious coaches.
    6 points
  37. Strikes --> Outs Outs --> Innings Innings --> Completed Games Games --> Paychecks Paychecks --> Beer Beer --> Sleep Sleep is good. Call more strikes.
    6 points
  38. And when it's really close, it should sound like "STRIKE!"
    6 points
  39. I had the exact opposite last weekend ... I saw it coming and moved to a "reverse 45" for that very play and the RF airmailed one that had me looking like a greyhound after a rabbit. Chased the kid all the way to third base. A grandma stopped me in the parking lot after the game and told me how impressed she was that I ran that kid down! Being a little older and built like a bowling ball, I took that for a compliment.
    6 points
  40. Make your call. If you are 100% certain F3 held the bag tell everyone as you are making your call: " He held it!" or something like that. If you are not certain, make your call as you would normally. If anyone asks you to get help, call time if necessary and conference with your partner(s) so only the umpires are a part of the conversation. I am not a fan of yelling across the field to get input on a play. If no one asks you about a pulled foot or a swipe tag, the call belongs to you and stands as it was judged.
    6 points
  41. Well, SB umpires do have to hear all of that chanting that probably stays in their head for a few days after... Maybe its compensation for that?
    6 points
  42. This is not directed at you or anybody else, it's just my opportunity to rant about "zombie" threads. What the eff is up with people getting so bent out of shape with people responding/commenting/resurrecting old threads? I see it not only on this site, but jeep forums I frequent, as well. Does it really impact your life that much if someone would do that. I mean, who the hell cares? Don't respond, it's that simple. I know of no law, statute, ordinance, requirement, order, directive, executive order, requiring anyone to respond to any thread on any website. I personally have better things to do then get upset because someone resurrects an old thread. Really, are you that angry, that something like resurrecting an old thread gets you that worked up? Maybe some people just make mistakes and don't realize the date of a thread, or maybe the topic genuinely interests them, or maybe to them it's a legitimate question. I realize often times it adds no value, but seriously, who cares? Don't respond if it bothers you, just move on. The thread will go away, I promise. And if it doesn't, I don't think your life will be affected in any way, shape, or form. Seriously, WTF is the matter with some people. I just don't get it.
    6 points
  43. Yes, OBS. Fielders in general are required to stay out runners' way. The only time they always have the right of way is on a batted ball. This play is not a batted ball, so OBS. Same ruling all codes. I will add that I would wait to judge the OBS: contact alone is nothing. We're looking for hindrance, and the defense gaining an advantage from the contact.
    6 points
  44. I will add this war story (which I'm certain I have posted before): Normally, for the levels I work (shaving-aged players) I do not eject a player simply for swearing (as opposed to calling me a swear word). With that said: I was once working a high school game. A groundball was hit up the first base line, fielded by F1. F1 made a swipe tag attempt at the B/R and my partner (the base umpire) called safe/no tag. After the play, my partner came to me for help and I quickly told him that I didn't have anything different. Now...to set the scene...as we were talking, parents/fans of the defensive team were yelling, screaming, etc. (the usual) at us. When we ended our conference and I began to head back to the plate, the catcher screamed, "there's no God Damn way!" Immediately, a hush came over the crowd; I mean everyone stopped yelling (please note: I umpire in the Bible Belt). The silence was broken when a mom seated right behind the backstop said, "Oh, Johnny you can't do that." I could feel every eye in the stands and dugouts staring at me. So, I ejected the player. The head coach didn't even argue...he just told his catcher to go sit at the end of the dugout. Normally, would I eject for that? Absolutely not. However, in that particular context, I was completely certain that if I didn't eject him I would lose control of the game. I mean everyone (even the kid's own mother and coach) expected me to eject him. To not do so would have subjected myself to losing the respect of all the game participants (I don't care about the fans). Sometimes, you just have to have a feel for the situation.
