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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 05:02pm
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Balkin' Bob Davidson...

...doesn't look very good out there.

So I'm sitting behind the plate at Comiskey Park last night (I refuse to call it U.S. Cellular Field) watching my White Sox's bullpen collapse against those Damn Yankees, and I happen to get the game where Balkin' Bob is working the dish. No balks called by him, but he sure doesn't look good as a plate umpire, particularly when he's rotating and running here and there without ever taking his mask off.

Nobody on, ball hit to deep left field, U3 went out for the fly, U2 comes in, and Bob rotates to third to take a possible batter-runner there. Bob's got his mask on the entire time. Never did he take it off, even when the batter stopped at second and Bob trotted back to the dish.

Nobody on, nobody out, ball hit to right field with U1 going out. Bob comes up the line to cover first base. Again, his mask is on the entire time, even as he trots back to first base. On ground balls when he ran up the first base line in foul territory trailing, his mask was on all the time.

I think the only time I saw him take his mask off is when he tossed AJ Pierzynski in the 8th inning after AJ struck out.

OK, there's my mild b*tch for the day.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 05:10pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UMP25
...doesn't look very good out there.

So I'm sitting behind the plate at Comiskey Park last night (I refuse to call it U.S. Cellular Field) watching my White Sox's bullpen collapse against those Damn Yankees, and I happen to get the game where Balkin' Bob is working the dish. No balks called by him, but he sure doesn't look good as a plate umpire, particularly when he's rotating and running here and there without ever taking his mask off.

Nobody on, ball hit to deep left field, U3 went out for the fly, U2 comes in, and Bob rotates to third to take a possible batter-runner there. Bob's got his mask on the entire time. Never did he take it off, even when the batter stopped at second and Bob trotted back to the dish.

Nobody on, nobody out, ball hit to right field with U1 going out. Bob comes up the line to cover first base. Again, his mask is on the entire time, even as he trots back to first base. On ground balls when he ran up the first base line in foul territory trailing, his mask was on all the time.

I think the only time I saw him take his mask off is when he tossed AJ Pierzynski in the 8th inning after AJ struck out.

OK, there's my mild b*tch for the day.
If we step away from "how we do things" and "how we train umpires" and look at the plays themselves, how does removing the mask help Davidson?

I've always thought removing the mask or the helmet was overrated.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 05:11pm
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You've got to be kidding.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 05:16pm
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Originally Posted by UMP25
You've got to be kidding.
Nope. It's for show. Unless there's an imminent play, it's for show.

You are the only one at the park bothered by Davidson not removing his mask. Unless there's another anal umpire type there, of course.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 05:25pm
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I always felt it was much easier to run quickly without the mask on, so I remove it as soon as possible after the ball is hit or some kind of play happens. I think it looks queer to be running all over the place with a mask/helmet bobbing up and down, when its only purpose is to protect your face from pitched balls. Why would one want to leave it on, Rich?

I'm far from anal, but I would rate Davidson down for running with his mask just as Randy did.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 05:25pm
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Originally Posted by Rich Fronheiser
Nope. It's for show. Unless there's an imminent play, it's for show.

You are the only one at the park bothered by Davidson not removing his mask. Unless there's another anal umpire type there, of course.
I disagree. I know of coaches who consider taking the mask off as an element of hustle and being focused and who feel free to comment when they don't see it.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 05:30pm
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Originally Posted by GarthB
I disagree. I know of coaches who consider taking the mask off as an element of hustle and being focused and who feel free to comment when they don't see it.
I'm just questioning the practice like any good student would. Mine comes off all the time. It's habit, though, nothing more.

Breaking in a new mask tomorrow, matter of fact.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 07:51pm
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UMP25 - Hope you stayed out of the wind!

I watched the game on TV, and I saw some of the things you are talking about. Of course TV doesn't show you umpires rotating. It was also really windy and he was constantly holding down his throat protector to his chest. Looked really bad.

