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I umpire because my kids got too old to coach.  I've had both my sons (23 & 19) call with me during different seasons.  It really gives us something we can still do together and talk about things that happened for hours after.  I mainly just call in my own community park, where I invested many hours and dollars in the past.  I'm trying to get some of that money back!  The coaches and parents, for the most part, are good to us.  It gives me a chance to get to know a lot of people and call all different age groups (4-18 yr olds)

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I could go for hours on this topic. I could mention my spotted past and explain how important my newfound responsibility is. I could continue and tell you how umpiring is making me a better man and a

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I started out umpiring strictly for the money ($30 for 1.5 hours of work was better than any part-time job a 15-year old kid could get).

I'm 23 now and these past couple of years I've realized I just love the game and love being out there. This year I am trying to improve every game and read the rules/case book whenever i can. I like being out there so much I have decided this is something I would like to try to pursue professionally next year.

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I do it because I can't play anymore, and when I could play, I wasn't very good.  It gives me a chance to stay involved in a game that I love deeply, and there's just something about being on a baseball field that seems to make all of my worries go away...at least for a few hours.  Yeah, the money is nice, but umpiring is something that I truly enjoy doing.  My fiancee thinks I work too many games, and sometimes she's right, I do work a lot.  I do it because it's fun, and when it's not fun anymore, I'll quit.  Until then...play ball!

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Wow, this is a great thread.  So many moving thoughts.  Makes me glad to be even a small part of UE.

 

I don't know how to say how much baseball means to me.  I'll just say I was born on the first day of the World Series in 1956.  My father said he got that day off, and got to watch the Dodgers play the Yankees (on TV) --- we lived in Brooklyn, he was a Dodger fan.  Then I got out of the hospital (with my Mom), on the last day of the World Series.  And, my father got to watch the last game of the World Series.  He taught me the game, coached me, watched me, even got me interested in umpiring.  He's been gone now for 10 years.  I get choked up every time I watch "Field of Dreams."

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I don't know why, but I was always a rules junkie for baseball.  I umpired my first game at the age of 11.  We had no association in my rural area - most games were umpired by dads.  I starting learning the game from a new vantage point and I loved it.  The more I learned, the more I wanted to learn.  My youth and HS coach had umpired in MO before he moved here when I was 13 and he was a big influence/mentor/rules interpreter.  He taught me that it wasn't just knowing the rules that was important, but applying them correctly in the situation at hand.  I umpired throughout my youth and was always given the biggest games.  I never ever felt a sense of power out of that, just pride.  When I played in HS there wasn't much of an association still.  Our umpires were mostly teachers and they borrowed shin guards, a catchers mask and a raft to call our games.  They did a fair job, but I even had them coming to me about rules after games.  The consensus in our small town when a rules question came up was, "Ask Bobby.  He'll know!"  I always took great pride in that, but also realized very young the responsibility of needing to be correct and not just spewing BS.  I passed my first HS test when I was 19 without looking at the rule book.  What I found then was that the rules were only part of umpiring and the mechanics were a big deal as well.  Who knew???  if only I had known about the umpire schools then, I would have chased the dream of being an MLB umpire.

 

What umpiring has given me over 30+ years is unconditional love.  I have been through the deaths of loved ones, divorces, job loss, etc and through it all umpiring has been there.  When life circumstances have taken me away for a time, I have always been able to return without being judged.  When I have had a bad day on the field, I have been able to come back the next day.  No matter what, umpiring has been there for me and has become one of 2 places where I can just put everything else out of my mind and focus on the moment at hand.(The second is a mountain stream with a fly rod, but that is another story!)    

 

My dad and brother share my love of the game, but they think I am just nuts for being an umpire.  It isn't for everyone, but it is for me! 

 

"Let's play two!!!"

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I never played organized baseball (I played basketball well into my college years).  Once we had kids and I stopped traveling so much I was assistant coach for my son's 7U coach pitch team and had fun but didn't know much about baseball.  Once I stopped traveling for good he was playing 9U ball and by 11U I was the head coach.  I quickly learned that while I enjoyed nothing more than being on the field, I was in way over my head from a rules perspective.  So I got into the rulebook and started learning.  By time he aged out of daddy-coach ball I realized I wanted to still be involved so I contacted the guys who umpired a lot of my games and next thing I knew I was behind the plate for my first game.  Since then I have done HS ball and some tournament ball, but with a job change in 2011 I lost a lot of the flexibility I once had from a time perspective so I had to give up HS ball.

 

I do love umpiring, but by time the spring season ends I am ready for a break.  As soon as I start missing it, fall ball is here.  Perfect.

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There's hope for you yet, Jocko.

I do like the National Anthem, though, but only when it's done live, by a student (preferably a cute girl).

And I'm TOTALLY down with Jack and Rose drowning. THE most insufferable movie evah.

 

 

 Who the hell are Jack and Rose ?

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There's hope for you yet, Jocko.

I do like the National Anthem, though, but only when it's done live, by a student (preferably a cute girl).

And I'm TOTALLY down with Jack and Rose drowning. THE most insufferable movie evah.

 

 

 Who the hell are Jack and Rose ?

