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Rules, Mechanics and Guidance for Youth Umpires. Eric Gonzales Asst Chief Umpire. Agenda. Pregame Rules Plate positioning Signaling Detailed 2-man mechanics Game management . What Makes a Great Umpire?. Rules knowledge Positioning and mechanics Pregame preparation and management

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Presentation Transcript
agenda
Agenda
  • Pregame
  • Rules
  • Plate positioning
  • Signaling
  • Detailed 2-man mechanics
  • Game management
what makes a great umpire
What Makes a Great Umpire?
  • Rules knowledge
  • Positioning and mechanics
  • Pregame preparation and management
  • Game management
  • Confidence and decisiveness
equipment checklist
Equipment Checklist
  • Hat (never worn backwards)
  • Shirt (always tucked in)
  • Khaki pants (gray slacks even better)
  • Black belt
  • Black shoes
  • Plate Umpire (PU): face mask, chest protector, leg guards, indicator, brush, pen
  • Recommended for PU: Protective cup, ball bag, plate shoes
  • Recommended for Base Umpire: (BU):
    • Red flag
    • Sunglasses
effective pregame management
Effective Pregame Management
  • First impressions are critical
  • Arrive 30 mins early if possible
  • Greet coaches from both teams
  • Inspect all helmets/bats
    • Helmets: NOCSAE certification, cracks
    • Bats: Little League Approved, 33” max, 2.25” max diameter, BPF 1.15 max, look for dents and cracks
pregame conference with managers
Pregame Conference with Managers
  • Have a quick conference with both managers every game
  • Collect lineups
  • Identify ineligible pitchers
  • Very important: Ask both managers “Are your players properly equipped for the game?”
  • Equipment issues to watch for:
    • Dangling throat protector on all catchers’ masks
    • Long-model chest protector for catchers
    • Protective cups mandatory for catchers
pregame conference for umpires
Pregame Conference for Umpires
  • Briefly discuss how you’ll work together
  • Tag-Ups/Touches
    • Plate Ump (PU): All tag-ups and touches of 3rd base, except batter-runner
    • Base Ump (BU): All other tag-ups/touches on bases
  • Coverage of third base with runner on first and ball hit to outfield
    • PU takes runner at third
    • BU tracks batter-runner
  • Signals
    • Number of outs
    • Infield fly
    • Timing play
key rule changes for 2009
Key Rule Changes for 2009
  • Pitcher can move to catcher if threw 40 pitches or fewer
  • Local rule changes
    • Catcher on base can be replaced by courtesy runner with two outs
    • Minor changes to AA pitching rules (see local rules for specifics)
baseball rule myths
Baseball Rule Myths
  • “Hands are part of the bat”
    • Batter hit on hand by pitched ball is awarded 1st base (unless swung at pitch)
  • “Batter overrunning first base must turn right”
    • Batter may turn in any direction as long as returns immediately to 1st
  • “Ball is dead on a foul tip”
    • Ball nicked by bat and going directly into catcher’s glove is live, just like any other strike.
baseball rule myths1
Baseball Rule Myths
  • “When bunting, bat must be pulled out of strike zone to avoid a called strike”
    • For a bunt to be a called strike, there must be an effort to intentionally meet the ball with the bat
  • “Tie goes to the runner”
    • There is no such rule. The umpire must judge whether runner is out or safe.
  • “Runner must slide when play at base or plate is close”
    • There is no “must slide” rule. Runner can slide or try to get around fielder.
baseball rule myths2
Baseball Rule Myths
  • “Home plate umpire can overrule base umpire”
    • The umpire who made the call can ask for help but doesn’t have to
    • No umpire shall criticize, seek to reverse, or interfere with another umpire’s decision unless asked to do so by the umpire who made the original call
areas to review in rulebook
Areas to Review in Rulebook
  • Interference (usually on batter or runner)
    • Player out, runners return to last base touched before interference
  • Obstruction (by fielder)
    • Runners proceed to base(s) they would have reached had there been no obstruction
  • Runners leaving early
    • Affects all runners; runners proceed to bases only if forced
  • Infield fly (0 or 1 out, runners on 1st and 2nd or bases loaded)
    • Batter automatically out, ball still in play, runners may advance
signaling1
Signaling
  • The “Basic Six”
    • Strike
    • Ball
    • Foul
    • Time
    • Safe
    • Out
strike
Strike
  • Stand up
  • Wait 1-2 secs
  • Arm high
  • Facing pitcher
  • Be heard (unless swinging strike)
slide23
Ball
  • Remain set
  • Wait 1-2 secs
  • Vocalize
slide24
Foul
  • Usually plate ump
  • Stand up
  • Reach up with both hands
  • Be heard (unless obvious)
slide25
Time
  • Same mechanic as calling “Foul”
  • Either plate or base ump
  • Be heard
slide26
Safe
  • Usually base ump
  • Stand up
  • Stretch arms wide
  • Vocalize if close play
  • Back to set position
slide27
Out
  • Both umps
  • Same mechanic as “Strike”
  • Vocalize if close play
an important and underutilized signal play
An Important and Underutilized Signal: “Play!”
  • Wait until pitcher touches pitching plate
  • Point at pitcher
  • Vocalize “Play!” (if needed)
  • Remember to use this after all foul balls and time outs
theory and mechanics of positioning
Theory and Mechanics of Positioning

