Jump to content


Established Member
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


lawump last won the day on January 15

lawump had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

1,053 Excellent


About lawump

  • Birthday July 15

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    South Carolina
  • Interests
    umpiring and lawyering

More information about you

  • Your Association Name
    Carolina Baseball Umpires Association; NCAA
  • Occupation
  • Types/Levels of Baseball called
    ex-MiLB umpire; NCAA Div. 1; Am. Legion (2015, '17-'19 World Series)
  • How did you hear about Umpire-Empire?
    ABUA (umpire.org)

Recent Profile Visitors

6,744 profile views
  1. Another update: https://www.nj.com/highschoolsports/2020/01/girls-basketball-brawl-doe-sends-champs-tourney-ban-appeal-back-to-njsiaa.html
  2. And it is absolutely ridiculous that MLB will be the last to have an on-field official. And, more than likely, they will be at least more than a decade behind the NFL and more than two decades behind the NBA. Frankly, baseball should have been the first. It is not like one can even make an argument that women are physically unable to officiate baseball...not when baseball is the least physically demanding sport (of the three) to officiate. Its not like we have to run up and down a court (or field) all game long, or risk being crushed by a linebacker trying to make a tackle. Clearly women can run up and down an NBA court with world-class NBA athletes for 48-minutes, and women can handle getting out of the way of huge NFL players hurtling toward them. There really is no excuse for women not to be in MLB by now. The reason there is not has been the toxic male culture that existed in MLB ownership and league offices (now MLB office), and among many of the past professional (MiLB and MLB) umpires. It'll be interesting to see if things have changed as more and more women go to umpire school, and a new generation has taken over MiLB UD and MLB UD.
  3. In South Carolina, we have five classifications (Class A, AA, AAA, AAAA, and AAAAA). Each classification has three rounds of playoffs. There is a: (1) District round (each classification has 8 districts statewide; each District has 4 teams; each District has a double-elimination tournament to crown a District champion); (2) an Upper State/Lower State (the four district champions in the "Upper" (northern) part of the state play in a double-elimination tournament to crown an "Upper State Champion"; the "Lower State" does the same thing); (3) Best-of-3 state championship series between the upper and lower state champions. Our state uses 11 different umpire associations throughout the state to assign games during the regular season. In the District and Upper/Lower State rounds, the assignor who is the assignor during the regular season for the home school assigns the umpires. The South Carolina High School League then picks the umpires they want for the state championship series. I think they use a combination of informal inquiries to coaches and assignors.
  4. lawump

    New Surgery

    My paralegal has a son who plays varsity high school baseball. So, we like to talk baseball with one another (although, she'll be the first to admit that she knows little about the game). This morning she came to me and said, "(my son's) teammate has hurt his arm. He has to have Jimmy John's surgery." And we all died laughing. Another paralegal asked, "is he getting an Italian or a meatball sub in his arm?"
  5. lawump


