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Old Fri Jun 27, 2008, 09:30pm
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Should I Stay or Should I go.

Same game as the one I posted about a bit earlier tonight. I showed up at the field at 5:00 for the first game of a double header to start at 5:30. It rained here pretty good through the day that day and the mound and plate area were left uncovered. As my partner and I are walking the field doing our pre-game one of the coaches comes out to us and asks us why we don't have the grounds crew working on the field yet. I just laughed and reminded him that it was his field, not mine, and that we're not responsible for that.


The leagues commissioner shows up at 5:30 and tells us that the grounds crew has four other fields to clean up before they get to the big diamond, and that our games will now start "around" 6:30-6:45. Needless to say, we were pretty peaved at the situation. We were going to leave and let them hang when my partner, who is a young guy, suggests we demand at least an extra games fee for doing the double header so far out of schedule, or we're leaving. Personally, I wanted to leave, but they agreed to pay us an additional half games fee per game. Would you have left?


Tim.
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Old Fri Jun 27, 2008, 09:53pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigUmp56
Would you have left?
Tim
My first impluse would be to leave, but my impatience has always been a character flaw. Understanding the problems with scheduling make-ups, I'd agree to hang around and try not to let anyone see me stepping on my lip.
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Old Fri Jun 27, 2008, 10:13pm
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Thank you!

Tim,

I can understand your frustration, but I think you did the right thing by sticking around. After all, it does not sound like it was the kids' fault that the field didn't get prepped. I would think that your "stock" went up in the minds of a few people, hopefully.

If no one else said it to you, I will: Thanks for sticking around so that the games could get played.

Bob
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Old Fri Jun 27, 2008, 11:58pm
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Uh Tim
I just laughed and reminded him that it was his field, not mine, and that we're not responsible for that.

You aren't responsible for the game time or the decision to start/cancel the game either. Why would you even think it would be OK to just walk away?
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 12:03am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Ives
Uh Tim
I just laughed and reminded him that it was his field, not mine, and that we're not responsible for that.

You aren't responsible for the game time or the decision to start/cancel the game either. Why would you even think it would be OK to just walk away?
Because I'm not contracted to sit there for an undetermined period waiting until they decide whether they're going to play or not. I'm contracted to start at a particular time. If I'm called at home and told that the game is going to start an hour later, I then can accept or decline the game as the terms of my contract have changed. And when I assigned, I told the umpires that they were free to do the same thing.

Technically, the home team controls whether a game starts, however once the lineup cards are exchanged *I* control that, so in fact the umpires are pretty much in control from the start. When a team shows up 30 minutes before a game is scheduled to start instead of arriving earlier (and I'm not talking about the OP's situation, but one where the home team actually controls and maintains the field) and then tells me it's going to take an extra hour to get the field ready, I won't hesitate to decline to stay if I have after-game plans. They are always free to hire another independent contractor to come out and work.

Last edited by Rich; Sat Jun 28, 2008 at 12:05am.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 12:06am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Ives
Uh Tim
I just laughed and reminded him that it was his field, not mine, and that we're not responsible for that.

You aren't responsible for the game time or the decision to start/cancel the game either. Why would you even think it would be OK to just walk away?
Give me the lineup cards, coaches. Thank you. Game canceled due to field conditions. Oh, BTW, you now owe me a full game fee.

Please tell me how I cannot, by rule, do exactly what I just described in the last paragraph. Thank you.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 12:10am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Ives
Uh Tim
I just laughed and reminded him that it was his field, not mine, and that we're not responsible for that.

You aren't responsible for the game time or the decision to start/cancel the game either. Why would you even think it would be OK to just walk away?
Because I belong to an association that contracts with this league. We expect that when we send a set of umpires to work games, the games will start on time and end at a reasonable hour. I stayed only because of the agreement to receive the additional fee. Had I decided to leave I would have been payed for the first game of the set anyway. The problems a league has with it's field crew aren't ours, Rich. The game that was supposed to start at 5:30 took until 9:00 to finish, and the second game didn't get finished until 11:15.


