Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Getting the Boot

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Getting the Boot

    I am not usually a coach who does a lot of hollering. But I moved to a new league this season. We have the same home plate ump for every game. During our first game, he was making terrible ball/strike calls, and I heard rumors that he was kind of buddy-buddy with the coach from the other team. And I guess the coach from the other team has a track record of getting real sore when things don't go his way. So, I muttered some things to coaches and players during the game that the umps probably didn't care for. For example, I told a kid, "Good job. You struck him out!" after the ump called a ball on a 3-1 count. Two of the balls were clearly down the middle of the plate. The catcher wasn't even moving his glove. Even the coaches from the other team were scratching their heads.

    These bad calls have been taking place for the past 3-4 weeks. Tonight, my pitcher ran into the same problem. He was on, and he wasn't getting calls. I talked to him, and he told me himself that he was throwing it right down the heart of the plate. Again, a coach from the other team was shaking his head in disbelief. So, this kid who really struck out drew a walk. Then he made it to third base.

    We were losing 12-3. The other team was getting cocky and playing that stupid game of jumping off third base and clapping hands and jumping around to get the pitcher to throw over. I got tired of it. I told my pitcher how to run directly at the runner. An inning later, I told him to keep the ball up so he could throw it if necessary. The kid who really struck out was getting way off the bag and taunting my pitcher. He ran him toward the base and threw over. We nailed him by a full step. The ump called him safe, and I blew up. He immediately gave me the boot, and I hollered this and that as I exited the field. I have coached over 150 youth baseball games. This is the first time I've been tossed.

    I generally feel that getting the boot is bad. I don't think it's the way that adults should behave in front of kids. But my kids seemed to think it was pretty cool that their coach was fired up and sticking up for them. And I felt that I needed to show the umps that I wasn't going to stand idly by and let them trample on my kids just because I'm an outsider.

    I guess I get to watch from the stands for the next game. That should be fun. I welcome your thoughts, stories, etc. on the subject of getting tossed out.
    Last edited by HeinekenMan; 10-09-2012, 10:13 PM.

  • #2
    No story, never been tossed.....but used to umpire years before I coached, and learned how to handle, and what to say to an umpire from the some of the best, as I prolly heard it all at one time or another.

    Can't tell you how many times a coach got me pissed, but had me laughing behind my mask at the same time.....that's what I try to do with the umpires who work our games.

    How about some of the "what works for me" basic stuff?

    1.) At the plate meeting, make sure that introductions are made, and that you remember the umpire(s)' names.....I write them down on my scorecard if I don't already know them.

    2.) When addressing the umpire (asking for the count, number of outs....), call him by his first name.....he's not "Blue", "Ump", "Hey, hey".

    3.) Don't chip from the dugout or coach's box.....if you have something to say, call "Time" and go talk to him about it.

    4.) If you don't think you're getting the "Balls" and "Strikes" calls that you're seeing, again, call "Time" and go talk to him about it......HOWEVER, do not question his strike zone!! Simply ask him where your catcher is setting up incorrectly, so you can correct his positioning, so that the balls that he's catching and not moving on, end up in the strike zone where they should be. After he tells you, take a moment to "counsel" your catcher (don't let him argue that he's in the correct spot already), thank the umpire, and return to the dugout. This usually lets the umpire know that you're watching your catcher and the pitches, and from that point on when the ball is hitting an non-moving mitt, since the catcher is now in the "proper" position thanks to the umpire, you'll usually start getting the calls. BTW, after the game make sure you thank the umpire for helping you work with your catcher.....especially if you know you're going to be seeing the umpire again.

    5.) On blown calls on the base paths....after calling "Time" and walking out to him slowly and calmly.....let him know he's been doing a great job all game, and empathize with the him that you know how hard it can be to always get in the proper position, "But could you have possibly been a bit too far behind/in front of/shielded/wherever on that call? Could you check with 'Bob' to see if he had a different/better angle on it? From where I was standing it sure looked like he was safe/out/whatever". Know in advance that the odds of them changing the call are slim to none, but if you handle it correctly, you'll be surprised how often you'll get the benefit of the doubt on the next close call of the game ("Make up" call? Nah, no ones gonna admit to it anyways).

