Jump to content

I need to testify........


Recommended Posts

In today's fairly quiet varsity game I had a minor disagreement with the DHC that helps emphasize how important on field communication is and that sometimes we can fail to do the little things that really good umpiring contains.

Top 5, home team up 7-1. R1, 2 outs and 2 strikes on the batter.

F1 throws a 60 foot breaking ball that the batter attempts to check his swing on. He does not. I clearly see the swing, the pitch bounce, and hear the ball skip into F2's glove. F2 had dropped to block the pitch and I pointed at the batter with my left hand and told everyone that, "Yes he did!". I then clearly signaled but did not verbalize that there was no catch on the pitch and F2 lobbed the ball back to the mound thinking the inning was over.

The batter ran to first and the defense flubbed the play, resulting in R1 and R2 with 2 outs rather than the inning being over. The DHC came out to me and we had a conversation about me not giving F2 any indication that the pitch had not been cleanly caught. He had no disagreement with the pitch not being caught, but that I never verbalized like I normally would that it was no catch or a catch. I understand that all participants should know the situation and should not necessarily depend on the umpire to tell them the situation, but this tiny mental gaffe on my part could have led to something much bigger. In this case, the next batter rolled into a 4-3 ground out and nothing came of it

Perhaps the check swing combined with the ball breaking sharply may have caused my brain to short circuit momentarily. Perhaps I thought F2 should have known he didn't catch the ball cleanly. It seemed fairly obvious that he hadn't. For whatever reason, my momentary lack of concentration could have created a real sh*tshow in another situation. I can say with some level of certainty that I will likely never do this again.

I hope this helps someone avoid a similar situation.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 23
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

In today's fairly quiet varsity game I had a minor disagreement with the DHC that helps emphasize how important on field communication is and that sometimes we can fail to do the little things that re

After managing all of the personalities we might encounter during a baseball game, the hardest thing an umpire has to do is make a call on something they have never seen...or perhaps haven't seen in a

On this topic of U3K, here’s what I have implemented, and consistently performed for the past six years... from when I participated in a MLBU Day Camp and subsequently relocated here to Phoenix. Every

After managing all of the personalities we might encounter during a baseball game, the hardest thing an umpire has to do is make a call on something they have never seen...or perhaps haven't seen in awhile. We're umpires and we have to be prepared in any situation. I had a catcher's interference earlier this week for the first time in 4 years. The catcher's mitt went sailing which was part of my distraction. Instinctively, I did come up and grab TIME! from pure muscle memory because my eyes, ears and brain processed the sound of the bat hitting the mitt and the mitt coming off but...I got vapor lock from there. Eventually, with bases loaded I saw R3 trotting down to score and awarded the batter his base. I mean...we got the call right but, an evaluator would've deservedly crushed me because I was very late with the base award. It's nothing until we call it...and then there's what I did.

I have really been trying to work on my pre-pitch mental checklist. We can't cover EVERYTHING that might be coming pre-pitch because we'll miss the pitch. And of course the danger is, anything you don't cover pre-pitch could happen and because you didn't have it on your mental checklist, you might miss it.

Sometimes we miss a mechanic, a verbalization, both and or flat out kick a call. We have all been there. An umpire is largely defined by how they react in situations...to include how they recover from a mistake. Did it completely ruin their day/night? Did they continue to make mistakes? Since we know mistakes happen, what techniques does an umpire already have in place to mentally pick themselves up after a mistake? What is their body language and facial expression after a mistake?

Light bulbs burn out at the Ritz-Carlton AND at the Motel6. How is that handled at each hotel?

~Dawg

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn’t beat yourself up over it, the catcher is 99% responsible here from the way you’ve described it. He dropped to block pitch and it clearly skipped, no? Mental error on the catcher. 
 

But, I’ll take this note and learn from it. Does everyone say “no catch” on skips at the plate? I feel like by the time I’m coming up to signal safe, the catcher is reaching to tag the batter. I can’t say I’m consistent saying no catch on a skip. I don’t say anything on a blocked ball that’s somewhere rolling in the dirt after hitting the catcher. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Thatsnotyou said:

I wouldn’t beat yourself up over it, the catcher is 99% responsible here from the way you’ve described it. He dropped to block pitch and it clearly skipped, no? Mental error on the catcher. 
 

But, I’ll take this note and learn from it. Does everyone say “no catch” on skips at the plate? I feel like by the time I’m coming up to signal safe, the catcher is reaching to tag the batter. I can’t say I’m consistent saying no catch on a skip. I don’t say anything on a blocked ball that’s somewhere rolling in the dirt after hitting the catcher. 

I always say it unless there's an immediate play. 

