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Old Wed Apr 11, 2001, 10:36pm
Official Forum Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 14,565
Yep, know the feeling and the bigger the game the better.

You come off the field with some of that adreneline still flowing, congratulate your partners for a job well done and find a place to sit down and relax.

My best experience came in 1999 ASA Men's Major Church National Championship final game. The wrong team was winning for the first 3 innings. My fellow Delawarean umpire (who was on 3rd) had an 11 inning game the night before with something like a 41-39 final score.

About the 5th inning, the hosts put some worchestershire-marinated steaks on the grill that you could smell all over Northern Mobile, Alabama. The game included a couple of bang-bangers and only a couple of head-game type of manuevers, but the game went relatively well.

When the last out occured at 1st base, I motioned to my base umpires to head toward the gate on the left side. We all shook each other's hand with a couple of high-fives in there.

After leaving the field, we had about a 100 yard walk. When we reached the umpire's room (base of water tower), we all went in, grabbed our beverage of choice and sat down. It took about 4-5 minutes to calm down, but when I did, the feeling of relief was enormous. The door was left open and we did have a summer's evening breeze blowing into our area and it was so relaxing. Even with the aroma of the grilling steaks flowing past our noses, we all just sat there and enjoyed the moment of knowing we all just worked a helluva good game which provided ASA softball with a national champion.

To top that off, the next day my traveling partner and I played tourist, sightseeing on the battleship, USS Alabama. While roaming around there, we were both recognized and thanked by players for working the tournament. The kicker was that they were from the losing team!

At times it was a blur, but I have never had such a gratifying weekend in my life.

The bat issue in softball is as much about liability, insurance and litigation as it is about competition, inflated egos and softball.
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