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jkumpire Sat Apr 17, 2010 03:43pm

Handling a Situation, looking for advice
 
Was doing a college game recently.

Had a play at 3B on a sacrifice attempt, called the runner safe since he beat a bad throw and bad tag. Not a hard call.

Manager of the defense comes out and has quiet chat with me about "how the ball got there first" (not hardly), "how did I miss the tag" (tagged him on the upper thigh when his foot is on the bag, sir). then, the old canard, "your partner at home had a better angle, ask him" (no sir, that's my call all the way, I had the angle and he's safe). He says "you missed it" and heads to the dugout.

Next inning, after his team ties it up, lead off man for the home side doubles. Next batter flies to LF, where I line it up, see R2 start off the bag, then returns, and tags. Visitors appeal, it's denied, and here comes the manager again.

"He left too soon. didn't you see that?", in a calm voice.

"No sir, I had it lined up perfectly, he didn't leave too soon." Pot inside is starting to boil.

"He didn't put his foot on the bag."

"YES HE DID (name), and I am tired of you coming out on every play you don't like." (Sentence spoken in strong voice, not anywhere close to a yell.

Of course he starts pacing and complains about my yelling first, and I apologize for yelling. Then he leaves after another point about my yelling.

He was right, of course, I should not have yelled at him first. But this is twice in two innings on non-controversial calls he and his players didn't like. Maybe he thought he was sticking up for his players, but starting a discussion on an appealed tag up?

Should I have dumped him, even with his fairly quiet voice?
What should I say to the man when I see him again (and I will)?
Should I be upset at myself for raising my voice first? I don;t normally do it first, but I was pretty hot about him even coming out on the dugout on the play.

Opinions appreciated.

jicecone Sat Apr 17, 2010 04:27pm

Your taking this crap way too seriously. The coach has you right where he wants you, he knows that just by coming out your already on the defensive side and he is working you. Don't take the fact that they are going to try an question a call as a personal thing against you. He is trying to make you think about every call you make against him and eventually your going to blow it.

Stick to your guns and don't let him rile you.

"Coach , I lined up the catch and tag and I am totally 100% confident I made the right call."

Reply "BLah blah blah.

Thank you coach, you entiltled to your opinion.

Blah, blah blah.

"Ok coach were moving with the game, Thank you" and start to walk away.

If he continues tell him that you have heard enough, discussion is over and keep walking. If he follows and keeps it going , juat say goodnight and get on with the game. Keep your feelings in check and your opinion to yourself and throw the ******* out after you have given him the rope to hang hisself with.

Diplomatically of course. :):):):)

Lawrence.Dorsey Sat Apr 17, 2010 05:49pm

John,

I think you should let it go and this is coming from a guy that holds on to stuff way to long. I had a HS game early in the season where the home team wanted to appeal that a 1B had pulled his foot on a play while I was in the C position. The HC was coaching 3rd and hollered "Get some help, can't we get some help". Well the Asst at 1B was asking for help also and I told him "No, I had him on the bag". HC didn't hear this I guess. After the game I passed him and said "Terry, if you want to talk call time and come over to me, don't holler at me". He replied " I wasn't hollering at you, you just kept walking away and I thought you were ignoring me". He then left me standing there and headed for the handshake line. I felt like a dope because that wasn't the ending I was trying to have. He is a good guy to deal with and for the most part lets the umpires work. I was really worried he was going to hold it against me the next time he saw me. He has been cordial like always and we haven't had a problem so far. He let it go (probably forgot about it) and so have I.

As a funny aside on a tag up appeal at 2nd, I called R2 out for leaving early in a Legion playoff game a few years back. I lined it up and he definitely left early. The head coach told me when he came out to argue "This is Legion...They don't leave early in Legion". I replied "Matt, they leave early in the big leagues!". He turned and walked away..

Lawrence

jkumpire Sun Apr 18, 2010 06:51am

Thanks for the information
 
I appreciate the comments!

I had it in the back of my mind he was trying to work me, which is why I did consider ejecting him at the time. The whole point of the matter is that in the two games I have him this year he has been out on me 4 times, with a quiet manner, but it is over simple stuff he disagreed with, like a runner running out his baseline, or why my partner didn't throw someone out, etc.