    [I know you're not a lawyer...but I am, so I'm going to use the lawyer analogy. It is not perfect, but here goes:] That's like a lawyer saying. "I read all the statutes, but I'm not going to read any Supreme Court or Court of Appeals decisions." Such a lawyer would be committing legal malpractice. Court decisions give meanings to the statutes; they interpret the statutes and tell persons (and lawyers) how to behave or act accordingly in a particular situation. The NFHS casebook (and the MiLB and MLB Umpire Manuals) tell umpires how to interpret and apply the rules. These publications do not make "suggestions" as to how one should apply the rules (as written in the applicable rule book) on the field during the game. Rather, they tell umpires how they "must" apply the rules (as written in the rule book) during a game. The casebook is binding authority...just like the rule book. Let me give you an example: In OBR, it is written (to paraphrase) that all runners are awarded two bases from the time-of-the-pitch on an overthrow by an infielder that goes into DBT if that overthrow was the first play by an infielder on a batted ball. The key word in that entire definition is "play". Unfortunately, if you were in umpire school with me in 1997 you would not be able to find a definition of what constitutes a "play" for purposes of this rule no matter how hard you looked in the rule book. Rather, you would have to go to the applicable umpire manual to find that a "play" for purposes of this rule is a (1) tag or attempted tag of a base by a fielder in an attempt to retire a runner; (2) a tag or attempted tag of a runner by a fielder in an attempt to retire a runner; or (3) a throw by one fielder to another fielder in an attempt to retire a runner. Without the appropriate casebook, one cannot understand the rule. This is just one example. There are many, many of these in every rule set. Heck, the MLB Umpire Manual has three pages of binding authority on when the defensive team may (and may not) execute a valid appeal of a missed base or a failure to re-touch a base. I am making a friendly suggestion that you re-evaluate your current practice of not "look(ing) in the case book all that much. ANY year."
  6. The problem I have is that the NCAA has not published an official casebook and/or umpire's manual (with official interpretations). It forces one to have to look at the NCAA's page on Arbiter (which has some interpretations) and old tests...as well as using persuasive (rather than binding) authority such as Referee Magazine's College Baseball Rules Study Guide and BRD. They're in desperate need of a casebook like the NFHS or a MiLBUD/MLB Umpire's Manual.
  7. Agreed. Only one player/person can play the position of "DH" for the entire game, and that person is the starter. If S1 comes in to pitch, the coach can tell the umpire at that time that he is leaving the starter in as the DH. Then, when the DH's position comes up to bat, if Adams can't bat because of the injury...the role of DH will be terminated. S1 can bat (and the team will now have a 9-man lineup), or another substitute can enter to bat. But that second substitute would be replacing both Adams and S1 as the role of DH is terminated. The team would have a 9-man lineup and S1 would have no re-entry rights.
  8. FWIW, I would not have brought a proposal to change this rule during my four years on the committee.
  9. My random thoughts: 1. I started in 1989 at 13-years of age. I started umpiring 9 and 10-year old kids in our town's Little League. I had to attend one, 2-hour class taught by someone with limited umpire experience (most of what I was taught is useless). I did get a Rule Book and Case Book. As I recall, they also gave a mechanics manual for 60-foot diamond. I did read them cover-to-cover. As an aside: I was the only umpire in this LL to wear an umpire uniform and have my own protective equipment. The uniform and equipment was a gift from someone who had been an umpire for a year or two and decided to leave. 2. As I progressed, I discovered Referee magazine in a library and I then subscribed. That gave me access to more umpire articles about rules and mechanics. I asked (and received) for Christmas from my parents the large mechanics manual (it game in a three-ring binder) that Referee magazine published. 3. I went to umpire school in 1997. From 1989-1996, I had no formal training (just the 2-hour class set forth above). Anything I learned came from reading those books, magazines, and pamphlets I could find. "Gophering" on the internet became available to me in my college dorm room around 1995; I couldn't find any umpire stuff. I also never really had a mentor during this time. I was smart enough to know, even back then, that all of the umpires I worked with in those years were not qualified enough to mentor me (or anyone else). Despite this, I advanced to do Babe Ruth baseball (13-15-year-olds), including post-season tournament games in Central Massachusetts. There was a lot of trial-and-error during this time period. 4. Umpire School was the first time I received formal training. Obviously, it is the most comprehensive training one can receive. That's when light bulbs really started going off. There were a lot of times at umpire school where I learned a rule and then said to myself, "well, I kicked the SH*# out of that a few years ago." It wasn't from a lack of trying; I constantly read the rules. But, let's be honest: the rule book is not easy to understand (especially when you were in middle school and high school). 5. Saying "read the rule book" to learn the rules is mediocre advice (I won't call it "bad" advice; only "mediocre). Its like telling someone, "read all the statutes and you can be a lawyer". In the law, you need to learn the case law as it interprets the statutes and, also, case law fills in the gaps to address matters that the statutes do not cover. Likewise, the rule book is meaningless if one does not read it hand-in-hand with a casebook (FED) or Umpire Manual (MiLB and MLB). There are so many baseball rules that make absolutely no sense unless you read the corresponding section of the casebook/umpire manual (which interprets the rule) at the same time. You also need the casebook/umpire manual to learn the "stuff" that the rule book does not address. This is why I think the NCAA does such a disservice to its umpires as it lacks an official casebook. 6. The other problem with the rule book, as Jacksa and Roder pointed out, is that it is not organized by topic. For example, the rule(s) for interference are spread all over the rule book; it could make a new umpire's head spin. While OBR has gotten better about this with the major re-organization a few years ago, it is far from perfect. 7. I'm jealous of all the resources that a new umpire has today as a result of the internet. If you are visual learner (like me), you can pull up a video on any rule you want on your computer. Frankly, you don't even need the rule book to become a pretty darn good rules umpire; you just have to be willing to watch and comprehend a lot of rules videos. 8. Actually, I often find that the person who played "high level baseball" is a worse umpire than their partner who was not a high level player. The problem with the ex-players is they struggle (some struggle mightily) to stop watching the game as a player/coach and watch the game as an umpire. Heaven knows we had campers at umpire school who were ex-college players who physically looked great (the image MiLB wanted to project), but they didn't get jobs because they could never get their mind to "think like an umpire". They still watched the game as a player. For example, these were the guys who would NEVER be watching when a runner ran past a base; they'd always be locked on the ball rolling around in the outfield. [So, of course, the instructors picked on them by having appeals made on the bases during camp games. Some of these guys could never break the habit.] 9. There are a lot of guys who lack work ethic. However, from my experience as an assignor most of those guys tend to be my umpires who have "1-year of experience, 30-times over". I find that most of my young umpires are anxious to learn and improve. These are, obviously, broad strokes; but that is my general observation.
  10. lawump

