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Posts posted by HokieUmp

  1. I *think* "Bi-district championship game" is a fancy way of saying "Second round matchup."

    Four teams per district make the playoffs - which is weird, especially when it's a 4-team district.  Then there's some cross-district, where teams from your district cross-over and play some other district.  (I have ZERO idea how that's determined.)  So even my first-round series tonight is a "bi-district" round.  Although, now that I'm thinking it out, with the math and all, I guess that means there *might* be a third-round, to get a champion from that bi-district match-up .... 8 down to 4 down to 2 down to 1.

    Hell, I don't know, man;  I'm just going where Arbiter sends me.  I just wanted to point out that this series was likely early-on in the process, and between the sheer number of matchups, and the universal need everywhere for umpires, you might not be seeing A-listers.

  2. I'm not gonna defend that in ANY way, because it can't be.  But let me share a few random points out there to address different issues.  (I haven't been in Texas but three years, and I'm not remotely softball, so some of this *might* be wrong, but into the breech....)

    -- There aren't protests in Texas.  At least not in baseball, so I'd guess/assume it's the same in SB.

    -- For the numerous "how are these guys doing championship' games  (And/or "playoff"?)???" queries:  given that this just happened, that was likely a first-round playoff game/series.  Baseball starts the first round this week, so that would be about right.  From what I can tell, there are about 100 BILLION teams that make the first round here.  I feel like I'm only slightly exaggerating, given the records of some of the teams in the BB first round.  And I can say that our chapter has already said it's 'all hands on deck' for round one, at least, due to the sheer numbers.  Also, teams can apparently request "outside" chapters do their playoff games, so that can create body-count demands as well.

    And again, not saying a word about the play.  Not least of which because MY first-round series starts tonight, and karma, as they say, is a bitch.

    • Like 1
  3. 8 hours ago, maven said:

    Potential hindrance is not illegal. All fielders and all runners have the potential to hinder each other all the time, every play.

    Well, the OP by @lawump DID in fact mention there WAS hindrance, albeit minor.  But what I meant in my write-up, and should have re-worded it, probably, is more along the lines of "a bench coach that's out on the field, and gets near enough to a play like that, has about a 1-in-1 chance of me using 'umpire judgment' to find hindrance."  With the comment, to the head coach that comes out, "tell him to keep his dumb ass of the field, then."

    Or.... more sciencey - that potential hindrance is gonna turn into kinetic hindrance, when I get done with it.

    8 hours ago, maven said:

    This is not apposite: that's accidental hindrance, which is actual hindrance not intended. 

    Again, my thought process is:  we get players for violating rules.  Roughly a quarter of the time - and I'm likely being conservative - there's some nonsense defending the action as "he didn't mean it."  Proper response:  "So?"  And so, if we're getting people who were just doing their thing on the field, where they're meant to be, and a legit part of the playing action, then I'm absolutely finding a way to get a coach, who knows full F*#King well he's not to be out there during live play.  It's kinda Old Testamenty of me, but I'm okay with it.

    Now, if there's some interpretation/edict/memo that explicitly denies me that judgment, so be it.

    • Haha 1
  4. I don't know if this is a hill I want to die on, but I'd make a case for INT in all of the above.

    Not so much because he actually changed the outcome of the play, but the fact that he even had a potential *impact* on it in the first place!   We get runners for INT even though "they didn't mean it!"  We get - or at least, I've recently seen YouTube footage from a Big Ten game where it was 'got' - an out for a bat tossed into foul ground that causes F2 to stumble an miss a pop-up.  But those things BELONG on the field at that time.  A bench coach belongs ...... well, on the *bench.*

    So I guess, until the angry mob tears me to pieces, put me on Team Interference.

  5. 3 hours ago, GreyhoundAggie said:

    Yeah, this year has been stupid for games here in Tx Hokie. Not enough officials and lots of games.

    You're not kidding.  Even as high as that total is for me, if I'd been more aggressive, I could have had a LOT more.  So far, I'm staying out of a lot of the weekend traveling road-show stuff, because a) it's filled with crazy people on the field, and b) the one source I have here for it doesn't just assign you some games - he likes to give you a FIELD for the day!  (B---h, I'm mid-50s, with feet that are betraying me!  That dog don't hunt for me any more.)

  6. 10 hours ago, ArchAngel72 said:

    Well game 3 was a no game also 15 min before game time a cold front hit town and thunder lightening and rain all hit at the perfect time to cancel it.


    I was actually just pulling into the parking lot when the 1st lightening strike fired off overhead, 30 seconds later it was raining 2 min later as I got the text confirming game was cancelled It was pouring. 

    So 0-3 this year all rain outs

    Fri and Sat look to be better weather so there is hope yet


    Had game 67 tonight.  Arch, you NEED to come south, brother!

  7. 3 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

    The optics are often more important than being "right".   Unless egregious, the optics of one ump being "overruled" by another on a simple judgment call is much more detrimental to game management than whether or not the runner did actually beat the throw by half a step.   I would say it's often more important to assert yourself and own your judgment.