    6.) In between innings when you're headed over to a coach's box, stop and talk to him about the game, a call he just made (good or bad doesn't matter, as long as you're cool about it either way), the weather, how many games he's working/worked that day, how about those Angels/Dodgers/Yankees/whoever, good looking mom in the 3rd row (no just kidding.....maybe ), anything at all, just get to know him.....hell, he's just trying to do a job the best that he can like the rest of us.

    7.) Finally, wipe away any thoughts that he's "buddy-buddy with the coach from the other team", does zero good for you to feel this way, as you've already got preconceived notions that all of his calls are going to go against you, and that's just not the case. Besides, if they are "buddies", you're not going to change that over the course of the game, so why not try to be his "buddy" too? Now the other coach is his buddy, you're his buddy, we're all buddies.....so now he can call the game evenly for EVERYONE....Yippee!! How does harboring anger and resentment towards him even before the game starts, figure into your plans of having him call the game fairly?

    "Hman" the one thing that you did get correct, was that you realized that you didn't set a very good example for your kids.....hopefully that will be the one and only time you get tossed from a youth sporting event. The kids have enough bad influences from the pros they watch on TV, they don't need it reinforced by their coach on the field.

    Lastly, if you haven't umpired a game yet, volunteer to do one behind the plate in the not too distant future, you'll be surprised at just how difficult it can be to call those ball and strikes called correctly 100% of the time.....not to mention, getting out from behind the plate in a hurry and to the proper position all of the time, if you end up having to do a one-man game. Might give you a better perspective of what it is that they're actually dealing with. If you're lucky, you'll get an irate parent/coach screaming at you, or better yet, comes charging out of a dugout or coach's box at you flailing his arms like he's trying to fly over to you.....simply becasue they don't agree with a call you happened to make, that from where you happened to be, was simple and straightforward. :hissyfit:


    Best of luck with cool times ahead,
    mud -
    In memory of "Catchingcoach" - Dave Weaver: February 28, 1955 - June 17, 2011

    Comment


    • #3
      Mud has good advice. I've tried most of what he recommends. It works. I have umpired a handful of games. I actually was surprised by how easy it is to call balls and strikes. At the same time, I was surprised by how difficult it is to get into the right position and make good calls on close plays on the bases.

      Here's the thing. I am cool with bad calls. Most of these guys are volunteers. I have seen lots of bad calls, and I have handled them with calmness most of the time. But about 80-90 percent of the ball/strike calls have been going against my team, and we have been outscored 82-20 in six games. I've been in games where we were down 12-0 and had recorded only one out in the whole game and my kid threw a pitch down the center of the plate on 3-2 and the umpire told the batter to take his base.

      It simply had reached a point of utter ridiculousness. Clearly, umpires provide favorable calls to coaches who kiss their rear ends. Why can't they just make unbiased calls?

      Comment


      • #4
        Heineken,

        Have you ever honestly sat back and thought that some of these things seem to ALWAYS happen to you? First, it was that bad, bad league, followed by a couple of coaches from that league ganging up on you, followed by switching to a travel team that was run by a guy who owns a baseball warehouse, followed by you getting kicked out of that program, followed by parents ratting you out unneccesarily, followed by you getting hosed by umps. It ALWAYS has you being unjustly treated. I think you need to look in the mirror and realize that not everyone is out to get you and that you are taking this way too far.

        Comment


        • #5
          The highest purpose of youth sports is to teach enduring life lessons, and complaining about the umpiring to the kids or in front of the kids, is IMO, teaching exactly the wrong lesson!

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by bbrages View Post
            The highest purpose of youth sports is to teach enduring life lessons, and complaining about the umpiring to the kids or in front of the kids, is IMO, teaching exactly the wrong lesson!
            I have umpired games, and calling balls and strikes are not easy. Do you really think the umpire changes the strike zone for the opposing team? Calling balls and strikes is very reactionary to what your eyes are telling you. I can't imagine how an umpire would change his strike zone every other inning. The other thing that Mud mentioned was setting a good example for your kids. If they see their coach arguing over strikes and balls, then whats to keep the kid from arguing the call, right or wrong.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by crazyhawk View Post
              Heineken,

              Have you ever honestly sat back and thought that some of these things seem to ALWAYS happen to you? First, it was that bad, bad league, followed by a couple of coaches from that league ganging up on you, followed by switching to a travel team that was run by a guy who owns a baseball warehouse, followed by you getting kicked out of that program, followed by parents ratting you out unneccesarily, followed by you getting hosed by umps. It ALWAYS has you being unjustly treated. I think you need to look in the mirror and realize that not everyone is out to get you and that you are taking this way too far.
              I'm real, real comfortable with myself. I don't need to look in the mirror at all. Look, the problems all boil down to the same thing: political BS involving league officials and coaches.

