Friday, June 24, 2011

I dare you to forfeit this game

Today, I got to talking to an old friend who I used to umpire with all the time and for some reason, this story came to mind.

About 8 or 9 years ago when I was running the umpires at our association, my buddy and I put ourselves and a very good 12 year old game. It was two of the top teams in the area. We usually put ourselves on these games because they were great games to umpire.

I was working the plate and the game started without an issues. Then about the third inning, I called a kid out on a pitch on the inside corner. He turned and started complaining. I did what I always did and told the coach to tell his player to knock it off. Well, it was the coaches son who was complaining. He told me that if I called strikes that were actually strikes, his players wouldn't complain. Well, obviously, I didn't take that very well and we got into an argument. We went back and forth for a minute and then I just walked away thinking it was over. (Now would be a good time to mention that he and his son were black. Yes it actually has something to do with the rest of this story).

Anyways, I was walking back to my partner when I heard the following line, "Maybe if you weren't a racist you would call balls and strikes the same for my son as everyone else." At this point, my partner and I both at the exact same time turned and threw him out of the game. Well, he wouldn't leave. He just kept yelling, "I'm not going anywhere." After about two minutes of this, I told him that he had one minute to leave the field or I was going to forfeit the game. He looked at me and said, "I dare you to forfeit this game." Well, my partner and I looked at each other and walked off the field.

That game was one that I have never forgotten. I received about 20 phone calls about it within an hour of making my decision. To this day, I stand by our decision. As much as I hated not letting the kids play, I think it was the right call.

You make the call

This happened the other night in a game I was working. Let's see how you would have ruled.

Runner on first. The pitcher comes set and the runner leaves early. Without stepping off, the pitcher spins and throws to second to make the play on the runner. Is this a balk for throwing to an unoccupied base?

You make the call.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Back At It!!

After a couple weeks off for various reasons, I am back at it tonight with two Boys 14 games. It will be nice to get back on the field again. This summer has been pretty crazy with work and my kids starting to get involved with their own activities. But it's always nice to be able to get out there and work a couple games.

Friday, June 17, 2011

You make the call

This question caused quiet a bit of discussion the other day. Let's see how you would rule.

No runners on. The batter hits a sharp groundball to the first basemen. The first basemen makes the play but them falls over as running to first. He see's he won't have time to get up but he also can't reach the bag so he takes his hat off and touches the base with his hat before the runner touches first. What's the call?

By the way, this happened on a game earlier this year. I wasn't on it but I was watching. Interesting conversation after this ruling.

Monday, June 13, 2011

How would you call this

I had this the other night. Let's see how you would call it.

Pitcher pitches and it's going to hit the batter. The batter, doesn't turn his back into the ball, instead he turns into the ball. The bat doesn't leave his shoulder until he realizes he is going to get hit in the gut. At that point he bring his hands (still holding the bat) down the block the ball. The coach start screaming that he broke the plane. I ruled that he was protecting himself and I didn't rule a swing. Was I right or wrong?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Rule Question

I'm sure most of you will know this but I'm tired today and this is all I can come up with.

Runners on first and second. The runner on first gets his signs mixed up and steals. The runner on 2nd does not. They both end of standing on the base. The fielder, tags both of them while they are both standing on the base. Who's out?