I just got tired of the act, when he's the only guy who has come out on me all year. I'm not just missing calls in his games to cheat him.

Will try and forget it, and move on.

KJUmp Sun Apr 18, 2010 07:17am

JK
Your OP stated that this happened in a college game. Assuming that it was an NCAA DI,II,or III game, the CCA manual has pretty specific language and provides clear direction as to how to handle coaches when they question/challenge our calls.
Their approach along with the advice passed on to you by jicerone in his reply should give you a pretty good foundation on how to react to and deal with coaches at that level.
A couple of thoughts I read that I try to always keep in mind:
"Knowing how to work with players and coaches is just as important as knowing the rules and knowing the mechanics."
"Handling arguments starts with handling yourself."

mbyron Sun Apr 18, 2010 09:06am

Quote:

Originally Posted by jkumpire (Post 674138)
I appreciate the comments!

I had it in the back of my mind he was trying to work me, which is why I did consider ejecting him at the time. The whole point of the matter is that in the two games I have him this year he has been out on me 4 times, with a quiet manner, but it is over simple stuff he disagreed with, like a runner running out his baseline, or why my partner didn't throw someone out, etc.

I just got tired of the act, when he's the only guy who has come out on me all year. I'm not just missing calls in his games to cheat him.

Will try and forget it, and move on.

JK, as you know, working you is not illegal. And it can succeed only with your cooperation and complicity.

It sounds like you handled it correctly until you let him "get to" you. When he asks a question, answer it calmly, as you did. If he persists or repeats himself, tell him that you've answered his questions and now it's time to play ball.

Rather than raise your voice ("YES HE DID" -- you're now arguing with him, which is a loss of control), simply tell the coach, "In my judgment, the runner did not leave early. Now let's play ball." This statement keeps control, since your judgment is the only one that counts, and there's no arguing with it.

He'll try to get the last word in. Let him have it: he's leaving the field and you win by going on with the game. The "last word" means nothing unless you invest it with meaning, in which case he wins. Of course, if the last word is obviously over the line, he has to go; but otherwise, who cares?

UmpJM Sun Apr 18, 2010 07:37pm

jkumpire,

I myself am fairly new to calling college games, and am so far only doing "lower level" games - DIII JV & JUCO.

There may be an element of paranoia on my part, but my perception is that the college coaches are more prone to "test" someone they haven't seen.

So, they come out on some trivial play that you got right, but was "kinda' close". They want to see if you get flustered. They want to see if they can get you to go to your partner when there's no reason to. That way they'll be better prepared to challenge you should an IMPORTANT close play occur subsequently.

Just be confident and concise.

Were it to happen a second time in a game, I'd be inclined to ask the coach what he was doing.

JM

jkumpire Tue Apr 20, 2010 08:44pm

Thanks again men
 
The points made are very obvious, and I appreciate them.

The point of the matter is that I was mad, and I let my temper get the best of me. It should have never happened, and that is really discouraging, because I know better. I should have either quietly dumped him, or disengaged as fast as I could and let him decide if he wanted dumped. Instead I yelled first.

Oh well, he's only the second guy that has come out on me in 30 college games or so, so it's time to learn and move on. Now, if I can just let it go, I'll be okay.

umpire99 Wed Apr 28, 2010 08:48am

Dump Him
 
What I do in situations like this is dump the coach the first time he questions me. That way he will know that I am not taking any of his crap in the future. This works for me.

cviverito Wed Apr 28, 2010 10:00am

Quote:

Originally Posted by umpire99 (Post 675078)
What I do in situations like this is dump the coach the first time he questions me. That way he will know that I am not taking any of his crap in the future. This works for me.

This may work for you. I don't think I agree that it is the correct thing to do. Questioning close plays are part of the game.

I let them ask. I explain what I had. Then I let them reply. If they disagree with me I say just that. "agree to disagree". If they ask another question I listen. If it's a sensible question I answer that. If it's the same question worded differently I tell them I've already answered that and it's time to move on. Chances are they are not getting a third question. If the persist I warn them that we are done. If they continue...they get the heave-ho.