 

 

You never saw "Titanic"?  Good for you!

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There's hope for you yet, Jocko.

I do like the National Anthem, though, but only when it's done live, by a student (preferably a cute girl).

And I'm TOTALLY down with Jack and Rose drowning. THE most insufferable movie evah.

 

 

 Who the hell are Jack and Rose ?

 

 

You never saw "Titanic"?  Good for you!

 

Spoiler: The ship sinks.

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Having been in the USAF 22+ years, it's yet another goal to succeed at.....climb that ladder.  Leadership is bread into us.  I could have retired and worked at XXXXX.  But why did i stick with officiating?  Well, for many of the reasons stated above.  And:

 

I appreciate the responsibility bestowed upon me.

I belive I'm an impartial, but fair and good judge of things.

I LOVE a well-groomed field.  (and i tell whoever is responsible)

i LOVE well-played ball. (and i tell the coaches)

 

Most of all, I LOVE the responsibility bestowed upon me (and my partner) to administrate a game from start to finish.

 

Without US (ALL OF US HERE)...........it doesn't happen.

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Having been in the USAF 22+ years, it's yet another goal to succeed at.....climb that ladder.  Leadership is bread into us.  I could have retired and worked at XXXXX.  But why did i stick with officiating?  Well, for many of the reasons stated above.  And:

 

I appreciate the responsibility bestowed upon me.

I belive I'm an impartial, but fair and good judge of things.

I LOVE a well-groomed field.  (and i tell whoever is responsible)

i LOVE well-played ball. (and i tell the coaches)

 

Most of all, I LOVE the responsibility bestowed upon me (and my partner) to administrate a game from start to finish.

 

Without US (ALL OF US HERE)...........it doesn't happen.

 

Without us, its called practice.

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There's hope for you yet, Jocko.

I do like the National Anthem, though, but only when it's done live, by a student (preferably a cute girl).

And I'm TOTALLY down with Jack and Rose drowning. THE most insufferable movie evah.

 

 

 Who the hell are Jack and Rose ?

 

 

You never saw "Titanic"?  Good for you!

 

I'm glad somebody asked because I didn't the reference either. I was blissfully unaware. :)

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I do it because I get to wear tights and nobody makes fun of me for doing so.

 

JM

John;

I would only laugh if you had a system to match said tights with specific shirt/ball bag/hat combos.  :crazy:

 

That said, my last medication update took care of the need to do this.....at least for now.

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I wish I had a moving story as to why. 

Here's my why:  I umpire LL Softball  :fuel: .  IMHO the girls playing the game deserve much umpires that what they have had. Simple as that. 

 

:ranton:

Case in point; last night at my daughters Jr Division game.  BU looks good; uniform, creased slacks, cap etc. No problem with this umpire.

PU ump shows up a few minutes late and in sweat pants and a t-shirt.  She has no idea of the rule book i.e. dropped K3, slide or avoid rule, ball hits dirt then hits batter....you guessed it no HBP.  Basic LL rule book mythology applied in many situations.  This wasn't a volunteer, she was compensated to do this job. 

 

Yes, it is LL. Yes, it is daddy-ball.

But these girls who are trying to learn and play a game, and have fun, should have umpires who may not know it 'all' but take pride in umpiring.

 

:rantoff:  

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I wish I had a moving story as to why. 

Here's my why:  I umpire LL Softball  :fuel: .  IMHO the girls playing the game deserve much umpires that what they have had. Simple as that. 

 

:ranton:

Case in point; last night at my daughters Jr Division game.  BU looks good; uniform, creased slacks, cap etc. No problem with this umpire.

PU ump shows up a few minutes late and in sweat pants and a t-shirt.  She has no idea of the rule book i.e. dropped K3, slide or avoid rule, ball hits dirt then hits batter....you guessed it no HBP.  Basic LL rule book mythology applied in many situations.  This wasn't a volunteer, she was compensated to do this job. 

 

Yes, it is LL. Yes, it is daddy-ball.

But these girls who are trying to learn and play a game, and have fun, should have umpires who may not know it 'all' but take pride in umpiring.

 

:rantoff:  

Outstanding!

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I grew up on Army bases and started playing baseball at eight . My dad was league president and also UIC where ever we lived . He was a big guy and also a Major then Lt. Col. so he didn't get many arguments . When we moved to FL my soph. yr. my high school had no baseball field .He went out got donations and had a field built without the school spending a dime . My dad died my junior yr., but I kept playing ball through JC. I coached both of my kids until they were 17 and got away from baseball for a few years . An umpire friend talked me into giving it a try and I fell in love with the game again . I do it for the love of the game and to honor my dad , my hero .

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There's hope for you yet, Jocko.

I do like the National Anthem, though, but only when it's done live, by a student (preferably a cute girl).

And I'm TOTALLY down with Jack and Rose drowning. THE most insufferable movie evah.

 

 

 Who the hell are Jack and Rose ?

 

 

You never saw "Titanic"?  Good for you!

 

Spoiler: The ship sinks.

 

 

Whaaaaa?  Well, $%#& - there's ANOTHER movie to take off my Netflix queue!  Way to ruin it, cyclone!

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