Carl Childress

carl_childress11If you are an umpire and are not familiar with Carl Childress, you’re missing out on one of the best resources available to you. Carl is an umpire, educator and author from Edinburg, TX and just published his 36th book on the rules of baseball and the mechanics of umpiring the game.


Carl is best known for his universally praised, annually updated Baseball Rule Differences. This book contains hundreds of official interpretations detailing rules differences from FED (NHFS, or High School), to NCAA, to OBR and is considered a must have for serious umpires.  Carl’s writing style is an acquired taste – it took me about 3 pages to acquire it. I am currently reading his newest (I believe) book called Inside The Books, a concise look at the ABC’s of baseball rules. This takes an in depth look at the history and interpretation of 13 of baseball’s most “discussed” rules – including obstruction, interference, batting out of order, appeals and balks. Here’s a great little snippet:

Play 128: R2 has been taking a huge, secondary lead. After the pitch, R2 starts lazily back to the base, and the catcher and F6 execute a perfect pick-off. F6 reaches the base first, drops to one knee, and, an instant later, the ball and R2 arrive simultaneously. R2 has no access to 2nd and is tagged out. Ruling: In FED and NCAA, the umpire cancels the out and awards R2 third. In OBR, he’s simply a former runner on his way back to the dugout.

Great stuff. Carl’s website is full of great, FREE tips and resources. I recommend a visit. You might find something for your wife or in laws to buy you for Christmas.

by Paul Simko


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