But honestly...that RARELY happens. In most cases the coach disagrees and starts putting on a show and sputtering insults. In those situations they get tossed right after the insult or whatever it is that is out of line.

Had my first of the year last week. Had the conversation as described above until he shouted "this game is no longer about the players, it's about YOU!". One step over the line sweet Jesus.

But the UmpJM's point - some coaches will test you when they see you for the first time. Handle them professionally and without emotion and you should come out of it feeling pretty good about the end result...whatever it is. And you will be respected for it too.

ozzy6900 Wed Apr 28, 2010 10:21am

Personally, I think that you need to realize that you are not doing "kiddie ball" anymore. This is college ball so simply, answer the first couple of questions then tell the "kiddie ball" coach "Okay Bill, it's time to get back to the game.", turn and walk away. The next time he approaches for a piddly complaint, hold up the stop sign and don't allow it.

He played you very well because he saw that you didn't have the gonads to stop him. I know that the NCAA is becoming little girls with all of their "let's huddle", "let's get the call right", "let's hold hands and talk" BS. Stand on your two feet and umpire.

Don't forget to take 2 TUMS and call me in the morning! :D

jkumpire Wed Apr 28, 2010 10:59am

Ozzy, If only life was so easy
 
Ozzy,

You better than that to come up with the "kiddy ball" statement. I'm not going to get into a resume comparing contest with you, but I know how to handle situations, and in this one I made a mistake.

Thanks for your opinion.

biggravy Wed Apr 28, 2010 12:00pm

JK you might wanna read that one again. It didn't seem to me he meant anything bad about you with the kiddie ball comment. Seemed he was more referencing the coach. IMO.

PeteBooth Wed Apr 28, 2010 02:49pm

[QUOTE=jkumpire;674078]
Quote:

Was doing a college game recently.

Had a play at 3B on a sacrifice attempt, called the runner safe since he beat a bad throw and bad tag. Not a hard call.

Manager of the defense comes out and has quiet chat with me about "how the ball got there first" (not hardly), "how did I miss the tag" (tagged him on the upper thigh when his foot is on the bag, sir). then, the old canard, "your partner at home had a better angle, ask him" (no sir, that's my call all the way, I had the angle and he's safe). He says "you missed it" and heads to the dugout.

Next inning, after his team ties it up, lead off man for the home side doubles. Next batter flies to LF, where I line it up, see R2 start off the bag, then returns, and tags. Visitors appeal, it's denied, and here comes the manager again.

"He left too soon. didn't you see that?", in a calm voice.

"No sir, I had it lined up perfectly, he didn't leave too soon." Pot inside is starting to boil.

"He didn't put his foot on the bag."

"YES HE DID (name), and I am tired of you coming out on every play you don't like." (Sentence spoken in strong voice, not anywhere close to a yell.

Of course he starts pacing and complains about my yelling first, and I apologize for yelling. Then he leaves after another point about my yelling.
As others said this coach was trying to "play you" He didn\'t do anything to get dumped BUT succeeded in his \'ajenda"

Your OP happens in HS varsity baseball as well ESPECIALLY if it\'s your first year after getting promoted.

The coaches will "test" you.

As you say the calls you made were "no brainers" and the coach KNEW it.

In all liklihood he wanted to see "how far" he could go and ALSO try and get a call "his way" in the future.

In happens in basketball / football many times.

It\'s akin to when we played. If we allowed a player to "get under our skin" he had us.

Hey your OP is familiar and we get those days where we simply do not want to hear it BUT we are officials and have to do our best to over-come these things.

Pete Booth

PeteBooth Wed Apr 28, 2010 02:52pm

[QUOTE=umpire99;675078]
Quote:

What I do in situations like this is dump the coach the first time he questions me. That way he will know that I am not taking any of his crap in the future. This works for me.[/
QUOTE]

Exactly what did the coach DO to get dumped?

This is a College game so the coach better do more then simply question us.

Now if the coach said Hey JK get your head out of your you know what that was the worst fu****g call that I have seen all year is quite a different matter.

Pete Booth


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