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Old Mon Nov 21, 2016, 01:52pm
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Location: USA
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Originally Posted by Andy View Post
"The National Tournament umpire staff will participate in the pre-tournament bat check process"
--- Does that mean all umps or just more work for UICs?

The interpretation of this is to be determined. I argued against it. The umpire coordinator needs to solicit local umpire volunteers for this duty. Times often conflict with pre-tournament umpire clinic, I don't think the tournament umpires should be checking and potentially rejecting bats, then have to go on the field with that same team and/or player.
If they are specific to the statement, local umpires not assigned to work the tournament aren't part of the umpire staff.

I suspect that the TD/ASA Rep didn't want to be placed in the position of being the "bad guy" of rejecting a bat, so it gets dumped on the umpire. However, I often ran into non-approved bats in the dugout simply because those testing the bats did just that, and only that. This way the bat can be inspected ahead of time and make the pre-game that much easier.
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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