Sunday, February 12, 2012

Umpiring Update

Pitchers and Catchers report on 2/19. That is next weekend. Things for me on the umpiring front will pick up now! We have our first clinic on 3/9 and maybe a few more after that. It's always fun to teach coaches and dads the rules of baseball. Most of them have been fans there whole life and watching them get a true understanding of the rules is magical. How much they retain is up to them, but it helps to have 2 hours to teach. They always come up with funny hypothetical questions, most we have heard before.
Every year I tell them the number one thing they need to know is how to appeal a play. Kids miss touching bases every year. 1st base coaches and 3rd base coaches should be watching, but they don't, they watch the ball. Umpires watch the base and the ball. I know if the kid touches 99% of the time if I am doing a game alone, and 100% if 2 man teamed. Umpires are not watching the game for enjoyment, they are watching to enforce the rules.
What are the big things coaches need to know?
  1. Understand the Infield Fly rule. (Ordinary effort is the key to this)
  2. Obstruction rule. Defensive player do it all the time. Teach it.
  3. Interference in all of it's variations.
  4. One Offensive timeout an inning. 
  5. Don't call timeout as you walk onto the field. Wait to be granted.
Now so that we have some rules down, I feel obligated to share an ugly story on baseball umpiring. This is not at the Little League level, it is actually at the Professional level, or at least the want to be professional level. And umpire school in Florida needs to check the calendar and see this is 2012.
read about this disgrace here.  I was flabbergasted at the news. Feel free to comment.


  1. Couldn't access the link, but you DO have a very underappreciated job, thanks for giving your time!

  2. I love the game and I love watching these kids grow!

    Link is fixed. Damn NY Times....