    And as I recall, @BLWizzRangeris a new umpire.  One of the things coaches are gonna do, is test a new umpire - even if he's just new to *them*.  They're not always coming out for the "good of the game - getting the calls right!", flag-waving deal;  they're sometimes coming out to see if they can't get over on you.

    I've been umpiring 18 years now.  But I'm only in my 3rd year in Texas, AND I'm in my second chapter in that time.  So there are a number of schools I'm seeing now that never had me before, since '20 was such a cluster.  I guaran-damn-tee I've had visits from coaches "testing out this guy," based on what and how they argued a call.

    • Like 2
  8. 3 hours ago, Thatsnotyou said:

    Wasn’t addressing you - it’s a common quip from travel coaches every time we don’t go for help, even when we rightly shouldn’t. 

    I usually don’t try to react to it, but I’d love a good one liner back to a jackass travel coach. I’m much more loose there compared to a HS game. 

    If you're looking for replies..... considering it's one of those traveling road-show coaches, "Go f--- yourself" is a classic.  An "Ol' Reliable," if you will.

    • Like 1
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  9. On 4/7/2021 at 2:53 PM, BLWizzRanger said:

    Coach hollering 'He didn't move' on a HBP - Not SO worried about that.  Although I would remind them "once you throw a pitch halfway into the box, you kinda lose your right to complain."

    Bronx Cheer from Dugout - I don't know what to make of this.  Literally, a raspberry??

    Assistant Coach coming out - I hope you at least stopped him dead in tracks with something like "no further, Coach!"  I'd PREFER that you ran him.

    'JC' or 'My God' comment from bleachers. - don't care.  Don't talk to the fence.

    'JC' or 'My God' comment from pitcher.  - stop that immediately, by whatever means you have.


  10. 20 hours ago, BLWizzRanger said:

    So I got my first two scrimmages in.  The season starts on Monday here in WV.  I decided to have a little fun and create a newbie checklist on uncommon, maybe, experiences to see how a newbie's experience grows.  What I have experienced in the first 8 innings of work is listed below. 

    Dropped Ball Balk
    Coach hollering 'He didn't move' on a HBP
    Missing a pitch (sort of like Shawshank's creed where everybody is innocent, 'always is perfect' is the Umpire's creed?)
    Bronx Cheer from Dugout
    Catcher's Interference
    Assistant Coach coming out
    Pitched ball off of PU's forearm
    Pitched ball off of PU's ankle
    +10 Batter half inning
    'JC' or 'My God' comment from bleachers.
    'JC' or 'My God' comment from pitcher.


    What should I look forward to? :sarcasm:

    From some of that list, you should maybe look forward to sharpening your Ejection Report writing skills.

    • Thanks 2
  11. 1 hour ago, beerguy55 said:

    Parents yelling at me when the ball stops six inches short of the pilons and I dare to A) give him the home run or B) not give him the home run - if I'm gonna get yelled out anyway, I'm likely to give the kid the thrill of a home run


    Accused of cheating for my team, because, yes, I've laid ten grand in Vegas on the outcome of this game AND I really need to make sure my ten year old's stats are presentable to the scouts sitting on the grass (because we're in the middle of a public field and it doesn't even have bleachers)

    Being yelled at by my own teams' parents

    Not to mention the number of parents who, at that age, have their kids on meal plans and nutritional/exercise regimens and are literally already talking with college recruiters.   The moment I met those people I immediately hated them.  

    AND, when I coached this level, I would not send my players home from third on wild pitches/passed balls - they could advance to third that way, but wanted my team to hit runners home...now I'm being yelled at by my parents.

    Jesus Christ I hate humans.


    I feel you. 

    At my 8U tournament - and the phrase "8U tournament" is already wrong on multiple levels - I saw a lot of the same thing.  I wrote in the GroupMe group the umpires of that field use:  "the kids are adorable.  I'd love to shoot the parents and coaches into the Sun, but the kids are great."

    That was also where I was introduced to pre-recorded walk-up music.  I know you and I disagree on this one, but I just .... "hate it" is probably too strong, but "dislike it" is too weak.  Mostly, I think it's dumb.  And while I see your point about giving the little dudes a taste of the big time, I'm not convinced they notice or care.  If they do, and it makes them feel cool, okay.  But these guys are the same ones that, ten minutes later or ten minutes earlier, are digging in the infield dirt, or messing with the dandelions.

    • Like 1
  12. I've spoken about it elsewhere, and I'm of the opinion that walk-up music for kids, house league or otherwise, is a Sign Of Impending Doom For Mankind.  Or something.

    Having said that?  Not touching it, as far as getting it turned off or turned down, or otherwise grabbing that oh-so-sh!tty end of the stick.  And would suggest that everyone else to the same, and we all "get over it," if you will.

    Why?  Because as dumb an idea as it is - and as bad as some kids/parents musical choices seem to be - it's not REALLY hurting anything.  If a pitcher is rattled by music "being directed at him," pitching's not really the position he should be playing.  And hey, it's as close to being A Real Ballplayer as most of those kids are gonna get.  I might enforce some volume control, and I will definitely make sure it's shut off during play, but otherwise, I will grit my teeth and carry on.