What are positioning and mechanics?

At any moment during a game, each umpire moves to a position on the field he thinks will give him the best opportunity to rule correctly on the next play. Two-man mechanics is a system of angles, distances, shared responsibilities and anticipation.

Square Stance / Balloon Protector

  • Keep your head and shoulders perpendicular to the pitcher. Press the protector firmly against the underside of your chin.
  • Follow the ball with your eyes only – no head movement! Watch the ball all the way to the glove.
  • If it’s a Ball, stay in your stance and say “Ball”. If it’s a strike, stand straight up and call “Strike” while keeping your head and eyes on the ball.
  • Angle is getting the right line of sight.
  • Distance is secondary to angle. If you have the correct angle you can probably see the action accurately.
  • Anticipation is being able to predict what is likely to happen on the next play.
  • Shared responsibility is working with your umpire partner.

Base Umpire / Hands-on-knees

Depending on the game situation, you’ll stand in either position “A”, “B” or “C”.

mechanics and positioning made simple 2 man crew
Mechanics and Positioning … Made Simple (2-man crew)

What are the key points?

F9

  • Base Umpire : you’re responsible for watching 1, 2 and 3rd.
    • Safe? Out? Touch Base?
    • Start from A, B or C position and then move depending on whether it’s an infield or outfield hit.
  • Plate Umpire: you’re responsible for all catches, fair, foul, calling pitches and plays at home.
    • If there is a runner on 2nd or 3rd be ready to move to a position to see the runner at home
    • Is it a force or tag play?
  • Show confidence … use clear voice and hand signals … sell your call!
  • Mistakes happen … just learn!

A = None on Base

F8

B = Runner on 1st

BU

BU

R2

R1

F7

C = all other situations

BU

R3

B

CU

effective game management tips
Effective Game Management Tips
  • Confident calls
  • Be heard
  • Clear signals
  • Wait 1-2 secs before making a call
  • Don’t get too close to the play when making a call
  • Quick transition between innings
    • Hold to 1 minute, up to 8 warm-up pitches
  • Remind coaches and players that judgment calls cannot be argued
    • If necessary, can eject the player or manager (ejection report to Chief Umpire required)
  • Mistakes will happen—stay focused on the next play
  • Have fun!
ejection report now mandatory
Ejection Report (now mandatory)
  • Please include the following in an ejection report, which must be emailed to umpire@saratogall.org
    • Name of person ejected and role on team (player, coach)
    • Home team
    • Visiting team
    • Division (Majors, AAA, etc.)
    • Game time
    • Time and inning when ejection occurred
    • One paragraph description of what happened
questions
Questions?
  • Send them to umpire@saratogall.org
  • Goal is to compile a running Q&A on the Umpire section of the Saratoga LL website