A couple more comments on the game.

On the A-Rod play at 2nd (where he was called out by a traling U1). Can you explain to me how U1 was so far out of postion? It took him as long to run 75 feet as it took A-Rod to jog 90 and sprint 90. And he was on the outside, the play did not unfold in front of him. He got the call wrong, mainly I feel, because this lack of concentation (from the replays he did bust his butt to get to 2nd, but I don't understand WHY he was so late.
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Old Fri Jun 08, 2007, 11:14pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Fronheiser
If we step away from "how we do things" and "how we train umpires" and look at the plays themselves, how does removing the mask help Davidson?

I've always thought removing the mask or the helmet was overrated.
I agree with Rich. Often times I leave the mask on as I move about.

No sense in taking it off until I need to.

Thanks
David
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Old Sat Jun 09, 2007, 01:14am
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Originally Posted by David B
I agree with Rich. Often times I leave the mask on as I move about.

No sense in taking it off until I need to.

Thanks
David
I put this in the same category as a proper and clean and pressed uniform and shined shoes. I could do the same job in jeans and a tee shirt with my shinguards on the outside.

There are some things we do for the perception they create and the benefits they provide. Looking professional and focused on the game is important to the teams, coaches and fans, thus important to the Game.
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Old Sat Jun 09, 2007, 07:12am
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Originally Posted by GarthB
I put this in the same category as a proper and clean and pressed uniform and shined shoes. I could do the same job in jeans and a tee shirt with my shinguards on the outside.

There are some things we do for the perception they create and the benefits they provide. Looking professional and focused on the game is important to the teams, coaches and fans, thus important to the Game.
Why does it look more professional, though? Why is it the norm to take it off when everyone in the park is focused on the ball, not the umpire?
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Old Sat Jun 09, 2007, 08:39am
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Originally Posted by TussAgee11
A couple more comments on the game.

On the A-Rod play at 2nd (where he was called out by a traling U1). Can you explain to me how U1 was so far out of postion? It took him as long to run 75 feet as it took A-Rod to jog 90 and sprint 90. And he was on the outside, the play did not unfold in front of him. He got the call wrong, mainly I feel, because this lack of concentation (from the replays he did bust his butt to get to 2nd, but I don't understand WHY he was so late.
Wrong game. That was the previous night, Wednesday.
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Old Sat Jun 09, 2007, 08:43am
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Originally Posted by Rich Fronheiser
...everyone in the park is focused on the ball, not the umpire?
You show me an umpire who goes to a MLB game and doesn't often pay attention to the umpires. Admit it. We ALL do it. Sure, I'm there for the game and the hope my struggling White Sox will actually win a game, but every umpire I know is lying if they say never notice what MLB umpires do.
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Old Sat Jun 09, 2007, 02:59pm
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Originally Posted by UMP25
You show me an umpire who goes to a MLB game and doesn't often pay attention to the umpires. Admit it. We ALL do it. Sure, I'm there for the game and the hope my struggling White Sox will actually win a game, but every umpire I know is lying if they say never notice what MLB umpires do.
You misunderstand -- I was referring to all the NON-umpires. I take it as assumed that all umpires are watching the umpires.

I learn from the ML umpires -- the latest knowledge is how U2's moved to taking plays from the outside at second base when the runner tries to stretch a single into a double. Great stuff, if you ask me.
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Old Sat Jun 09, 2007, 07:03pm
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Originally Posted by Rich Fronheiser
Why does it look more professional, though? Why is it the norm to take it off when everyone in the park is focused on the ball, not the umpire?
Read the whole sentence: "Looking professional and focused on the game is important to the teams, coaches and fans, thus important to the Game."

Why does it look better? Simple...compare an umpire moving toward a play with his mask on with one who has taken his off and is holding it in his as he moves. Which umpire, to the untrained eye, looks more focused on the action?
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