    6 points
  45. Have a photographic memory. Read the book. Easy!
    6 points
  46. It’s not your fault, @Scissors, but All-Star I-Bar LUC mask is not its name. That’s what some lazy bozo on Amazon called it, based solely on the obvious clues on it – made by All-Star, it has these things called I-Bars, and LUC? someone said there’s LUC on there somewhere. It’s actually the legendary FM25. It was originally designed for catchers, featuring rectangular ear guards, a pronounced chin guard that could serve as a throat guard, and a double-wire eyeport. Rawlings and Wilson had competing models. Despite Nike debuting the iconic single-wire Titanium at the turn of the century, All-Star never abandoned the reliability of the double-wire design, instead perfecting it with I-bar construction. Only the FM1000, 2000, and 4000 saw All-Star depart from two-wire, marked by an emphasis on deflection geometry over conventional expectations. Only 3 MLB guys use conventional double wire catchers masks, as I’m able to remember: Reynolds, Culbreath, and Cuzzi. Is there a performance gain? Not at all. As crass as it sounds, other than guys like Kerwin Danley (critical injury) or Tom Hallion (frequency), what mask the MLB guys wear is largely irrelevant, and simple vanity. Why? Because of three implications: A MLB umpire only works, at most, 45-50 (if we count Spring Training) plates per year. They have less exposure to “likely impacts”. In the modern game (or as Tim Kirkjian says, “In today’s game of the Live Ball era...”), if a MLB umpire takes an impact to the face/head, regardless of a mask’s protective integrity, that umpire is typically coming out of the game, or off the plate role. Medical and triage procedure now is a very slow and deliberate evaluation of head trauma. As such, the question (just the question alone) as to whether or not the umpire’s judgement and discernment of balls & strikes has been affected by that impact is too indeterminate for the Game to wait... it is simply easier and more satisfactory to the participants that the plate umpire is exchanged and replaced. Every MLB crew travels with 4, and COVID procedures saw some crews travel, or be deployed with 5, with one guy waiting and ready to go “on alert”. Thus, the particulars of mask protection are largely irrelevant. If an umpire’s mask hits the ground after an impact from a pitched or struck ball, that mask is considered a failed, or compromised mask, and can no longer be used. Such is the nature of insurance underwriting with MLB umpires that the mask is considered “worn properly” if it is secured to and about the head, covers the face completely, and is itself structurally sound and intact. If the mask flies off, we know that that’s a “good thing”, and that the bulk of the impacting energy is in the mask... knocking it off and away from your head. But not to an insurance underwriter. They don’t know or understand physics. They don’t want to know physics! Is the mask supposed to do that? Fly off like that? Was it tested and designed to do that? We have no documentation about that doing so... So no? So if that mask flies off, and hits the ground, that mask is viewed as a failure. Because according to the insurance agent, it’s nice that the umpire is OK, but can we now be assured that that mask is going to behave that way again? Has its protective qualities been affected by impacting the ground? Due to these uncertainties, most MLB umpires – the call-ups especially – don’t put a lot of uniqueness into their masks. Why would they? If it gets knocked off, and can’t be used anymore, why waste a near-one-of-a-kind SSK when you can just use a base-model Wilson Dynalite that is sitting there in the umpire room, supplied, because Wilson is (still, ugh) the EStMLB. With that said, those points seem to indicate that the Force3 Defender would be the ideal mask. It is supposed to be worn tight, providing a firm fit and base to let the springs function in the most effective manner possible. The only factor that hinders its widespread use, in Major League Baseball, is weight. Because these guys get hit so infrequently, and because it’s understood that they’ll be taken off plate in the event of an impact anyway, most eschew or opt out of the weight that the Defender inherently has. Until Wilson (finally) figured it out, and started making their own version, know what mask was the overwhelming most popular mask in Minor League Baseball for awhile? The aluminum Diamond iX3. Oh sure, the Nike Icon Titanium was the most revered, but the most popular? That Diamond iX3 had the three best properties in it that really appealed to Minor League guys – it was light (great when you’re doing 80-100+ plates per year), it wouldn’t bend (great when you’ve got an evaluator nitpicking your appearance on every game), and it was cheap (great when you’re on the Minors budget). Want to know how Diamond added $25 to the cost of their masks? Simple. Wilson showed up, selling their DynaLite Aluminum for $110-120. A rising tide lifts all boats.
    6 points
  47. You'd think that, but yelling "back" proved catastrophic.
    6 points
  48. I'm taking a screwdriver to my FM4000MAG frame.
    6 points
  49. There's a strong possibility he was seeing more than one catcher.
    6 points
  50. IMO: Both will provide excellent protection. However, you're basically asking to compare the lightest mask out there with the heaviest. Disclaimer: I do not have the F3 V2. Personally, I'd go with the All Star mag. It's super light and super comfortable. The jaw pad is really comfortable in any weather. I really like the idea of the plastic plate in the bottom pad to help disperse the energy of an impact. The top pad is just a regular LUC pad. The sightlines out of the mask are just okay. The bars are more like blades, so they're really thin but longer than your typical mask. IMO, it takes a game or two to get used to the view out of this mask. That said, I really like the way it looks and you would be in good hands with this mask. The F3 will provide excellent protection as well, possibly better than the All Star mag. Not to say that the All Star doesn't provide protection, but F3 is widely considered some of the most protective equipment you can buy (except the CP, YMMV). The F3 is heavy. Someone is going to reply to that and disagree, but it is a heavy mask. That said, it's designed to be worn tight. This may or may not be comfortable to you, and you may need to practice taking it off without taking your hat off as well. I've also been told the visibility out of the F3 is a little different because you have that floating cage that sits so far away from your face. But this mask is very protective and would be a good choice as well. At the end of the day, as with anything, it's all personal preference. Both masks feature cutting edge technology and both are very very good options. The All-Star will be lighter, probably more comfortable, and protective (and looks better ). The F3 will be heavier, worn tight, and very protective. You won't go wrong either way. Personally, I'd get the magnesium. @JimKirk will tell you to buy both on Ump-Attire and return whichever one you don't like at their expense! @MadMax will tell you the same thing I told you, but 10x longer. Good luck and happy umpiring!
    6 points
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