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Everything posted by MadMax

  1. Bad enough the PU missed it; what was utterly egregious is the U1 didn’t rectify it on appeal / sided with the PU!! Both of those umpires got fired. The U2 and U3 were fined, suspended and reprimanded. Why? Because they didn’t step up, step in and fix it!! Back when this occurred, the issue I (and several other umpires) had with it was the perception that the U1 was “covering” or siding with the PU in this weird, twisted “save face” or “don’t overturn your (PU, especially!) partner” thing that some “old school” umpires subscribe to. I used up my allotment of quotation marks.
  2. I’m actually eager to see how many MLB Umpires wear this new MVP5 versus anything offered by Wilson (or EvoShield, for that matter). It’s a shame, because I’m convinced the leading edge of protective pads is in WindPact and D3O. Can Wilson even be bothered to employ anything but crude “memory” foam in their gear? Once again demonstrating how much Wilson cares about us.
  3. https://youtu.be/wXGFZkIEMK0 If it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck 🦆… … … it must be a cow! 🐄
  4. Is it @acpar72 or @kylejt who has a baseball on a ski-pole, and whacks gear – while wearing it – with it to test it out? I’m not one to test HSMs… I’d give a biased review, typed in earnest once I yank one off my head (like we’re expected to do to “sell the call”) – “Nope!” I’ll never pooh-pooh you for opting to wear one; that’s your choice. I will endlessly rag on you for telling me, “A HSM is the best/only thing to get.”
  5. And my comment had everything to do with ribbing you on thinking my madness is fueled by coffee. 😆
  6. That graphite colorway looks bada$$. Especially if the cage was pow'coated flat black? Woof. Or, better yet, that graphite color would satisfy both black-trimmed umpire uniforms... and... Jeff? ( @Thunderheads )... say it with me big guy... ... navy-trimmed uniforms!
  7. We don't like things bouncing off of us. Baseballs, bats... coaches' spittle...
  8. Make a note of that @Umpire in Chief – don't offer insurance here at U-E.
  9. What are you talking about? The entire line of these new MVP5's is matte finish. Gone are the days of high-gloss.
  10. Oh? You don't say?! Needless to say, I'll be downloading and employing this often. Thanks, TMIB!
  11. This 👆 little bit here is actually more cost than you think. Take note, that OBR is available online. Sure, it's buried deep in MLB's website, but it is available for free. NCAA and NFHS? "Free Access" Both Rulebooks and supplementary resources are hidden behind paywalls. Obviously the definition of "public institution(s)" doesn't translate to making those resources available to the public. Heck, the NFHS Rulebook is still printed and circulated on paper!!! If you really want to save on overhead costs, why not just host it in a web archive that can be accessed – and modified and corrected near-instantly – at any time? Oh no no... but how then would we (NFHS) control who accesses it? We have to compensate for getting together in 4 days of meetings, with all the breakfasts, lunches and dinners necessary to discuss whether or not eyeblack is distracting enough to be dealt with a rule interpretation. No offense to @lawump intended.
  12. MadMax


    Huh... Odd how this thread hasn't gotten locked yet, for such an... observation. 🤔 I mean, I could vaguely recall one of mine getting locked... 🤫
  13. Au contrare, monsuier Maven. Too crisp, too snap… too firm. I’ve built up three callouses on my fingers in three specific spots: the first is, since I was born prior to the digital age, and writing ✍️ was still king, the pencil resting spot on the right middle finger; the second is the main knuckle of my left index finger, which I habitually used as a shoehorn to slide my shoes on daily; and third, the knuckle on my right thumb that snap-bounces off my CP shoulder on every strike signal and every time I put the ball in play. <clack!> Play! <clack!> -IKE!! (I’ve shortened it) Do you think with “Mad-“ in my name. I’m gonna limp-wrist it??
  14. So this showed up in my eBay notifications as Recommended Buys! (exclamation point not mine). https://www.ebay.com/itm/225212546269?mkcid=16&mkevt=1&mkrid=711-127632-2357-0&ssspo=Avivfl6mTia&sssrc=2349624&ssuid=VziYH8tnRdi&var=&widget_ver=artemis&media=COPY Evidently, it’s a base-entry model of CP from… the. Big. Gold. W. 🙄 Three things!: It’s at a great price, likely because the Goodwill Store selling it doesn’t know what it is. They think it’s a “Youth” Umpire CP, likely because it’s only 13” (and tagged as such!). Oh poor muffin! If only they knew that umpire CPs are, typically and usually, 12-13”. Besides, there aren’t any youth umpires, c’mon now! It’s commendable that this has hard shoulder pauldrons and a hard sternum, but where is the clavicle protection? Surely a company like Wilson thinks clavicle protection is important, considering that they used to list their WestVest products in the softball section! Putting that MLB logo on there is misleading and endangering. Don’t they know there are more than a few individuals who base their purchasing decisions on “what the big boys wear”??
