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Old Wed Aug 14, 2013, 11:48am
shagpal shagpal is offline
Official Forum Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 372
Its good that you care.

I still don't care.

Originally Posted by KJUmp View Post
Slow down there partner. Who cares? I care.

I don't know how many of us (in addition to Irish) here on the Forum go back to the days of Tom Mason, but I do. Having had the opportunity early in my career to attend several of Mason's regional clinics; Tom's simplistic, direct, no nonsense style of presentation allowed me to start understanding the rules and how to apply them as opposed to just memorizing them. There's 'stuff' from Tom's clinics in the 70's that I still remember and utilize today. I guess it can be said that Tom Mason pretty much created the model for umpire clinics and schools.

Henry Pollard, only met (and umpired for) Henry once. To this day the best UIC I ever worked for. Aside from his knowledge and understanding of how the game should be umpired, he was the first guy (beyond my local area) who recognized something in my umpiring ability. Having Henry take me aside and explain to me the umpiring 'road map' gave me the confidence to know that by continuing to work hard at my game I had (IHO) the ability to become a real good umpire.

Merle Butler, I have in my files copies of many of Merle's articles on umpiring and still refer to them at the start of each season. Excellent teacher and writer.....much like EA.
While I regret that I've only attended one ASA Umpire School, the one I did attend (we're talking the early days here) had in addition to Butler who was NUIC, on the staff Bill Humphries and Bernie Prafato.
Again, much like I learned from Mason and Pollard, today I still hear in my head umpiring concepts that these guys taught and talked about at the school.

Where am I going with all this? Whatever kind of umpire I am today, whatever level I'm able to umpire at today, whatever ability I have today to understand the nuances of rules and mechanics and execute them on the field, I owe a huge part of that to three guys you're dismissing with your "who cares who trained you" comment.

AFAIC, when you're talking Mason, Pollard, and Butler; you're talking umpire royalty.