Men’s slow pitch – NOW I remember….

My 1st umpiring experience, really, came in Men’s slow pitch in Livingston. I took the ASA course with Bruce Kaufman, and did 20-30 mens games and a handful of girls fast pitch each year for my 1st few years. When I started to do baseball, I realized quickly that there was a whole other world for me out there – faster paced, better paying, and without the constant whining and moaning that is ingrained in men’s slow pitch. I’ve been fortunate enough to have plenty of games and have stayed away from slow pitch for at least the last 2 years.

So last night I did the final of the men’s league in Denville!

This time of the year, after not working in August, I’m just looking to fill days. So when I had the chance to work with my friend Ray on a beautiful night, I took it. My overall summary – an enjoyable experience with a bunch of pretty good guys.

That being said, the 1st 2 innings were a microcosim of men’s slow pitch. Here’s what we had:

  •  18 runs scored in the top of the 1st
  • The left fielder stomping in after the 10th walk of the inning, going to the mound and saying “do you want to keep pitching?”
  • Multiple requests to have white cars parked 30 feet away in the lot behind home plate to be moved because they were distracting
  • The catcher drawing lines on the ground to show my partner how he was missing pitches
  • A really nice play by a shortstop

And a pretty good time. I think the 18 run 1st took the wind out of everyone’s sails, and I’m sure a closer game would have brought out the best in the boys, but we had a stress free night and were out of there in 2 hours. I’ll take it.





2 responses

  1. “The catcher drawing lines on the ground to show my partner how he was missing pitches”

    I’m hoping the catcher was subsequently removed from the game by your partner. If not, this is a glaring example why these leagues are so bad.

  2. Andrew…

    I personally work a wide variety of games and communicate with a lot of umpires and spend a lot of time thinking about and debating game management – and I have really settled into “whatever works for you”. I read on the ump-emp forum how the magic word is “you”. Or that “showing up” the ump is an automatic ejection. But I really feel that every ump has to manage his individual game, however it works for him. If he decides that he wants to put up with a “you don’t know the rules”, for whatever reason, it’s his call and should not be judged, IMO.

    This league did not use umps during the season and were goofy more than dicky. I personally would have told the catcher that fun is fun but don’t ever do that again, but I don’t fault my partner for the way he handled it. He chose not to take a low key, almost comical experience, and turn into something else by ejecting someone. For him, letting it ride kept the game light and got everyone through stress free. And I don’t buy the “making it worse for the next guy” – especially in this case where the next guy will almost certanly be him in next year’s playoffs.

    As always, Andrew, thanks for reading

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