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Old Fri May 26, 2017, 07:28pm
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Fort Myers FL
Posts: 600
knowing when to hang 'em up

I've umpired on and off (mostly on) since 1958 when I called college fraternity intramural games. I've worked with older umpires over the years and with some that needed to retire. Most of the time I figured I would know when no one wanted to work with me, i.e. I was making some very bad calls. That really didn't happen to me, but last season I decided would be my last. I knew I wasn't able to move as quickly to cover my position as I should. Plate work simply exhausted me. So I hung them up. Was a bit odd for me this year not to put my gear into the car and go to games, but so be it. The time had come. A pleasant surprise arrived when the local association awarded me their Distinguished Service Award (for retired umpires). It's been a great ride and I have many many great memories. These days I enjoy the college play offs on TV. Call them like you see them. Keep everything in front of you and have fun.
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Old Fri May 26, 2017, 08:33pm
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Northeast Nebraska
Posts: 770
Thank you for your service.

Sounds like it's time to volunteer your untold hours of experience to recruit new umpires and organize clinics. Hell, I'm only 19 seasons in and I'm ready for that. (EDIT: Of course, I say that, but I worked with some very green umpires this past weekend and I was frustrated as hell. I should rephrase that to "new umpires who want to learn and get better.")
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Umpiring Goals: Call the knee strike accurately (getting the low pitch since 2017)/NCAA D1 postseason/ISF-WBSC Certification/Nat'l Indicator Fraternity(completed)
"I'm gonna call it ASA for the foreseeable future. You all know what I mean."

Last edited by teebob21; Fri May 26, 2017 at 08:35pm.
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Old Sat May 27, 2017, 04:48pm
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Location: Fort Myers FL
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I'm happy with becoming a spectator. I hear you about trying to teach new umpires. Too many never seem to improve nor even care about it. Then they wonder why they don't get the "better" games.
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Old Sat May 27, 2017, 07:24pm
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWFLguy View Post
Too many never seem to improve nor even care about it. Then they wonder why they don't get the "better" games.
This is unfortunate, but true When I first moved over to softball about 30 years ago, many umpires believed longevity was a determination in assignments, including regional and national tournaments. In some places, that was true and you would see some people working games they had no business being on the field.

This is a compilation of conversations I've had with a few umpires over the years concerning moving up:

Me: Did you ever attend a national school?
Him: Huh?
Me: How about a regional clinic?
Him: Well, no
Me: When was the last state clinic you attended?
Him: I made one a couple years ago
Me: Do you even show up for association meetings or clinics?
Him: They always have those on the night my pool league plays
Me: So no?
Him: But I've been doing this for almost ten years, so I know what I'm doing.

Truth was these umpires are often known to have to bullshit his/her way through situations when s/he didn't know the rules or changes made over the years

And many still don't get it. Even umpires who have no desire to travel or work the big games have a professional responsibility to stay up to date on all the rules, mechanics and physical abilities to provide the best game they can to all teams.

But I'll never stop helping umpires if they want it. Even some that don't
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Old Mon May 29, 2017, 02:18pm
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Derry, NH
Posts: 1,224
This post got me to thinking about one of my recent partners at a sub-varsity game.

I had worked a few games with him in the past, so knew who he was and kind of what to expect.

This game, he arrived with a handicap placard hanging from his rear-view mirror. (In NH, one can get handicap plates, or a temporary placard which might be used for the driver of the vehicle or a spouse/relative for whom the driver might be transporting.)

I'm not sure who the placard was for, and didn't want to ask. This, the type of person that if you ask "how are you", you'll get a litany of aches, pains, doctor's visits, and lengthy list of prescription medications. So maybe it was for him, or maybe not.

If a person needs a handicap plate, should they still be umpiring?

We parked in a remote area not populated by most fans/parents, and after we left, no one would know it was an umpire's car.
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Old Mon May 29, 2017, 03:48pm
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Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 185
Quote:
Originally Posted by SWFLguy View Post
I'm happy with becoming a spectator. I hear you about trying to teach new umpires. Too many never seem to improve nor even care about it. Then they wonder why they don't get the "better" games.
I turn 65 in October and I feel my age.
While I still do Varsity softball-- which is not very demanding in NYC-- I work with young umpires as an instructor and as a mentor during the baseball season at my local league.
We work 10 and 12U where the skill level is not that good and I do the plate until they feel comfortable to come off the bases and put on the gear.
Keeps me in the game while helping out the local youth and our facility.
And these kids really do want to learn and improve.

Last edited by MT 73; Mon May 29, 2017 at 03:50pm.
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Old Tue May 30, 2017, 09:44am
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: So.Cal
Posts: 313
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tru_in_Blu View Post
This post got me to thinking about one of my recent partners at a sub-varsity game.

I had worked a few games with him in the past, so knew who he was and kind of what to expect.

This game, he arrived with a handicap placard hanging from his rear-view mirror. (In NH, one can get handicap plates, or a temporary placard which might be used for the driver of the vehicle or a spouse/relative for whom the driver might be transporting.)

I'm not sure who the placard was for, and didn't want to ask. This, the type of person that if you ask "how are you", you'll get a litany of aches, pains, doctor's visits, and lengthy list of prescription medications. So maybe it was for him, or maybe not.

If a person needs a handicap plate, should they still be umpiring?

We parked in a remote area not populated by most fans/parents, and after we left, no one would know it was an umpire's car.
Ted I am legally handicapped with Spondylolisthesis at L5 S1 (Bone (vertebra) slips forward onto the bone below it). I have had it since 1999. I took a few years off to help strengthen the muscles in that area. I still officiate at a high level and use a Tens unit after the game to help when I am in pain.

As we have only worked one tournament together you probably did not know this as I did not bring my Tens unit but you might have noticed me lay down between games that week.

I am able to work most sports by using proper/correct stances and mechanics. The funny thing is my back hurts worse working at a desk job.
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