The two people that need to know most, the batter and the catcher, are the only two people on the field not looking in your direction. The verbal is more important than the visual. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/2/2021 at 1:14 AM, Matt said:

I always say it unless there's an immediate play. 

The two people that need to know most, the batter and the catcher, are the only two people on the field not looking in your direction. The verbal is more important than the visual. 

I agree with this

Link to post
Share on other sites
19 minutes ago, ArchAngel72 said:

I thought the fist/hand out to the side was a clear and proper signal?

 

I do not believe we were told any verbal component of the call.

 

 

imo, you were told (or more accurately not told) incorrectly.

Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, ArchAngel72 said:

I thought the fist/hand out to the side was a clear and proper signal?

 

I do not believe we were told any verbal component of the call.

 

 

Clear and proper signal for what?  
 

Told/Not told by whom?

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

LL mechanic

 

The “Uncaught Third Strike” Mechanic is used when the batter becomes a runner due to the third strike not being caught with two outs or first base unoccupied. If you have not watched the “Safe” and “Out” Mechanic videos, you may want to do so prior to watching this video. The “Uncaught Third Strike” Mechanic is used by the Plate Umpire. In this video, we will break down the “Uncaught Third Strike” Mechanic.

1)On a pitch that is strike three and is determined to have not been caught, the signal used to indicate the third strike is by pointing with the right hand and arm out to the side using no voice. Using this signal mitigates any confusion that could occur from players misconstruing the standard strike mechanic as being an “out” call. At that point, four possibilities could occur.

2)If the ball gets away from the catcher and it is obvious to everyone that the pitch was not caught, no additional action is needed.

3)If the pitch is short-hopped by the catcher, and the batter-runner attempts to advance with no tag attempt, use the “Safe” mechanic and verbalize, “no catch”.

4)If the batter-runner attempts to advance and a tag attempt misses, use the “Safe” mechanic and verbalize, “no tag”.

5)If the batter-runner is tagged immediately, use the “out” mechanic.

 

 

So here what I was instructed from LL class in Bristol was 1 and 2.  We never were at that point to the best of my recollection informed about 3.  4, and 5 are no brainers and not really part of this mechanic to me as they are another actual call. Tag out or missed tag.

Link to post
Share on other sites

What I find kind of amusing is LL teaches the fist strike but then says to point on strike 3.  Are you allowed to "punch" them out if non swinging? :HS:sarcasm:

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, Tborze said:

What I find kind of amusing is LL teaches the fist strike but then says to point on strike 3.  Are you allowed to "punch" them out if non swinging? :HS:sarcasm:

 

What?  Did you read the thread or my post or the 2nd 3rd and 4th post in the thread which my response was actually too?

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
52 minutes ago, Tborze said:

What I find kind of amusing is LL teaches the fist strike but then says to point on strike 3.  Are you allowed to "punch" them out if non swinging? :HS:sarcasm:

 

i think the right arm point is only for an uncaught third strike. Probably adopted from the same MLB mechanic.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ArchAngel72 said:

What?  Did you read the thread or my post or the 2nd 3rd and 4th post in the thread which my response was actually too?

 

I thought we were talking FED mechanics.  FED had a DDB signal years back to which I thought you were referring. Sry.  Then I noticed the LL mechanics memo you posted.  But, is it a separate mechanic or is it just a pointing strike mechanic on a U3K?

@Jimurray also

Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting. The mechanic I learned was just to step to the right and towards 1st with a big horizontal point towards 1st (great position to see a tag on the back of the BR), but I was not taught to necessarily verbalize.  Although, the verbal I have used is, "Play it!"  Everyone understands what that means. But also guaranteed that once I step out to the right parallel with the 1st baseline and point, the Offensive coaches and dugout are all screaming to "Run!" (great verbal understood by the vast majority of batters--but not all LoL). And their combined voices are always louder than I could ever be.

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Mudisfun said:

Several times I verbalized 'no catch' in HS age games and everyone stopped... all they heard was catch and stopped playing.

Damned if we do...

 

Emphasize the "no." De-emphasize the "catch."  Many times I just said "no" or "no catch; no; no" (on fly balls; there usually isn't time for that on a D3K.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I gotta' say...you put a bunch of umpires in a room (physically or virtually) and ask them about this call and mechanic and you're going to get as many answers as there are umpires. So, what does that tell us? MAKE SURE YOU ARE PRE-GAMING WHAT THE CREW IS DOING ON D3Ks!

On a D3K, my current PU mechanic is the right arm and hand ONLY making the safe motion whilst I verbalize, "No catch! No catch!". On a caught third strike (if Grandma couldn't call it), my current mechanic is an out hammer whilst I verbalize, "That's a catch! That's a catch!"