    FED DH Rule Change

    The posts in which I begin with, for example, "3.1.4 Situation F" are directly from the 2020 Casebook (of which I have a hard copy). Thus, they are official. @yawetag has posted a link to the 2020 preseason guide (of which I also have a hard copy), which has other case plays. The post about not being allowed to use a CR for the P/DH or C/DH is directly from an email I sent to Elliott Hopkins in September. Since it is not in the casebook or preseason guide, you will need to check with your state rules interpreter to see if that is what your state is going to follow. I can tell you that South Carolina will follow Mr. Hopkins' email.
  11. lawump

    FED DH Rule Change

    I don't disagree. That's why...while I posted the NFHS' interpretation that an offensive sub cannot have a CR...I disagree with their logic. I made the same arguments to them that you have made in this thread. As you can see, I lost.
  12. lawump

    FED DH Rule Change

    Be careful here: the CR rule has never been about who is going to pitch or catch the next inning. In order to have a CR run for you, you had to have been the P or C the prior inning. (This has nothing to do with the new Def.Player/DH rule.) For Example: Smith plays as F2 in the top of the fifth inning. In the bottom of the 5th inning Smith is due to lead off, but the HTHC sends Jones to pinch hit. Jones receives a base on balls. The HTHC attempts to put in a courtesy runner (as the HTHC says Jones will remain in the game and play F2 in the top of the sixth inning.) This would not be allowed as Jones did not play F2 the prior half inning. (If Smith had a re-entry available, the HTHC could re-enter Smith into the game (ending Jones' day) and then use a CR, but Smith would now have to catch in the top of the sixth (or another sub (not Jones) could enter to catch (which would end Smith's day).
  13. lawump

    FED DH Rule Change

    Yes. The interpretation came from the NFHS. When a player plays both positions (defense and DH), when he is batting he is ONLY the DH (as he is playing two different positions, and he can't play them both at the same time.)
  14. lawump

    FED DH Rule Change

    Yup; I had to remind our state assistant commissioner for baseball about this during our state meeting. It caused a lot of "say what's" to be muttered by the umpires in attendance.
  • Create New...