The Official Forum  

Go Back   The Official Forum > Softball

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
  #16 (permalink)  
Old Sun Mar 28, 2004, 12:19pm
Official Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Sherman, TX
Posts: 4,375
Quote:
Originally posted by IRISHMAFIA
Quote:
Originally posted by Skahtboi
And I walked away from the SP I was doing, because it was so boring that I would rather watch grass grow. Of course, as I have mentioned, around here they play beer ball, so as the night wears on the games get sloppier and the whining becomes more frequent. I might feel different about it if they would outlaw the intoxicants until after play was over.
And as I tell the umpires who work in my area, if you allow that to happen, you have no one to blame, but yourself.

Incorrect! This is the decision of the "powers that be" that run the privately owned complex. For years the UA that umpires for this complex have asked the owners to keep the intoxicants out of the dugouts, and for that matter, out of the park during game time. The owners steadfastly refuse. The local PARD that contracts with them for slow pitch leagues seem unwilling to buck the owners on this particular rule as well. Game control is never an issue. You get drunk, speak your mind, and you are gone. No big deal. As for tossing players simply because they may have had a few too many, we are strictly told not to do that, until they become verbally abusive to other players or to officials. However, the varying levels of play diminish as the overall team level of intoxication increases. That, plus the continual aggrivation from drunk wanna be Ty Cobbs, is why so many able officials walk away from the SP game in this area.

How can you possibly be so crass, then, as to place the blame on the officials?

[Edited by Skahtboi on Mar 28th, 2004 at 11:26 AM]
__________________
Scott


It's a small world, but I wouldn't want to have to paint it.
Reply With Quote
  #17 (permalink)  
Old Sun Mar 28, 2004, 05:55pm
Official Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 14,565
Quote:
Originally posted by IRISHMAFIA


And as I tell the umpires who work in my area, if you allow that to happen, you have no one to blame, but yourself.

Quote:

Incorrect! This is the decision of the "powers that be" that run the privately owned complex. For years the UA that umpires for this complex have asked the owners to keep the intoxicants out of the dugouts, and for that matter, out of the park during game time. The owners steadfastly refuse. The local PARD that contracts with them for slow pitch leagues seem unwilling to buck the owners on this particular rule as well. Game control is never an issue. You get drunk, speak your mind, and you are gone. No big deal.
What do you mean it is no big deal? Of course, it's a big deal if the umpires are walking away from the game because of it.

Quote:
As for tossing players simply because they may have had a few too many, we are strictly told not to do that, until they become verbally abusive to other players or to officials.
Do you have that in writing and signed by an officer of the management? If not, quess who is going to get sued when some idiot is on the field under the influence and takes a line-drive in the face? Are you that confident of your insurance to risk that?
Quote:

However, the varying levels of play diminish as the overall team level of intoxication increases. That, plus the continual aggrivation from drunk wanna be Ty Cobbs, is why so many able officials walk away from the SP game in this area.

How can you possibly be so crass, then, as to place the blame on the officials?
You place yourself in that position. Don't take it. Throw them out! Where the hell is your association? When I'm umpiring, I am representing ASA and my local association. If the owners are afraid of the players, tell them to go work the games.

There use to be a huge Independence Day tournament in Northern Delaware. It use to draw 160-180 teams, mostly from PA, North Jersey and the NYC area. Our local associations use to lose a minimum of two umpires a year due to the abuse the visiting teams would bring. They are away from home and think they are untouchable. Finally, my predecessor stood up at state clinics and told umpires that he would not work this tournament and suggested other umpires do the same. I couldn't disagree with him, but I worked a year as the UIC in an effort to save this tournament for ASA.

It was nothing more than a position to rule on protests and monitor the games. A Coors Light team from North Jersey had a player shove one of the umpires. Unfortunately, the umpire was a GAGA and just backed off. As the UIC, I would not stand for it and insisted that the director of the alleged sports club tell the team that player was no longer welcomed on the field. I was told the team would be warned and they should not do it when they come back next year.