  15. @Richvee, I was a career-long Honig’s ball bag owner. Was. Everything about the UmpLife WT ball bags is right, from shape to volume to color (they do fade, as everything here in Arizona does, eventually, just not as fast as other fabric bags) to material used to the asymmetric pocket treatment*. As easy as it is to hold up to nine baseballs per bag, it’s just as easy to retrieve that one last lone one from the bottom. *- the first version internal pockets are too short, and don’t allow the UmpLife lineup folder to fully seat within. Ray has promised that the newest version has adjusted accordingly. The indicator pocket, though, is ideally sized for a pack of gum. 🍉🍬
  16. First, only in Major League professional baseball is the ball, once dead, made Live by the F1 engaging the rubber with a/the baseball. It does not require a signal – either vocal or point – but MLBUs have mixed… advice(?)… on it (the classic “do as I say, not as I do” instruction). With that said, everything else – professional and amateur – needs us as PU to do (point, wave, gesture, etc) or say something that completes the “checklist” to make a/the ball Live. Even in Minor League environments I’ve worked, the expectation is that the PU is doing/saying something to make the ball Live. If it wasn’t expected or necessary, the pro guys (coaches, POs, etc) would be the first to tell us (“Blue, why are you shouting?”). With no runners on, a vocal isn’t really necessary. A gesture or point suffices. With runners on, a vocal becomes (almost) necessary. Must you do so or say so every time? No, misses can happen. Happen to everyone. I remember one memorable instance where, on my second plate of the day, deep in the game, where I got into my IP and went HOK… and the F1 is standing casually on the mound, engaged in his IP, and just lookin’ back at me. I’m beginning to wonder what’s taking so long, what kind of crazy pitch is taking forty signs to read thru… when I figure out, I didn’t say… So I straighten up (wearily) and call out “Play!”, and the F1’s face brightens in earnest, having been expectedly waiting the PU (me) to do what I’ve been doing all game, up til then. Evaluators and trainers do treat the physical gesture and/or vocal of putting the ball in play as a metric or point of feedback. One of the checks on their checklist. I know, all too well, that NCAA requires it… why? Because, invariably, the college guys are dissecting how I point the ball Live, down to the agonizing (my agony) detail. 🙄
  17. This is how my first Nike Icon Steel met its end. MSBL 18+ game, 90+ mph foul-back right to the eye-port and caved it in. Had to stop the game, dash into the parking lot, and retrieve my spare. Always travel with two (at least) masks. Even HSM guys should carry a spare, inexpensive TM. What if your assigned-to-PU partner forgot his mask? Just lost it? Just broke his? What if you yourself get injured on Plate, such that you cannot continue? You can certainly loan your CP and shins, but mask? Not too easy (nor is it easy to loan a Personal Protector, thus I have a (sellable) spare). Yeah, it’s an absolute shame. What I’d love to do is locate the factory that has the planform and/or made them for +POS, and broker a new deal for them to produce them with new branding, with newly designed pads, and available in black, silver, gunmetal, sky blue… … … … and navy .
  18. I’m all for keeping base shoes clean. As allllllll my colleagues know, I have foaming shoe cleaner, sport wash, and soft brushes aplenty to clean my shoes. I even prefer an air compressor! But if you’re spending time actually polishing base shoes, it’s a waste of time.
  19. Everything my esteemed colleague, @wolfe_man said is dead-on. I fully endorse it (especially since I’ve used both +POS ZRO-Gs and All-Star magnesiums, and everything in between). With that said and considered, the type of material used for the mask frame, whether it be steel alloy, aluminum, titanium, or magnesium, is inconsequential. As long as the mask is functionally intact, and provided there is adequate stand-off distance to mount proper pads and there are no collisions between hat brims and bars, the mask material is not a cause or contributing factor to a concussion. It isn’t. I just isn’t. Wilson and their MLB apologists have been lying to us.* The mask pads are what prevent, inhibit, or mitigate concussions. And, until Team Wendy stepped into the arena with their Zorbium advanced formula foam, no one was putting any consideration to pad composition or construction. Sure, Nike may have introduced gel-foam pads alongside their Icon Titanium, but they weren’t used by umpires, nor were they intended for umpires. Please keep in mind, whether or not you experience a concussion on an impact is largely due to you and your reaction to it. If you sharply recoil, your brain sloshes around and whiplashes inside your skull. Many times, what gets mistaken for a concussion is actually a compressive impact to the jaw, which shocks and affects the nerve bundle that is adjacent to your jaw hinge. So, more than anything, you need pads that will perform dynamically when loaded with an impacting force. And only a handful of pads will do this for you. *- “Titanium is dangerous.” - A MLBU Consult in 2015.
