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  #61 (permalink)  
Old Fri May 18, 2012, 08:42pm
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Originally Posted by GROUPthink View Post
Even at the college level (I only work small college), I aggressively call strikes. I work with some umpires who call coffee can-sized zones (pitches outside corner called balls and forget about the ones at the hollow of the knee -- too much work to get those) and those are the 3+ hour games where everyone gets pissy and the gripes start out low with a gradual crescendo.

Do I go into the other batter's box? Hell, no. But a pitch just off the corner is going to be a strike all day. Inside and outside. Both ways. If you bought coaches a beer and asked them about it, they'd tell you they would rather have an umpire call strikes from the first pitch, I'm sure. I know one or two have said that to me away from the field.
You do not have to buy them a beer to figure out that coaches do not want to be out there more than we have to be. As long as you call strikes for both teams I have found that coaches get upset with their players watching close pitches. I have even had coaches say to their batters, "He has been calling strikes all game, swing the damn bat." I have rarely had a coach complain at any college level when I called strikes and I have worked D1 before too. It is when I did not call a strike they get upset (even if it is clearly outside, but that is another issue).

Peace
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  #62 (permalink)  
Old Fri May 18, 2012, 08:49pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GROUPthink View Post
Even at the college level (I only work small college), I aggressively call strikes. I work with some umpires who call coffee can-sized zones (pitches outside corner called balls and forget about the ones at the hollow of the knee -- too much work to get those) and those are the 3+ hour games where everyone gets pissy and the gripes start out low with a gradual crescendo.

Do I go into the other batter's box? Hell, no. But a pitch just off the corner is going to be a strike all day. Inside and outside. Both ways. If you bought coaches a beer and asked them about it, they'd tell you they would rather have an umpire call strikes from the first pitch, I'm sure. I know one or two have said that to me away from the field.
I never pitched any higher than DIII, but I could throw the ball in the strike zone from the time I was 8 years old. On the other hand... I did place it as far out of the zone as the ump would chase.
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  #63 (permalink)  
Old Fri May 18, 2012, 09:29pm
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Originally Posted by JRutledge View Post
You do not have to buy them a beer to figure out that coaches do not want to be out there more than we have to be. As long as you call strikes for both teams I have found that coaches get upset with their players watching close pitches. I have even had coaches say to their batters, "He has been calling strikes all game, swing the damn bat." I have rarely had a coach complain at any college level when I called strikes and I have worked D1 before too. It is when I did not call a strike they get upset (even if it is clearly outside, but that is another issue).

Peace
Actually, most coaches will buy the first round. I always get the second. Baseball people are good people to be around for the most part.

You're dead on about calling strikes, though. Makes me shake my head when umpires have a small zone and both teams complain.
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  #64 (permalink)  
Old Fri May 18, 2012, 10:42pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GROUPthink View Post
Actually, most coaches will buy the first round. I always get the second. Baseball people are good people to be around for the most part.

You're dead on about calling strikes, though. Makes me shake my head when umpires have a small zone and both teams complain.
I've never had a beer with a coach, but there are a few I would like to have one with. Then bust the freakin' bottle over their head.
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  #65 (permalink)  
Old Fri May 18, 2012, 10:56pm
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Originally Posted by Steven Tyler View Post
I've never had a beer with a coach, but there are a few I would like to have one with. Then bust the freakin' bottle over their head.
Lmao

You caught me by surprise on that one!

Thanks, I needed a good laugh.
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  #66 (permalink)  
Old Sat May 19, 2012, 02:07am
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Originally Posted by MrUmpire View Post
Oh, I'm sorry. Does that post cancel out his justifying the act in post 1? Or, 9, 20 or ..........or........
Never once justified the act. Pointed it out in OP. Not once did I say that Miller deserved getting a helmet fired at his feet. I did say that it would not constitute a felony, by any stretch of the imagination. I also said in post 1 that he COULD have gotten kicked in the nads, not that he SHOULD have. Gotta read with what is known as discernment. I think Lawrie deserved his suspension, at the very least. But don't try to sell it that Miller didn't instigate it, because that's just BS.
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  #67 (permalink)  
Old Sun May 20, 2012, 12:40pm
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Originally Posted by DRJ1960 View Post
I never pitched any higher than DIII, but I could throw the ball in the strike zone from the time I was 8 years old. On the other hand... I did place it as far out of the zone as the ump would chase.
Absolutely.

I do not care how long my games take. If I did, I would officiate games which are timed. Do some coaches b!tch about my zone? Sure. Usually the ones with pitchers who can't throw strikes. I get at least two games a year in which my strike zone improves radically mid-game--right after a pitching change is made.

At the HS varsity and above, I make them hit the plate. My vertical zone is bigger than most because I DO call the hollow below the knee, and I DO call top of the abdomen.

