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Old Fri Oct 12, 2007, 10:11am
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Does your assignor grade you?

Hey, guys,

I've got a question about those who call local rec ball games. What sorts of feedback do you get from your assignor as to your performance? Does your assignor (or someone high up in your organization) evaluate you? If so, what kinds of things do they evaluate you on?
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Dave

I haven't decided if I should call it from the dugout or the outfield. Apparently, both have really great views!

Screw green, it ain't easy being blue!

I won't be coming here that much anymore. I might check in now and again.
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Old Fri Oct 12, 2007, 11:16am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCASAUmp
Hey, guys,

I've got a question about those who call local rec ball games. What sorts of feedback do you get from your assignor as to your performance? Does your assignor (or someone high up in your organization) evaluate you? If so, what kinds of things do they evaluate you on?
At the rec league level, no. Too many games and too few umpires to go around for that. At the HS level, yes, there are evaluations, usually annually. At the college level, all the time.
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Old Fri Oct 12, 2007, 12:06pm
Ref Ump Welsch
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Our softball "office" here runs an umpire program in addition to being the scheduler, etc., of all the city softball leagues. They're supposed to evaluate everyone at least once a season, and they've had this program in place for the past 3, maybe 4, years (I can't remember which year they started it). I've NEVER been evaluated. Now I've said it here, I might actually be looked at next year!
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Old Fri Oct 12, 2007, 12:37pm
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Our assignor doesn't evaluate us, but I wish he did. Believe me, I'm not perfect (just read some of my posts), but I want to learn more, more, more! It would be nice to have constructive, concrete feedback from someone who's "in the know," rather than to rely on the "old-timers" to let us 15-year rookies where we need to improve.

I've been thinking of asking my assignor to consider doing this, but I just wondered what others thought of the idea.
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Dave

I haven't decided if I should call it from the dugout or the outfield. Apparently, both have really great views!

Screw green, it ain't easy being blue!

I won't be coming here that much anymore. I might check in now and again.
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Old Fri Oct 12, 2007, 02:19pm
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I am an association assignor, as well as an active umpire, and an evaluator. I regularly evaluate the members of my association; most often by working games with them.

That said, I don't think that assignors are necessarily appropriate evaluators. First, there is an inherent conflict in 1) being responsible to fill game positions, 2) sometimes needing to coddle and coerce to get cooperation, and then 3) being the one to tell them when the did poorly. Second, most assignors/coordinators/schedulers/booking agents are selected because they have the time, the mentality, and the willingness to handle the constant juggling act. Not all are even good umpires, attend clinics, stay up with rules and mechanics, or know what a good umpire is, other than ready and willing to accept any assignment needed to be covered. Many assignors are (or should be) retired from calling, and just don't measure up.

In every association I have been involved (including the ones I currently assign for), I have pushed and urged that someone other than the assignor be the primary training officer/evaluator/rater of umpires. Ideally, it should be a training and evaluation committee, chaired by an officer, with participation by non-board members, and the assignor be a non-voting member. In that setting, the assignor advises the committee about feedback from the clients, the committee addresses, evaluates, rates, and ranks the members, with that direction regarding skill level going from committee to assignor, not the other way around.

I think we have all been members of an association where the assignor is a good ol' boy power broker that has lost touch with the job, has his/her group that gets what they want, and puts the other umpires in games without knowing or caring if the right umpires are working the right games. No one is willing to run against them, because 1) it is a burn-out job, 2) you can hardly have a life, and 3) if you run and lose, you can forget ever getting the games you deserve. If you run and win, the usual change is the good ol' boy group is pissed, you get no cooperation, and so you create the good new boy group.
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Old Fri Oct 12, 2007, 02:25pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCASAUmp
Hey, guys,I've got a question about those who call local rec ball games. What sorts of feedback do you get from your assignor as to your performance?
ha ha ha
I plead the fifth. Or 750ml.

Just read my sig. That sez it all.
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Old Fri Oct 12, 2007, 02:57pm
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Steve raises good points about assignors being evaluators. I agree that there should be an actual process involved, rather than "some guy" looking over our shoulders. It can potentially create discontentment between the assignor and the umpires, and while feedback is good, it may not always be the correct feedback.

In my case, I'm very fortunate to have an assignor who is not only quite good at the juggling act, he's also extremely proficient in all things relating to umpiring. His word is one I would trust completely, as he is most definitely "in the know." He is probably the exception rather than the rule, and I'm fortunate to work under him. I'd mention his name if I could, but I'd rather not, simply for various obvious reasons.

For me, I take constructive criticism very well, and I know this person is good at giving an honest eval. I've pondered bringing this up with him, but I wanted to see what other groups do before I ask him.
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Dave

I haven't decided if I should call it from the dugout or the outfield. Apparently, both have really great views!

Screw green, it ain't easy being blue!

I won't be coming here that much anymore. I might check in now and again.
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old Mon Oct 15, 2007, 11:17am
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Location: Gwinnett County, Georgia
Posts: 110
Quote:
Originally Posted by AtlUmpSteve
I am an association assignor, as well as an active umpire, and an evaluator. I regularly evaluate the members of my association; most often by working games with them.

That said, I don't think that assignors are necessarily appropriate evaluators. First, there is an inherent conflict in 1) being responsible to fill game positions, 2) sometimes needing to coddle and coerce to get cooperation, and then 3) being the one to tell them when the did poorly. Second, most assignors/coordinators/schedulers/booking agents are selected because they have the time, the mentality, and the willingness to handle the constant juggling act. Not all are even good umpires, attend clinics, stay up with rules and mechanics, or know what a good umpire is, other than ready and willing to accept any assignment needed to be covered. Many assignors are (or should be) retired from calling, and just don't measure up.

In every association I have been involved (including the ones I currently assign for), I have pushed and urged that someone other than the assignor be the primary training officer/evaluator/rater of umpires. Ideally, it should be a training and evaluation committee, chaired by an officer, with participation by non-board members, and the assignor be a non-voting member. In that setting, the assignor advises the committee about feedback from the clients, the committee addresses, evaluates, rates, and ranks the members, with that direction regarding skill level going from committee to assignor, not the other way around.

I think we have all been members of an association where the assignor is a good ol' boy power broker that has lost touch with the job, has his/her group that gets what they want, and puts the other umpires in games without knowing or caring if the right umpires are working the right games. No one is willing to run against them, because 1) it is a burn-out job, 2) you can hardly have a life, and 3) if you run and lose, you can forget ever getting the games you deserve. If you run and win, the usual change is the good ol' boy group is pissed, you get no cooperation, and so you create the good new boy group.

I like the GUA system, which is basically what you have described. They have specific evaluators, and a specific assignor. Works pretty well, in my opinion.
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Old Mon Oct 15, 2007, 01:43pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JPRempe
I like the GUA system, which is basically what you have described. They have specific evaluators, and a specific assignor. Works pretty well, in my opinion.
The Florida HS system also requires a separate evaluation committee, along with training, grievance, recommendations, and assignment committees. (The assignment committee ensures that the booking agent is fair in his assignments.) If your association is blessed with enough good umpires who care, it works well.
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