The following general meeting of the local association, I joined the UIC in his assessment of the tournament and suggested they not work it as there is no support for them from the club pocketing some serious bucks from the tournament.

They had to cancel the following year as they couldn't get umpires to work it.

It wasn't anything against the sports club running the show, it was a matter of protecting the umpires who pay their dues and attend the clinics. If I never do anything else as a UIC, I will always do everything I can to protect the umpires who walk on the field and officiate the games assigned.

The blame I lay at the feet of the officials is that if you and your association allow such things to occur, shame on both of you.

I constantly fight the impression that SP is nothing, but a bull**** game with a bunch of swill-drinking, beer-bellied players. Meanwhile, there are people out there who have allowed this impression to permeate throughout the softball community and perpetuate the fallacy by kowtowing to those who ignore their resources because they cannot take their eyes off the dollars they are counting.

I am not blaming the officials for walking away, but for not exercising their right to take part in the governing of their association. I blame the associations for not protecting their umpires. Anyone in the business world will tell you there is a difference between signing a new account and contracting a good account. All work contracted is not necessarily good work.

It's not a matter of being crass, but a challenge for the umpires to take the lead in the future of the game of softball. No person should have to endure what many believe sports officials should take just because it is offered in a competitive situation. Wasn't it the governer or congressman from a Midwest state last year make the statement that there are times he thought a sports official should get hit? If I remember correctly, that state's assembly failed to pass a act protecting sports officials from abuse that same week. If the only way to provide the adequate protection and leadership is to dump some players, why would anyone hesitate?

JMHO,
__________________
The bat issue in softball is as much about liability, insurance and litigation as it is about competition, inflated egos and softball.
Reply With Quote
  #18 (permalink)  
Old Sun Mar 28, 2004, 10:20pm
Official Forum Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 573
Quote:
Originally posted by IRISHMAFIA
Quote:
Originally posted by IRISHMAFIA


And as I tell the umpires who work in my area, if you allow that to happen, you have no one to blame, but yourself.

Quote:

Incorrect! This is the decision of the "powers that be" that run the privately owned complex. For years the UA that umpires for this complex have asked the owners to keep the intoxicants out of the dugouts, and for that matter, out of the park during game time. The owners steadfastly refuse. The local PARD that contracts with them for slow pitch leagues seem unwilling to buck the owners on this particular rule as well. Game control is never an issue. You get drunk, speak your mind, and you are gone. No big deal.
What do you mean it is no big deal? Of course, it's a big deal if the umpires are walking away from the game because of it.

Quote:
As for tossing players simply because they may have had a few too many, we are strictly told not to do that, until they become verbally abusive to other players or to officials.
Do you have that in writing and signed by an officer of the management? If not, quess who is going to get sued when some idiot is on the field under the influence and takes a line-drive in the face? Are you that confident of your insurance to risk that?
Quote:

However, the varying levels of play diminish as the overall team level of intoxication increases. That, plus the continual aggrivation from drunk wanna be Ty Cobbs, is why so many able officials walk away from the SP game in this area.

How can you possibly be so crass, then, as to place the blame on the officials?
You place yourself in that position. Don't take it. Throw them out! Where the hell is your association? When I'm umpiring, I am representing ASA and my local association. If the owners are afraid of the players, tell them to go work the games.

snip

The blame I lay at the feet of the officials is that if you and your association allow such things to occur, shame on both of you.


Well said Mike, well said.
Not just the part I quoted above but all of it, every last word of your advice is valid and timely.

__________________
ISF
ASA/USA Elite
NIF
Reply With Quote
  #19 (permalink)  
Old Sun Mar 28, 2004, 11:13pm
Ref Ump Welsch
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
As to the issue of booze, check your local laws to see if booze is allowed in the ballpark. Here in Omaha, booze is not even allowed in our ballparks (City of Omaha that is), and we can forfeit a game immediately with no warning and call 911 to have the cops come out and write tickets, which they will. Because that is in place, we've never had any problems except when they drink beforehand and show up. I haven't had any problems (knock on wood).