Tim.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 08:11am
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Might have finished earlier if there were lights on the field, 'eh?
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 08:19am
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~Cripes~

Quote:
"You aren't responsible for the game time or the decision to start/cancel the game either. Why would you even think it would be OK to just walk away?"
This ties for the dumbest post ever made on the internet.

This is not a professional league. The umpires are contracted to work a game at "game time" not some "other time in the future".

While all of us would give a limited extension of the game time I would NEVER have waited under these circumstances.

Teams and leagues have responsibilites and I would expect them to have their act together.

Oh yeah, I would also exoect a "show up" fee for my time.

Tim was much nicer than I would have been.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 09:55am
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Originally Posted by RichMSN
Give me the lineup cards, coaches. Thank you. Game canceled due to field conditions. Oh, BTW, you now owe me a full game fee.

Please tell me how I cannot, by rule, do exactly what I just described in the last paragraph. Thank you.

Because you can't order the coaches to give you the lineups until the plate meeting.

As to the rule (What constitutes "previous notice" may or may not be part of your contract - if you have one - with the league.):

4.01
Unless the home club shall have given previous notice that the game has been postponed or will be delayed in starting, the umpire, or umpires, shall enter the playing field five minutes before the hour set for the game to begin and proceed directly to home base where they shall be met by the managers of the opposing teams. In sequence --

(a) First, the home manager shall give his batting order to the umpire-in-chief, in duplicate.

(b) Next, the visiting manager shall give his batting order to the umpire-in-chief, in duplicate.




Given that the "ground crew" at most parks has real jobs they don't get to the field much before you do to assess the conditions and get to work fixing as required, your expectation that things be pristine at game time after a day of rain are out of place - and quite naive.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 09:57am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim C
This ties for the dumbest post ever made on the internet.

This is not a professional league. The umpires are contracted to work a game at "game time" not some "other time in the future".

While all of us would give a limited extension of the game time I would NEVER have waited under these circumstances.

Teams and leagues have responsibilites and I would expect them to have their act together.

Oh yeah, I would also exoect a "show up" fee for my time.

Tim was much nicer than I would have been.
Doesn't matter Tim - you don't do youth games anyhow.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 10:50am
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Originally Posted by Rich Ives
Doesn't matter Tim - you don't do youth games anyhow.
Well I do, Rich and I agree that it was not you most intelligent post! I can understand a minor postponement for many reasons but we have lives too! I've walked away from bad fields, too few players and bad weather conditions more times than I care to remember.

And to address the "at least you stuck around for the kids" BS.... I officiate games for pay! When I officiate a game, I work as a professional not as a Social Worker. I do my job on the field and keep a civil attitude.

That said, I do a certain amount of games "to give back to the kids and the game" each year so I don't really want to hear that "it's for the kids" garbage! If the game time is 17:00 and the grounds crew is not going to be there until 18:00, you can forget having me at that game. And the only exception would be the "freebie" games as for these games, the entire day or evening is set aside to accommodate them because everyone including the grounds crew is volunteering their time. Oh and so far, I have six evening games scheduled in August that are "for the kids". There will be at least four in the Fall.

Sorry for the spouting off, but we are getting back into that touchie-feelie-make everything nice crap again!
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Last edited by ozzy6900; Sat Jun 28, 2008 at 02:26pm.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 01:18pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Ives

Given that the "ground crew" at most parks has real jobs they don't get to the field much before you do to assess the conditions and get to work fixing as required, your expectation that things be pristine at game time after a day of rain are out of place - and quite naive.
This particular league has full time crew of college and high school kids working as the grounds crew. They run games on 10 diamonds seven days a week. This wasn't some podunk league with no grounds crew. They screwed the pooch and left the mound and plate area uncovered. Not my problem.......









Tim.

Last edited by BigUmp56; Sat Jun 28, 2008 at 01:22pm.
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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 03:02pm
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Originally Posted by ozzy6900
If the game time is 17:00 and the grounds crew is not going to be there until 18:00, you can forget having me at that game.
Ozzy's umpiring uniform:

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Old Sat Jun 28, 2008, 03:39pm
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I have no problem with how it was handled. The terms of the contract changed, and they offered additional compensation, which you accepted. Seems fair both ways.
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