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Old Sat Oct 14, 2017, 11:01am
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Talking Mechanics

I just read the newest Referee mag article about "working the plate", with some concerns.
1- Chin no lower than catcher helmet. Aren't we taught eyes at top of strike zone, regardless of catcher height and stance.
2 - I don't have catcher in my way if in proper slot with heel-toe, unless she shifts into slot.
3 - The dirt rubbing on ball seems inappropriate or at least unnecessary. Pre-game rubbing of coating is all I will do.

Any comments?
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Old Sat Oct 14, 2017, 10:31pm
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Originally Posted by CecilOne View Post
I just read the newest Referee mag article about "working the plate", with some concerns.
1- Chin no lower than catcher helmet. Aren't we taught eyes at top of strike zone, regardless of catcher height and stance.
2 - I don't have catcher in my way if in proper slot with heel-toe, unless she shifts into slot.
3 - The dirt rubbing on ball seems inappropriate or at least unnecessary. Pre-game rubbing of coating is all I will do.

Any comments?


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Old Tue Oct 17, 2017, 10:29am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CecilOne View Post
I just read the newest Referee mag article about "working the plate", with some concerns.
1- Chin no lower than catcher helmet. Aren't we taught eyes at top of strike zone, regardless of catcher height and stance.
We're taught to have our eyes at the top of the zone, but our chin shouldn't go lower than the top of the helmet. You may have a really short batter and a somewhat large catcher that if you put your eyes at the top, you wouldn't be able to see around the catcher's head. What Jay is using in his Referee article is more of a baseball umpire's stance where the head stays the same height (as long as it's no lower than the chin on the top of the catcher's helmet), no matter the batter's size,

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Originally Posted by CecilOne View Post
2 - I don't have catcher in my way if in proper slot with heel-toe, unless she shifts into slot.
I didn't see any reference to that in the article. Jay said that sometimes the batter may initially restrict the umpire's view, but his/her view will open up when the batter gets into her hitting-position crouch.

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Originally Posted by CecilOne View Post
3 - The dirt rubbing on ball seems inappropriate or at least unnecessary. Pre-game rubbing of coating is all I will do.
As he mentioned in the article, Jay's talking about getting a new ball fresh out of a box or plastic wrapper. It happens sometimes when the three or four balls we get from the home team end up not being available. He recommends not grabbing a handful of dirt and rubbing it directly onto the ball, since we don't allow players to do that. His suggestion is to transfer dirt onto the ball by rolling it on the ground or sprinkling dirt onto it while it's laying there, then rubbing the dirt off of it, which should help get the shine off the ball.

Whoever edits the softball articles in Referee really needs to look at things from a softball perspective. In Jay's article, her refers to the "rubber" instead of the pitcher's plate, and talks of holding up the pitcher by raising the right hand with palm facing her. Those are dead giveaways that he's not a polished softball umpire instructor.
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Old Tue Oct 17, 2017, 11:21am
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Originally Posted by Manny A View Post
As he mentioned in the article, Jay's talking about getting a new ball fresh out of a box or plastic wrapper. It happens sometimes when the three or four balls we get from the home team end up not being available. He recommends not grabbing a handful of dirt and rubbing it directly onto the ball, since we don't allow players to do that. His suggestion is to transfer dirt onto the ball by rolling it on the ground or sprinkling dirt onto it while it's laying there, then rubbing the dirt off of it, which should help get the shine off the ball.
Grab a handful of dirt and... rub it on the ball (illegal), put the ball on the ground and sprinkle it on the ball and then rub (legal)... That's just silly, IMO.

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Originally Posted by Manny A View Post
Whoever edits the softball articles in Referee really needs to look at things from a softball perspective. In Jay's article, her refers to the "rubber" instead of the pitcher's plate, and talks of holding up the pitcher by raising the right hand with palm facing her. Those are dead giveaways that he's not a polished softball umpire instructor.
You expect this level of effort from the magazine that officially stopped any coverage of softball officiating because it was not a "major" sport? (Yeah, I carry a grudge a LONG time!)
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Old Tue Oct 17, 2017, 02:27pm
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Originally Posted by Dakota View Post
Grab a handful of dirt and... rub it on the ball (illegal), put the ball on the ground and sprinkle it on the ball and then rub (legal)... That's just silly, IMO.
He never said it was illegal for an umpire to grab a handful of dirt and rub it on the ball. Hell, I do that all the time, and never really thought of it as an issue. He just suggested not to do it, and it was my speculation that the reason behind it had to do with it being illegal for a player to do it, so he came up with an alternative way of doing it. Yeah, maybe it is silly, but it's not quite as obvious, I suppose.
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Old Wed Oct 18, 2017, 12:31pm
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Post above:
2 - I don't have catcher in my way if in proper slot with heel-toe, unless she shifts into slot.

I didn't see any reference to that in the article. Jay said that sometimes the batter may initially restrict the umpire's view, but his/her view will open up when the batter gets into her hitting-position crouch.

----------------------------

He said something about looking through the catcher if chin below her helmet.
My point is in the proper heel-toe, fully in slot; I barely see the catcher let alone look "through" her.
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Old Sat Oct 21, 2017, 12:45am
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I'll be honest. Years ago I learned that I call a more consistent strike zone by setting up exactly the same on every batter. My head drops no lower than the extended throat protector on my mask being about the height of the catcher's helmet. I look down and into the strike zone, rather than framing myself with it.

Sort of the philosophy of the Gerry Davis stance applied to the heel/toe stance. Mentally, my strike zone adjusts with each batter, yet physically I remain the same. I realize that this is not for everyone, but it seems to work well for me.
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Old Sat Oct 21, 2017, 05:13pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CecilOne View Post
Post above:
2 - I don't have catcher in my way if in proper slot with heel-toe, unless she shifts into slot.

I didn't see any reference to that in the article. Jay said that sometimes the batter may initially restrict the umpire's view, but his/her view will open up when the batter gets into her hitting-position crouch.

----------------------------

He said something about looking through the catcher if chin below her helmet.
My point is in the proper heel-toe, fully in slot; I barely see the catcher let alone look "through" her.
I experimented with the chin-to-helmet today and could not see all of the zone; especially as the batters height varied and the catcher came up for a high pitch or runner.
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