  13. On 3/27/2021 at 10:47 PM, BT_Blue said:

    It could be worse @HokieUmp. I ACTUALLY had a "the hands are part of the bat" argument today... IN A VARSITY GAME! SomethuSomething i NEVER thought i would have at that level! 

    That .... is horrifying.

  14. Given what's being talked about, I'd like to provide a play that happened just today in a JV game, and our decision, so that you guys can light me up over how we %$#$@-ed it up, and get the whole budding "Mr" controversy behind us.

    R1 (I think we had at least R2 as well, but not important for the story), 1 out.  Batter pops up into foul ground.  F2 circles around and makes the catch, well into foul territory.  R1, because JV-ball, was off and running at the crack of the bat, and is WELL away from the base.  F2 goes to double him off, and throws towards 1B.  The retired BR, ALSO because JV-ball, is wandering around, heading for the dugout, and manages to get get doinked in the head by the throw.

    After a pregnant "....the hell just happened?" pause by all participants, my partner and I both signal out, and we get R1 for interference by a retired player.  A little talk with the O coach, but not heated.

    It wasn't until a few hours later, on the drive home (this happened in the first of two games), that I thought, "Uh oh.  We may have cocked that up."

    Did we, in fact, cock that up?  The knocking down of the throw was unintentional, so I'm now thinking we did.  R1 WAS dead to rights, minus the player's melon in the way, but I don't think that helps.

    • Haha 1
  15. 13 hours ago, GreyhoundAggie said:

    This is how TX works. The fees are per game with travel calculated separately. You call 5 games at the same location, 5 game fees + 1 travel fee.

    As a (current) Texan, can vouch for this.

    It certainly dilutes the value of games, once you go past one.  In Virginia, I rarely, if ever, worked more than one game in a night.  Schools played at their own campus, and JV played M and Th (usually), while varsity was Tu and F.  Here?  If the district has a central complex, all the varsity teams play there, and JV are at the school.  BUT, they then play at least two games, sometimes a 3-bag, at that central complex on game night, thus doing the "one travel fee" deal.  If it's a "country school," as I put it, they play at home, BUT they'll do both JV and V that night, *again* needing on one travel fee per umpire.

    And while the travel fee can make a single game okay, total fees here run behind SE Virginia, at least, if not elsewhere.  I won't say what I was making *three* seasons ago, when I last worked in Virginia, mostly because I don't want the other Texan umpires to get mad .... possibly at me.  (But if you fellas want to know, anyway, PM me.  Just get mad at TASO and the UIL, not me.)

  16. I don't doubt any of these stories, but I'm astounded by them.  I've heard all the stories about how we're losing officials in different sports, and I KNOW it's true, and I can see, in the different groups in which I work, it ain't getting any younger.

    But the idea of doing games alone?  School games?  I'm gobsmacked by this.  I've never worked a school game solo, either in Virginia or Texas, and I'm in my 12th HS season.  And the oldest age-group I've done it for is LL Majors/Bronco (11-12) - and that's been the leagues in question were notorious being cheap, NOT because we didn't have the bodies for it.

    I'm sorry to you guys that have to put up with that crap.

    • Like 1
  17. 12 hours ago, LMSANS said:

    You didn't use an indicator?:o

    Actually, I did.  Just to ensure there'd be no F*#K-ery with the pitch count.  And, because they still were only allowed three strikes within that five pitches.  Yes, I know - "hey dummy, three strikes is a foundational plank of the game!"  Yes.  But.  If the whole point is to get kids into the game, playing batted balls and making plays, and running bases depending on situations, why not just let them get all five pitches with which to do something?  Maybe that's my inner hippy coming out.

    But being used to having an indicator, anyway, and wanting to make sure these junior Joe Giardis would keep it in their pants, I used one.

    • Like 1
  18. If only.  Not that the sign is wrong, more "if only people would read it AND comprehend its meaning."

    I rose to the pinnacle of our profession last weekend, "working" a coach-pitch tournament.  (In my defense, I had a 3-day window with no games, and this time of year, that makes me twitchy.  Also, they actually pay legal, US, spendable tender to work the games.  I'll happily take $26 bucks to work a 50m drop-dead game.  Turns out, I can count to five pitches all on my own!)

    Anyway, the field I was on had very little foul ground, and the stands were thisclose to the fence.  So I got to hear every slanderous description of my character, integrity and heritage.  Or would have, if I hadn't been zoning it out.  I DID hear about the runs I cost different teams.  Joke's on them - I planned that SH*# FOR DAYS before the weekend!

    Coach-pitch.  8U.  We are doomed as a people.

    • Haha 2
  19. 1 minute ago, beerguy55 said:

    The problem is, another day another ump he IS getting that call.   Been there done that.

    You're not wrong. 

    Thing is:  A day may come when the courage of the plate guy fails, when we foresake our partners, and break all bonds with the rulebook.  But this was NOT that day.

    (I couldn't think up enough stuff for the whole speech, so that's all I got.)

    • Like 1
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