              By the way, the 2011 president of our local Little League was charged with grand theft last week following a six-month investigation into his alleged theft of funds from the league.

              Comment


              • #8
                I agree with the others, you have complained about other coaches and their antics but you just did what they do. Getting tossed from a game in that manner over a bad call is not good. I def would have a had a discussion with the ump though and or contested the game afterwords. Losing 12-3 and getting tossed is just adding insult to injury anyways.
                Our coaches get a 10 day vacation for getting tossed. Worst thing is now that UMP knows you and won't hesitate to throw you again...

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Standballdad View Post
                  I have umpired games, and calling balls and strikes are not easy. Do you really think the umpire changes the strike zone for the opposing team? Calling balls and strikes is very reactionary to what your eyes are telling you. I can't imagine how an umpire would change his strike zone every other inning. The other thing that Mud mentioned was setting a good example for your kids. If they see their coach arguing over strikes and balls, then whats to keep the kid from arguing the call, right or wrong.
                  Sorry this was meant for Heineken.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Heineken....I suggest you find a different mirror and look again. You have some maturity issues in my opinion. I really don't think you should be coaching youth sports. You are too wound tight about this sport.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by crazyhawk View Post
                      Heineken,

                      Have you ever honestly sat back and thought that some of these things seem to ALWAYS happen to you? First, it was that bad, bad league, followed by a couple of coaches from that league ganging up on you, followed by switching to a travel team that was run by a guy who owns a baseball warehouse, followed by you getting kicked out of that program, followed by parents ratting you out unneccesarily, followed by you getting hosed by umps. It ALWAYS has you being unjustly treated. I think you need to look in the mirror and realize that not everyone is out to get you and that you are taking this way too far.
                      You beat me to it.

                      I typically had great rapport with umpires from kiddie rec ball all the way through college prospect ball. You see the same guys all the time. You might as well get along with them. You're both there for the benefit of the kids.

                      That said, I've been tossed three times. One was justified. One was questionable. The third was ridiculous and overturned.

                      1) I walked up to a LL umpire I couldn't stand. I told him an umpire as poor as him shouldn't be so arrogant. I said it so quietly we were the only ones who could hear the conversation. There were so many complaints against this umpire my getting tossed brought the issue to the surface. The following season he was demoted to machine pitch. It removed his horrible ball/strike calls from being an issue.

                      2) In a 13U tournament I complained for three innings the oppposing pitcher was balking. He never came to a set position. After yelling from the dugout twice I kept my complaints to a discussion between innings. The umpire told me I would be tossed if I came out to discuss it again. Back in the dugout one of my assistants said to me, "Can you believe this guy?" and got tossed. I was tossed when I asked "For what?" out loud. **

                      3) In a 13U game we had two umpires who were brutally bad. If players looked at them cross-eyed they got tossed. When eight players had been tossed after three innings I approached the opposing coach. We agreed to pull our teams from the field and find the tournament director. I was tossed and the game forfeited for refusing to take the field in the top of the fourth. The tournament director postponed the game until later in the day when it was picked up in the fourth inning with better umpires. The original umpires were demoted to 9U games.

                      The umpires I saw week after weeek, year after year I got along with great. Most umpires do a good job. I always tried to remind parents the umpires aren't any closer to being MLB umpires than I was to being a MLB manager and their kids MLB players.