In LaVista (a suburb of Omaha), they have a bar in the clubhouse in the middle of the complex. Booze isn't allowed outside of the bar, and outside booze brought in is disallowed as well. Again, booze in the dugouts is automatic forfeiture and a call to 911.

In Council Bluffs, Iowa, across the river, they actually have a golf cart that drives in the complex selling booze. We also don't do anything about booze in the dugouts. I mean, we can warn them about not drinking during the games, but we can't forfeit or eject. I guess they are a little wetter on the Iowa side of the river than Omaha is....well, they sure gamble a lot more over there!!!!!
Reply With Quote
  #20 (permalink)  
Old Tue Mar 30, 2004, 03:12pm
Official Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Sherman, TX
Posts: 4,375
Quote:
Originally posted by Ref Ump Welsch
As to the issue of booze, check your local laws to see if booze is allowed in the ballpark.
In a public park, it wouldn't be. However, as I stated, this is a privately owned complex. Therefore, whatever they say goes.
__________________
Scott


It's a small world, but I wouldn't want to have to paint it.
Reply With Quote
  #21 (permalink)  
Old Tue Mar 30, 2004, 03:40pm
Official Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Sherman, TX
Posts: 4,375
[QUOTE]Originally posted by IRISHMAFIA
Of course, it's a big deal if the umpires are walking away from the game because of it.{/QUOTE]

True. That wasn't how I meant the term "no big deal" initially, but as you put it here I agree. An old timer is SP with this particular association is one that has five years experience.

Quote:
Do you have that in writing and signed by an officer of the management? If not, quess who is going to get sued when some idiot is on the field under the influence and takes a line-drive in the face? Are you that confident of your insurance to risk that?
Yes. It is covered in the policies of the park. As for the risk factor, that is one of many reasons why I no longer work the game around here. My last season calling SP there was a terrible accident where one of the intoxicated players shattered his leg. Ambulance was called and everything.

Quote:
You place yourself in that position. Don't take it. Throw them out! Where the hell is your association? When I'm umpiring, I am representing ASA and my local association. If the owners are afraid of the players, tell them to go work the games.
As you know, I no longer place myself in that position. I agree, and used to argue the point when I was a member of this association that there needs to be a stricter policy in place regarding alcohol consumption before and during game times. Those who echoed these sentiments found our pleas falling on deaf ears, as many of the umpires involved in this association were also players, who wanted to participate in the manner which they had become accustomed. Incidentally...THE owner is one of the players.

Quote:
There use to be a huge Independence Day tournament in Northern Delaware. It use to draw 160-180 teams, mostly from PA, North Jersey and the NYC area. Our local associations use to lose a minimum of two umpires a year due to the abuse the visiting teams would bring. They are away from home and think they are untouchable. Finally, my predecessor stood up at state clinics and told umpires that he would not work this tournament and suggested other umpires do the same. I couldn't disagree with him, but I worked a year as the UIC in an effort to save this tournament for ASA.

It was nothing more than a position to rule on protests and monitor the games. A Coors Light team from North Jersey had a player shove one of the umpires. Unfortunately, the umpire was a GAGA and just backed off. As the UIC, I would not stand for it and insisted that the director of the alleged sports club tell the team that player was no longer welcomed on the field. I was told the team would be warned and they should not do it when they come back next year.

The following general meeting of the local association, I joined the UIC in his assessment of the tournament and suggested they not work it as there is no support for them from the club pocketing some serious bucks from the tournament.

They had to cancel the following year as they couldn't get umpires to work it.

It wasn't anything against the sports club running the show, it was a matter of protecting the umpires who pay their dues and attend the clinics. If I never do anything else as a UIC, I will always do everything I can to protect the umpires who walk on the field and officiate the games assigned.
I commend you and applaud your spirit. However, as I was with this particular association only a matter of a few years, I had no power, other than to vote, which I did. This, however, was definitely one of those "good ol' boy" associations, where it is more who you know than what you know. You may be right that my image of SP was tainted by this experience. The SP UIC of my current association has been bugging me to call some SP, especially since he has 20 tournaments coming up in the next few months. Who knows...maybe I will give it another shot. (Time is more of a factor these days. Time and the fact that the game does still bore me. )

Quote:
The blame I lay at the feet of the officials is that if you and your association allow such things to occur, shame on both of you.

