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3rd out at 1st base - timing play??

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3 hours ago, Aging_Arbiter said:

Personally, I would relate this to something I find that most of the younger generation has troubles with..............Work Ethic.

It's not "most" and I've encountered many older people with that problem.

 

“Kids” – Written in 1958 -  lyrics by Lee Adams and music by Charles Strouse.

Not much has changed since.

 

Kids!
I don't know what's wrong with these kids today!
Kids!
Who can understand anything they say?
Kids!
They are disobedient, disrespectful oafs!
Noisy, crazy, sloppy, lazy, loafers!
While we're on the subject:
Kids!
You can talk and talk till your face is blue!
Kids!
But they still just do what they want to do!
Why can't they be like we were,
Perfect in every way?
What's the matter with kids today?
Kids!
I've tried to raise you the best I could
Kids!
All the things I've done were for your own good!
Kids!
Can't you once appreciate how I've sacrificed?
Working, slaving, scrimping saving pennies
And living with your father!
Kids!
No one knows the burdens I've had to bear
(And in my condition)
Kids!
I'm a poor sick woman and does he care? (Ha!)
Go on go on and kill me, that's what it's coming to
When a mother has kids like you!
Kids!
All the chicken soup that I've made for you
(Momma take it easy)
Kids!
Now you throw me out like a worn out show
Not in front of everybody Mom
After all I haven't been such an awful son
I never sass you back or leave a ring around the bathtub
And don't I always phone you?
Kids!
You can give your life to them night and day
Kids!
Then they go get married and go away
Married! Who's gettin' married???
Why do we have these children? Better to have a pet
You know where you stand with the pet
I never asked for nothing, nothing is what you'll get
What's the matther with kids to----
I tried Lou but I failed

 

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5 hours ago, Biscuit said:

Never called little league, not sure I ever will. This year I'll start calling FED, but prior to that I've always done modified OBR. Agree with you in principle though.

Do what you want.  For the young/new guys to the art of umpiring, I strongly suggest reading a baseball case book.  This will cover many game situations and explanations what the correct rulings are.  This way, you will at least seen it in print and have a recollection of what the rulings were.  I am not saying it is a must, but a recommended action to get better.  This way you will not have n a$$ of a coach on your case.  Believe me, if the coaches(rats) sense you lack knowledge of the rules and game management, they will take advantage of you / ride you from the start. You are better off being prepared than going in to a game green behind the ears.   The coaches know what they can get away with, stop them before it starts.     

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2 hours ago, MRG9999 said:

Do what you want.  For the young/new guys to the art of umpiring, I strongly suggest reading a baseball case book.  This will cover many game situations and explanations what the correct rulings are.  This way, you will at least seen it in print and have a recollection of what the rulings were.  I am not saying it is a must, but a recommended action to get better.  This way you will not have n a$$ of a coach on your case.  Believe me, if the coaches(rats) sense you lack knowledge of the rules and game management, they will take advantage of you / ride you from the start. You are better off being prepared than going in to a game green behind the ears.   The coaches know what they can get away with, stop them before it starts.     

I think you misunderstood me. I've never called a game that played under LL rules, so I've never had a reason to read that specific set of rules. I've read the OBR rules a number of times. This spring I'll be calling games under FED for the first time, and I'm currently reading through the rule book and case book. I have no intention of going in blind (though I'm sure there'll be growing pains going back and forth from FED and OBR)

4 hours ago, yawetag said:

I'll agree that anything past the rule book has shared responsibility. Every group has their own quirks to mechanics and expected norms. I'll also agree that my approach to learning is different than others, so I don't expect the same level of desire from others that I showed my first years of umpiring baseball (and my first year of refereeing volleyball).

But to not even open a rule book until two full years after starting? That's baffling and absolutely falls on the individual. The rule books are available for free online and less than $10 for the book itself. There is no excuse for someone working the craft for two years and to not even once think "Ya know, I should probably read the rules."

I can't even imagine someone working even one season's worth of games without thinking "I really don't know what to call here" or "Wow, maybe that coach is right." Never a deer-in-the-headlights as they watch a player run into another? Never a ball thrown out of play and the concern of whether they awarded it correctly? A weirdly caught(?) ball? Nothing where the crowd is yelling after you guessed at what the correct call should be in the situation?

Look, I'm not saying my path started well. In fact, I'd say it's about the worst way possible. I got lucky and that's why I'm here. The whole point was that some umpires are put on the field with almost no training or support. 

And look, it's not like I was getting blind sided on the field and just going "huh. I wonder how that should've gone. Oh well!" I would look up situations, I just wasn't very good at it and didn't understand all of the underlying rules. The solution is too read the book. I know that now, I didn't then. I wanted to get better, I just was bad at it and had no one to turn to. (Shout out to umpire bible. May not be the best resource, but without it I don't know I would've ever got to the point that I realized there was another world of umpiring out there.) That be said, the fact that it took me so long to read the book through is bad. No excuses for that, despite the fact that I was put in a bad situation to advance. 

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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.

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From another older guy (me) about the younger generation, this may help us think of them in a different light:

I am a volunteer FF/EMT - I was for a few years Captain of a Rescue Company with 22 paid and 22 volunteer personnel I was responsible for. And I have to tell you that the younger men and women that I am proud to serve with over the last two decades have made myself and all of us proud in their service, dedication, and work ethic for our country and the local citizenry:

Many of these paid and volley people have also served in the military (post 9/11) and have done multiple tours of combat duty overseas. Here are kids who in their late teens through their twenties have dropped everything to join in reaction to 9/11, have sacrificed their 20's fighting a war that is the longest war in US history -  many with more than two tours of duty in Iraq/Afghanistan, and now Syria - then come home, work to get a job while assimilating back to civilian life, and on top of all that, volunteer to risk their lives running into fires for people they don't know.

We have two gentlemen who are now in their late 20's who have just deployed for the FOURTH time, missing this holiday season.

Combine that with the way I see how my own kids ( I have 4, ranging from 28 to 16) work hard to dedicate themselves to their careers and their studies and hobbies, and I tell you that I have full confidence that this country in in good hands with these recent generations... I am constantly impressed by this young generation, and, while I am proud of my career and family accomplishments, I still feel almost inadequate when thinking about what they sacrifice and how they put themselves on the line in combat time and again.. i tell you I trust myself going into a crappy fire with the 20+ year olds as much as do with the "salty" guys... Same feeling on the baseball diamond...

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