                      ** The rules at this tournament required the site director to escort any ejected participants from the site. As we were walking away my normally calm and funny assistant said loud enough for the umpire to hear, "That umpire sucks." The escort replied, "You can't say that out loud." My assistant responded loud enough for the umpire to hear, "Ok then, he blows chunks." The escort and I busted out laughing.
                      Last edited by tg643; 10-10-2012, 09:40 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by crazyhawk View Post
                        Heineken....I suggest you find a different mirror and look again. You have some maturity issues in my opinion. I really don't think you should be coaching youth sports. You are too wound tight about this sport.
                        Agree. Waaaay to tight to be coaching youth sports.
                        My job is to coach my players to deal dispassionately and resiliently with all adversity, including so-called "bad calls"--real or perceived, it doesn't matter.
                        I don't whine and I don't allow my teams to whine.
                        I've never been tossed; and probably never will.
                        (Never say never).
                        Last edited by skipper5; 10-10-2012, 10:45 AM.
                        Skip

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Wow. We have a lot of perfect youth coaches on here that have never complained about umpires, nor made comments to nor around umpires. Generally I have a good rapport with umpires, but I admit I have let my emotions get the better of me. I was thrown out once several years ago by an umpire with a reputation for starting confrontations. He called our runner on third out because he claimed the third base coach touched him even though he was standing 10 feet away. I lost my cool (I never swore or insulted him, just go loud in my displeasure.) I was very embarassed afterwards. After the game I came back on the premises and apologized to the team and let them know I acted inappropriately and let my emotions get the better of me. My point in sharing this is that I pride myself on keeping things in perspective and focusing only on the things we (the team) can control. I try to teach my team that there are a lot of things out of our control such as whether the defense makes a great play on a hard hit ball, or the umpire's call goes the other way. We can't focus on those, but can only control our attitude and effort. Despite this philosophy I'm human and have on occasion let my emotions get away from me and acted in ways I wasn't proud of. Heineken, if I were you I'd apologize to the team and let the boys know that you know you should have handled the situation differently, but you just let your frustrations get in the way. Even in behaving in a manner we wouldn't want our players to behave we can still teach the kids a life lesson.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            :bowdown:Mud, if we had an archive for "Classic Posts" I'd make sure your post on Umpires be included. Outstanding post. Thanks for the effort it took to make.
                            Granny said Sonny stick to your guns if you believe in something no matter what. Because it's better to be hated for who you are than to be loved for who you're not.

                            I am an ex expert. I've done this long enough to know that those who think that they know it all, know nothing.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by azmatsfan View Post
                              Wow. We have a lot of perfect youth coaches on here that have never complained about umpires, nor made comments to nor around umpires. Generally I have a good rapport with umpires, but I admit I have let my emotions get the better of me. I was thrown out once several years ago by an umpire with a reputation for starting confrontations. He called our runner on third out because he claimed the third base coach touched him even though he was standing 10 feet away. I lost my cool (I never swore or insulted him, just go loud in my displeasure.) I was very embarassed afterwards. After the game I came back on the premises and apologized to the team and let them know I acted inappropriately and let my emotions get the better of me. My point in sharing this is that I pride myself on keeping things in perspective and focusing only on the things we (the team) can control. I try to teach my team that there are a lot of things out of our control such as whether the defense makes a great play on a hard hit ball, or the umpire's call goes the other way. We can't focus on those, but can only control our attitude and effort. Despite this philosophy I'm human and have on occasion let my emotions get away from me and acted in ways I wasn't proud of. Heineken, if I were you I'd apologize to the team and let the boys know that you know you should have handled the situation differently, but you just let your frustrations get in the way. Even in behaving in a manner we wouldn't want our players to behave we can still teach the kids a life lesson.
                              Well, there are several life lessons to teach here. One is to stick up for people when you know that they're being wronged. I taught that last night. I focused on teaching my players to stick up for themselves. We played a team that runs up the score with no respect for the game or good sportsmanship. They ran to second base five times on wild pitches on ball four.

                              I also taught my kids to be confident in themselves and to know that they can play with the other team. My kids did that. They broke through and showed that they can compete against any team. We are close to catching up with the team we played, and they are undefeated right now.

                              Lastly, I definitely will be talking to my team about my behavior. I will express how we should conduct ourselves. I also will explain that it's okay to defend oneself and to defend your family and friends. But you must do it the right way.

                              Comment

                              Ad Widget

                              Collapse
                              Working...
                              X