  20. Already beat ya to them. I got them at the top of September. It was a set of Ambition turfs that I tried on, supplied by one of the AAA players for Royals, to confirm the sizing fit for first the Mizuno plate shoes that I purchased at the top of the summer. They’re light, responsive, and very robustly made. There’s no use of that “polished” leather, which I think is unnecessary and prevents good ventilation. I put these on-par with my vaunted New Balance Vaadu’s for maintainability. I have not used them for an entire game yet… I’m keeping them pristine for my first college game of 2023.
  21. Right, but are the game fees reflective or in relation to that? We’ve got guys – on here, even – who equate new gear to game fees. 4 games will get ya Cobalt, for example. By that math, a Mizuno or SSK or HiGold CP is going to run you 6-8 game fees! So are Japanese game fees in this sort of relationship? Heck, if they are, I’d be up for importing myself to Japan!
  22. Context – amateur or professional, age, experience level of the participants, etc. – is, of course, key. Is this a case of a 10 year old not knowing where to stand? Or, is this a case of high-end high school or college player being coached on intimidating an opponent in a twisted game of chicken? Or, is this an adult game and this Batter (and his team) knows his opponent is throwing nothing but cupcakes on the outer eighth of the plate (or the opposite box), and the PU has been calling them as strikes because he wants to get this game over with? On that last example, that better not be you as my PU partner. 🤨 Either way, the Rules can help you here. If painted / chalked boxes are present, the Rules state that the Batter must have his IP wholly within the box. You’re completely within your rights and powers to hold up the F1 so as to get the Batter to comply to that Rule. If boxes are not present, or the lines have been obliterated by repeat batters or plays at the plate, then we might want to become more proactive. Again, inexperienced youth, easy. But if elder ages bring defiance, most catchers, some pitchers, and some defensive coaches will point this out. In this case, you can certainly draw rudimentary boxes (once again) and enforce them. If, however, his IP is compliant, but he’s leaned out over the plate, then I’m going to be verbally “probing the sand” for intent. “You know where you’re set up, right?” If he fires back with, “Yup!” or tries to “play dumb” (you can tell), then I simply call B&Ks as usual, and if the Batter gets hit, adjudicate the situation as it unfolds. Conversely, if this is a youth, who looks back at you with that “error! Error! Does not compute!” look on his face, because the coach told him to get up on the plate, but he’s never encountered an umpire who’s confronted him about it, then I’m likely to explain to him the “if you get hit in the Strike Zone, or intentionally move into the pitch, you ain’t gettin First”, shpleel.
  23. I think the planform is the same as the SSKs, minus the Goth-club pyramid studs. Every product made in today’s Industrial Age has something called a planform. It’s a digital package, much more thorough than a blueprint or a CAD drawing file. Without definitely knowing, the planform for the System 7 CPU4000 may have been sold or shared to HiGold by All-Star. Or, an equipment designer may have been contracted by All-Star to develop the planform, with the terms and conditions set that once X time had passed, or the unit was no longer being produced for or carried by All-Star, it (the planform) would be released to be produced for other parties. That HiGold CP is very much the same planform. If ¥66,000 = $447, then what the hell are Japan’s game fees??!
  24. Here’s a crazy thought… If there had been an additional umpire, and he (or she, to be egalitarian) had definitely heard and/or seen that the pitched ball hit the batter, and the PU missed it / was blocked out / averted his eyes (turned his head, as novice amateur umpires are prone to do), is his additional information (ie. “evidence”) to be ignored? Hm? Do we not already see PUs go to their BUs for additional information, such as a check-swing appeal? Or BUs going to their PU for a pulled foot or a swipe tag? Or are we supposed to stick to the “original” call all the time, every time? Hm?
  25. Caked him, huh? There is no “redo” in real baseball. There is nothing in the Rules that enables that, including the 8.02c (or whatever it is) citation that claims an umpire can make any call he deems necessary. If he’s pursuing the course of action to “redo” the play out of some sort of maligned sense of “fairness”, then he has to know – or he’s going to fast realize that he’s tugging a thread that will unravel the entire sweater – that the origin of the play is a pitch for a strike. An Uncaught 3rd Strike. You can’t undo or un-call a strike! If he’s so pursuant of “getting the call right” or “fixing this”, why isn’t he just calling the Runner safe, and scoring the run?? That seems to be the most effective course of action, despite how much embarrassment he’d be wearing.
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