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The Intricacies of Fourth Outs

Other than umpires, there are not many people who understand there can be four outs in an inning. The purpose of getting a fourth...

How to Be an Effective Crew Chief

Every high school and college softball game should have a crew chief. Generally, that is determined by the assigner and noted on the scheduling...

Omaha!

A stadium in Nebraska is the field of dreams for college umpires. It’s 10:15 a.m. on a mid-June Sunday and George Drouches has already put...

Checked Swings Checklist

One of the most difficult calls for base umpires is the checked swing. When the plate umpire comes to you for help, you have...

Not Every Infraction Leads to an Immediate Dead Ball

Play is stopped when the ball becomes immediately dead by rule. It is obvious the ball becomes dead when a foul is not caught...

Defusing Coach Confrontations

The psychology of being a coach lends itself to an “us-against-the-world” mindset. As a game or a match wears on, tension inevitably mounts. Soon...

Somebody’s Watching You

I n my early years as an amateur umpire, there was no formal performance appraisal. Once in a blue moon we’d get a call from...

Creating the Holistic Official

By now, the headlines have grown tiresome. High school football, once a Friday Night Lights tradition, can now be called Thursday Night Lights or...

Great Beginnings Beget Solid Performances

Even if you’re not a fan of classical music, you likely recognize the first eight notes of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony when you hear them....

Stay Under Control When Shifting About the Field

If you look at film clips of MLB games from years ago, you’ll often see umpires dashing madly about and calling plays on the...

The Art of Listening to Coaches

Successful officials are approachable and are good listeners. They recognize they have two ears and one mouth and they use them in that proportion....

Maintain Professional Communication With Coaches

In today’s society, too many people in the workplace have forgotten why they go to work. For most, it seems, the paycheck is the...

How to Show Confidence Without Raising Your Voice

As I’ve grown over the years, I actually look back at early times in my career and laugh. Many times, when enforcing rules, “winning”...

Order on the Court

Basketball is one of the most exciting sports to watch in person. The pace of the game, smaller venues than most other sports and...

Know How to Enforce Double Base Rules

In an effort to limit potential collisions and injuries, softball organizations have adopted the use of a double base at first base. And while...

Five Ways You Can Totally Screw Up a Game

There are lots of ways an official can screw up a game. But there are five errors in particular a crew or official can...

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