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The Man in Blue

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Everything posted by The Man in Blue

  1. I must be missing something ... none of that has anything to do with the question or the discussion. 28. Fielder loses possession and ball enters dead area (8-4-3e, 8-4-3g). All runners awarded one base past last base touched at time ball enters deadball territory (8-4-3e PEN. EXCEPTION 1). Rule 8 Batter-Runner and Runner Section 4 Runners Entitled to Advance Article 3 ... A runner is entitled to advance without liability to be put out when: e. (with the penalty and the exception) ... and g. with the penalty
  2. Not a fan of that either. If they are going to do that, they should also tack on $5/inning for extra innings.
  3. In my experience around Central IL, for high school, you get paid if you show up (and they did not try to contact you). Lesson learned: don't answer your phone after you leave the house. I had a game that got rained out while I was on the way. The AD called and told me, so I turned around and went home. I was fine with that until I found out my partner didn't listen to the message they left for him so he showed up at the school and they paid him. For tournaments, I've only seen pay for what you've worked once you are there. Once the game starts, it is a game. When I was slated to UIC (before COVID), I was trying to develop a better policy because the organization was complaining about umpires who would rush out to start a game when they knew they shouldn't, just so they could collect a check. (They didn't like that I pointed out their policy was as much to blame as that umpire.) As kind of a follow-up question ... what is YOUR policy for sitting around at tournaments? What policies have you seen? It drives me up a wall to stick around and wait for hours for no compensation for my time.
  4. I'm glad it applied in your unnamed code. I'm just going to walk away from this inanity now. The implications for umpiring are yours to judge.
  5. I'm assuming this question was sparked by this ... WARNING: NSFW LANGUAGE I disagree with the commentator. I don't see one little step. I see several steps rounding and taking him from foul territory into fair territory. Looked like an attempt followed by a quick second-thought to me.
  6. It absolutely could be a rule in another association. But you didn't say that. You didn't say what association you play. You said "That is a slow-pitch softball rule." I can say definitively it isn't USA, USSSA, or NFHS. It absolutely could be a serious misapplication of an actual rule as well. It would be like me working a Varsity NFHS game and sending a kid back for getting of the base too early because they do it in baseball (Little League, certain age). I don't umpire slow-pitch and have no desire to. However I do plenty of fastpitch softball and It bugs me when we can't just admit there are dumb umpires and have to resort on blaming stupid things on "the other sport" (whether that is baseball umpires blaming softball or softball umpires blaming baseball).
  7. No, that is not the origin of that myth. Before speaking up, I looked in the USSSA slow-pitch book and double-checked the USA book to see if there was a slow-pitch difference. I guess it easier to "blame it on that other sport" though. 🙄
  8. Last time I used this rule, we would call them out. But that's because coaches couldn't behave themselves and thought their 6- and 7-year old daughters were going pro the next day.
  9. Tangent ... where can I find this? I've heard this referenced before and I would love to read it.
  10. The Man in Blue


    This I love ... That coach had a fantastic demeanor and attitude. I would work his games any day. In an effort to steer this back from the sh!tshow it was inevitably going to become ... Question for everybody along the lines of these comments: How do you view the bookkeeper in relation to your game? In theory I agree with @Velho IF we were talking about a league/tournament provided bookkeeper. However, the vast majority of the time the bookkeeper is a team parent. In that regard, I cannot expect them not to act as a fan of their team. (Ideally, yes. Realistically, no.) On that same note ... I don't agree with @JonnyCat's statement "You work for the game and the umpire." The bookkeeper/scorekeeper does not work for me and I want no part of having to oversee them. There is a tangent conversation on another forum I frequent about umpires checking/not checking with the bookkeeper about the count. My stance is that a parent bookkeeper is NOT a part of my umpiring crew, so I am not going to take any action that furthers their fanciful idea that they are an official part of the game. Here is another part of that that I take issue with -- YOU (bookkeeper) are also NOT a coach or a member of the team if you are sitting behind me. You are a fan. Do not sit behind me and scream about the count or because you think somebody is batting out of order. YOU HAVE NO STANDING. If you want to act as team personnel, YOU MUST BE IN THE DUGOUT.
  11. The Man in Blue