I had a partner last fall who was an MiLB umpire (with the year off for COVID) who said his D3K mechanic is for the right arm to be extended out to the side, with one finger pointing down (generally downward, not pointing at the ball) whilst verbalizing, "Ball's down! Ball's down!"

One question I have on D3Ks...some of my field partners will give me a closed fist down at their waist for a caught 3K or an open hand down at their waist for a D3K. Again, this is pre-gamed. Is this an acceptable mechanic or too crutchy? It's PU's call and sometimes PU is screened on the low pitches.

~Dawg

Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, SeeingEyeDog said:

One question I have on D3Ks...some of my field partners will give me a closed fist down at their waist for a caught 3K or an open hand down at their waist for a D3K. Again, this is pre-gamed. Is this an acceptable mechanic or too crutchy? It's PU's call and sometimes PU is screened on the low pitches.

~Dawg

Acceptable.

 

Standard around here.

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, SeeingEyeDog said:

I had a partner last fall who was an MiLB umpire (with the year off for COVID) who said his D3K mechanic is for the right arm to be extended out to the side, with one finger pointing down (generally downward, not pointing at the ball) whilst verbalizing, "Ball's down! Ball's down!"

One question I have on D3Ks...some of my field partners will give me a closed fist down at their waist for a caught 3K or an open hand down at their waist for a D3K. Again, this is pre-gamed. Is this an acceptable mechanic or too crutchy? It's PU's call and sometimes PU is screened on the low pitches.

Both of those are verbals/mechanics I use. Every umpire I've worked with in college, even when we're mixing umpires from different areas (like going south for the spring or at clinics) has used the second one.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4/30/2021 at 10:44 PM, Kevin_K said:

Perhaps the check swing combined with the ball breaking sharply may have caused my brain to short circuit momentarily.

I have done this before as well.  The problem with this situation is you first have to verbalize that you are calling it a strike, as you did..."yes he did". Then you have to determine if the ball was caught AND THEN quickly move on to I have no catch. So actually in this situation there is a lot going on.

I think your situation is not on you.  Here the catcher knows if he caught it or not. I feel the verbalization is for the batter, NOT the catcher.  That's on him and not you. "Coach, your catcher doesn't know if he caught the ball or not?"

Link to post
Share on other sites

I try to verbalize if I get the chance.  However if runner breaks right away or catcher goes for an immediate tag not much time to say anything.  Also if to the backstop I tend not to vocalize, why do it when it’s obvious to everyone F2 didn’t catch that.  If the runner doesn’t run on that one, that’s on him.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4/30/2021 at 8:44 PM, Kevin_K said:

that helps emphasize how important on field communication is and that sometimes we can fail to do the little things that really good umpiring contains.

On this topic of U3K, here’s what I have implemented, and consistently performed for the past six years... from when I participated in a MLBU Day Camp and subsequently relocated here to Phoenix. Every catcher older than 12 that I’ve worked with has heard how I call – or more aptly, don’t call – an U3K. 

During warm-up pitches, I say two simple things to the catcher. I don’t say anything about protecting me, or framing, or what kind of pitches the F1 is trying to throw; I was a catcher myself for 16 years, I’ve heard (just about) everything. The first is, “If you’ve got that last strike as a catch, you’ll hear me say ‘Caught!’. If I don’t say anything, then you’ll need to try and retire him, got it?” All those catchers affirm as such, and I’ve never had an incident where a catcher didn’t know what to do, or what the call was. 

The second thing is, “If you want a check-swing appeal, just say so!” Many appreciate this candor, for while most collegiate and pro catchers expect their appeal-to-BU point to be answered, several high-school age catchers remark that there are still HS PUs who are obstinate about appealing to a BU. 

Sure, the mechanics I use are the same as what the schools and camps teach, and what we’ve been discussing here. However, I’ve found it far more effective, natural – and less problematic – to use the vocals I do. Take Kevin’s example... you’re telling me that it’s easier to get out – coherently – both “Yes he did!” and “No catch! No catch”?! Or, if there is a called 3rd strike and F2 fumbles it, to have to truncate your 3rd strike call and launch into “No catch! No catch!” 

Why do we make this so complicated? Keep it simple! 

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, aaluck said:

I have done this before as well.  The problem with this situation is you first have to verbalize that you are calling it a strike, as you did..."yes he did". Then you have to determine if the ball was caught AND THEN quickly move on to I have no catch. So actually in this situation there is a lot going on.

I think your situation is not on you.  Here the catcher knows if he caught it or not. I feel the verbalization is for the batter, NOT the catcher.  That's on him and not you. "Coach, your catcher doesn't know if he caught the ball or not?"

The catcher knows. The question is if you agree, because it's your opinion that counts.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.






×
×
  • Create New...