I constantly fight the impression that SP is nothing, but a bull**** game with a bunch of swill-drinking, beer-bellied players. Meanwhile, there are people out there who have allowed this impression to permeate throughout the softball community and perpetuate the fallacy by kowtowing to those who ignore their resources because they cannot take their eyes off the dollars they are counting.

I am not blaming the officials for walking away, but for not exercising their right to take part in the governing of their association. I blame the associations for not protecting their umpires. Anyone in the business world will tell you there is a difference between signing a new account and contracting a good account. All work contracted is not necessarily good work.
I did take part in the governing of this association, to the limits that parlimentary procedure and civil law would let me. So did several others. As a matter of fact, the other day I ran into one of the officers who actually tried to fight the owners and the association on this issue. We talked for a bit and I asked him if he was still umpiring SP. Turns out he walked away the year after I did, for many of the same reasons. This was a guy with 12 years experience in the game, and he now no longer works SP either. (He was one of those officials that young umpires would do well to pattern themselves after, and a mentor to many, myself included.)

Quote:

It's not a matter of being crass, but a challenge for the umpires to take the lead in the future of the game of softball. No person should have to endure what many believe sports officials should take just because it is offered in a competitive situation. Wasn't it the governer
Quote:
(governor) or congressman from a Midwest state last year make the statement that there are times he thought a sports official should get hit? If I remember correctly, that state's assembly failed to pass a act protecting sports officials from abuse that same week. If the only way to provide the adequate protection and leadership is to dump some players, why would anyone hesitate?
I agree with all of this. Who, in their right mind would argue? But there are times when those who are in power, even when they are wrong, have enough support to keep the rest from making needed and effective changes. That was the case I was dealing with. No more. The association to which I now belong has all the instruments in place to best serve and protect all of their umpires, both SP and FP. It is a far different association than the one I used to belong to. I did what I needed to do, find an association who is far more interested in serving the communities and the umpires and the players, rather than bowing to the monied interests and their desires.

[Edited by Skahtboi on Mar 30th, 2004 at 02:47 PM]
__________________
Scott


It's a small world, but I wouldn't want to have to paint it.
Reply With Quote
  #22 (permalink)  
Old Tue Mar 30, 2004, 03:55pm
Official Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 14,565
Scott,

Sounds like you have your hands full, but I wouldn't give up. If for no other reason than being a thorn in the side of the guys forcing the issue. Eventually, enough people will tire of the business and oust the present powers that be and get the association back on track. Okay, so maybe that will not happen, but the fight would be interesting.

OTOH, I wouldn't totally discount SP just because you don't want to work it locally. Do you not have other SP options than the ones controlled by your association?

__________________
The bat issue in softball is as much about liability, insurance and litigation as it is about competition, inflated egos and softball.
Reply With Quote
  #23 (permalink)  
Old Tue Mar 30, 2004, 04:08pm
Official Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Sherman, TX
Posts: 4,375
As I said, Mike, that association I am talking about above, I no longer work for. My current association (a 40 mile drive but well worth it) works SP and FP for several cities in the North Dallas area. It is a great group, concerned about their umpires and the players they serve. They have many avenues for umpires to persue in both the SP and FP game, including various levels of play. I do admire your passion for the SP game, as well as for those who officiate it. As I also stated, I would never say never where officiating SP is concerned, it is just that with the growth of FP in these parts, and my enjoyment of that game, I find myself working more than I really ought to now!

Thanks for the encouraging words, though, and for sharing your thoughts at such length above. I am sure that many of us can learn from them.
__________________
Scott


It's a small world, but I wouldn't want to have to paint it.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:56pm.



Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.3.0 RC1