Many batters work hard to develop a discriminating eye at the plate. They don't deserve to be screwed because pitchers can't throw strikes and umpires see a quick game as some sort of faux badge of honor.

My goal every game is to be neither aggressive nor passive in calling strikes. Contrary to what they teach at clinics at every level, I've never bought into the philosophy that coming up with the right arm on close pitches out of the zone is something to be proud of.
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  #68 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 21, 2012, 07:56am
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I think it's time that MLB starts suspending umpires for this type of behavior. If they don't recognize "intent" for a thrown helmet, they shouldn't recognize "intent" for obvious vendeta calls like this!
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  #69 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 21, 2012, 09:09am
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Originally Posted by blueump View Post
I think it's time that MLB starts suspending umpires for this type of behavior. If they don't recognize "intent" for a thrown helmet, they shouldn't recognize "intent" for obvious vendeta calls like this!
How exactly is this obvious? The pitch *just missed* the book strike zone.
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  #70 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 21, 2012, 02:16pm
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Originally Posted by GROUPthink View Post
How exactly is this obvious? The pitch *just missed* the book strike zone.
Like has already been stated by someone else, he would have called that pitch a strike no matter where it was if it didn't bounce up there. It was pretty clear he was sending a message to the rookie, "Here's what you get for showing me up." It was an FU call any way you slice it.
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  #71 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 21, 2012, 02:21pm
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Originally Posted by SanDiegoSteve View Post
Like has already been stated by someone else, he would have called that pitch a strike no matter where it was if it didn't bounce up there. It was pretty clear he was sending a message to the rookie, "Here's what you get for showing me up." It was an FU call any way you slice it.
I think there's no question this was an FU call... but I think GT's comment is valid if only in the sense that it would be wrong for MLB to suspend or otherwise penalize an umpire on this particular FU call, given that the ball was damn close to a book-strike.

Question ... I think most pitchers would be expecting the FU call on this pitch --- anyone else think he threw it too close to the zone?
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  #72 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 21, 2012, 02:25pm
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Originally Posted by SanDiegoSteve View Post
Like has already been stated by someone else, he would have called that pitch a strike no matter where it was if it didn't bounce up there. It was pretty clear he was sending a message to the rookie, "Here's what you get for showing me up." It was an FU call any way you slice it.
Swing the damn bat and you will not have to worry about an FU call. The last damn pitch was right there. We only are saying anything about this really is because there is some "evidence" (and I use that loosely) of where the pitch was by some computer generated system. I thought when I saw the pitch that is one you have to swing at if you do not want to be called out. And a rookie needs to learn that lesson if not for this situation, but other situations. You cannot watch a close pitch and hope you will not get struck out. You have to fight off pitches until you get the one you want or you can handle.

Peace
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  #73 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 21, 2012, 02:36pm
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Originally Posted by JRutledge View Post
Swing the damn bat and you will not have to worry about an FU call. The last damn pitch was right there. We only are saying anything about this really is because there is some "evidence" (and I use that loosely) of where the pitch was by some computer generated system. I thought when I saw the pitch that is one you have to swing at if you do not want to be called out. And a rookie needs to learn that lesson if not for this situation, but other situations. You cannot watch a close pitch and hope you will not get struck out. You have to fight off pitches until you get the one you want or you can handle.

Peace
I've never intentionally called that pitch a strike at any level above Jr./Sr. Little League. Not even in Frosh or JV would I call a pitch that high in the zone a strike. I guess it's all that good old NL training, but I've always favored the low pitch. This one looked to be letter high, which is where the vertical limit used to be, but is no longer. The mid-point between the belt and the letters is a good 3 or 4 inches lower than this pitch. I stand by my comment that Miller would have called a strike even if it were higher than the one he called.
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  #74 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 21, 2012, 03:08pm
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Originally Posted by SanDiegoSteve View Post
I've never intentionally called that pitch a strike at any level above Jr./Sr. Little League. Not even in Frosh or JV would I call a pitch that high in the zone a strike. I guess it's all that good old NL training, but I've always favored the low pitch. This one looked to be letter high, which is where the vertical limit used to be, but is no longer. The mid-point between the belt and the letters is a good 3 or 4 inches lower than this pitch. I stand by my comment that Miller would have called a strike even if it were higher than the one he called.
As I said before, I call close pitches a strike anytime I can at any level. I just try to be consistent with them. Unlike the MLBers I do not have a computer telling me I am right or wrong. I want batters to swing and if a batter did what this guy did, I would have called a close pitch a strike too. Not so much of an FU pitch, but at least stay there for me to make the call. I would do the same if a batter bails out on a pitch that clearly is close. It would not be so much of an FU call, but you should not be assuming I am going to call a ball when it is close. Swing the damn bat and you will not have to worry about what I call.

Peace
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