    I have typed and deleted several comments. I have nothing nice to say, especially to the other side of the fence.
  12. @LRZ I appreciate the honest feedback. While I can't say I agree with it, it is definitely excellent to help me focus. I am a person who talks through things to get to a solution, so please do not interpret my posts as anything more than that. I am asking for some advice on places to look, experiences to look for, and just some people to bounce this conversation off of. I have done lots of soul-searching over the last few years. I left a good-paying career in government/public relations because it was sucking the life out of me. I became a teacher in a very undesirable location at one of the lowest pay-rates in the country hoping it would help me provide something worthwhile back to the world and provide me with some sense of purpose/meaning/value. I do think COVID and my move to another part of the country set me back, and that may be some of my personal dilemma. I was set to start doing some UIC work (for which I had some big plans) and was starting to make some connections in an effort to travel to other areas in the region. Then the world shut down and I had to give those things up. Yes, I shouldn't have compared myself to Max in saying that I am lagging behind. I feel that way because I feel like I was taking steps to try to advance, but did not see that those were getting me anywhere. I got tired of paying for "assignor's clinics" and getting nothing out of them (I went to the same college softball clinic three-years straight and never got a single game from the guy). I got tired of calling the same people to get platitudes, but no games. Unfortunately, my area does not have strong associations or consistent ways of scheduling. It is a free-for-all. I'm sure other areas see these same problems, but I got burned out on the politics and (hence, why Fed post-season is no longer a priority to me). Maybe I'm just bitching, and don't be afraid to tell me if that is the case. I won't get offended. I suppose I was trying to ask for new ideas to expand my umpiring career. I have lived a sheltered life and probably am not even aware of things that are out there ...
  13. Not the look I am looking for ... but I hope you rocked it like this!
  14. Please don't think I am in that group ... I think the black generally looks sharp. I just am not anti-navy, because I think it can look equally sharp too. I'm not anti-powder either. What I do think is much of it does need some updating. The only colors I am opposed to are white and red. White looks fine, but I just don't wear white (I would walk through a CDC clean-room and come out with a stain). Red ... just ... no. It just screams "LOOK AT ME!" My biggest beef with you USSSA Softball. (The gardener's bags -- yeah, those are the ones. Don't EVER do that.) (The navy masks -- I like the navy and red look, but I kind of feel about the red pads like I do red shirts. Now I am debating if I want to take up this challenge, Max!) I don't think I contradicted myself. I was pointing out that NFHS has a standardized uniform they want, but I have never seen any assignor, association, etc. enforce it or ding a person for it (unless it was something just way beyond the pale). The only time I have ever been told, without any leeway, to wear something VERY specific was when I was asked to do a USA Softball National (you have to wear these specific things -- down to the pants -- and you can only buy them from us). I turned it down. To that point though, NFHS Baseball DOES also has a specific thing they want to see: NAVY. Also to that end, they don't say charcoal or heather ... they just say "gray." They do acknowledge that states will adopt other colors though. In Illinois, for baseball, we have been told we can really wear anything we want during the regular season as long as we match our partner. Postseason though ... Navy and gray is non-negotiable.
  15. Maybe I gave the wrong impression, I'm not burned out on umpiring ... just ready for some new experiences and something that shows me I am still progressing. Perhaps some of it is the wrong level, but it's what I can find in the summer. I don't mind it most of the time. When it starts to grind on me I do take some time off or cut back on my scheduling for a while. The problem is, that is what is waiting when I get back. I did take a year off (COVID). Coming back from that, I came back to a new area with new people. Some of that helped, some of that hurt. I am hoping I can parlay some of that into new opportunities this year, but I also realize that I am 99.99% not staying in that area beyond this year.
  16. Same age Max, but feel as if I am lagging so far behind. It bugs me that it can be such an ageist "profession." I believe I have the talent and ability (and if not, I am certainly willing to work at it more), I just am not finding opportunities. Not that I could talk my wife into moving like that (more so I can live vicariously through you), but can I ask you if you moved just for that? Does that give you enough work to make a living or do you have a day job? I'd like to find a path similar to what you are on ... particularly the training other umpires part.
  17. @Mad Mike and @umpstu … thank you! Both of those camps have been on my radar for a few years. The timing of both has always caused a conflict (Don King’s is typically on the same weekend as my wife’s birthday AND our anniversary while the Midwest one was always the same weekend as a standing work event). This year … well, I’m in Mississippi, but I am going to check my grad school calendar. @SeeingEyeDog … I haven’t lost my love for umpiring, just getting bored (and sometimes fed up) with the stuff that I am working. That was a GREAT post though!
  18. @Senor Azul … you OK? Seems like you’ve been a bit cantankerous lately. That’s my job. 😉
  19. As long as you wear it with the appropriate shirt, why wouldn’t you? What did they wear with their navy shirts, black? There are still just a lot of old bitter umpires who rebel against anything navy for no practical reason. Now … those heather or charcoal ball bags, THOSE are a sin. The Swiss army ball bags, THOSE are a sin. For what it is worth, I highly recommend these: https://www.ump-attire.com/Products/S383/Smitty-Deluxe-XL-Expandable-Umpire-Ball-Bag
  20. @MadMax … NFHS Softball has not accepted the navy shirt as of 2020. Some state associations may have. I had never heard that about a navy mask/harness. Not sure I have ever seen one (beyond a website). As for why “they” don’t let go of their color … why don’t “we” let go of ours? I get such a kick out of baseball umpires demanding another sport adopt their practices. Honestly, not many places seem to care much about the pants color anymore. Seems like most pants are no longer actual heather or charcoal anyway … just lighter grey or darker grey.
  21. Easy answer … Hat and ball bags match the piping or the primary shirt color. If the piping is navy, hat and ball bags are navy. If the piping is black, hat and ball bags are black. NEVER wear black hat and ball bags with that shirt!
  22. I know that I found several of those velcro spots trying to put my shirt on and take it off. I kept "ripping" pieces off! 🤪 I did take the bicep extensions off, those things went down to my elbows!
  23. My question would be what level of ball do you work and what level of protection are you comfortable with? I’m slightly taller and much heavier, so I prefer low profile CPs as well. I take flak for this, but I have loved my DaviShield for far too many years. I have worn it for Varsity baseball and low-level college softball. I’ve never had an issue with getting hit and it not doing the job. I particularly like the fit and protection around my collarbone. I love the flexibility of it, but my biggest gripe is the way it traps heat in. For a system based on multiple smaller plates, it should have a better heat transfer system. I have purchased a Schutt HDX in an effort to better handle the heat. It is NOT low profile. The first time I put it on, one of my housemates asked me if I was going to go play football. I do not like the look and I need to dial the fit in (which I am not sure if it is going to be possible for my build). I’ve only used it a few times and haven’t take a hit, but I’m confident in it’s protection. At the same time, because I got a bargain and knew I could pass it on if I didn’t like it, I tried the Adams Low Profile as well. I hoped it would be a happy mix of the two worlds. Again, I haven’t used it much, but I wasn’t happy with the harness fit. There just wasn’t enough snugging it up to my body, so it didn’t feel right to me.
  24. I’m still wondering why people keep asking umpires about bookkeeping. I know it appears in some rulebooks, but I will have to admit I have NEVER read any of those sections.
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