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Girls Softball

Discussion in 'Off-topic Zone' started by dexternjack, Sep 16, 2013.

  1. dexternjack

    dexternjack World Traveler Zone Supporter

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    As a preface, my brother-in-law(BIL) has a 17yr old daughter who plays competitive softball. She has already committed to Alabama but has been chased/recruited by numerous other College's since she was 12. She doesn't even bother with High School ball and only plays on club teams until she graduates.

    My BIL decided to become an ASA official a few years ago to umpire games to be close with his daughter on tournaments. Well, this past weekend he was the umpire in charge(UIC) of the whole tourney outside of Baytown. There were 36 teams entered ranging from 5 to 16 yo's(his daughter did not play in this one, was at a different tourney).

    He asked me to help umpire because he was short-handed for the upcoming games. He knew my baseball background and thought it would be a piece of cake, so he rushed/helped me through a fast licensing process. That was mistake #1.

    So, I set out Friday night to do a few games, it was only pool ball so not to serious. We got paid 15 per game to umpire, made a easy 45.

    Here came Saturday, the serious games started at 8am. We get paid 30 per game and being the baseball man I am, I said I would do an ironman(means umping 9 games in one day = $270). My plan was to do this Sat and Sun, mistake #2. It was beyond hot.

    I was not prepared for what was to follow. Baseball/softball rules are simple(common sense to me), but the technicalities are not. I never thought I would have to know uniform rules, hesitation(which is purely discretionary), balking rules(totally different than baseball) and the numerous different ASA substitution rules. I was overwhelmed to say the least.

    FF to a couple games later, I called a girl out at third and caught some major flak from the parents. After some arguing, they appealed. These parents videotaped the plays and tried to prove me wrong. They called the tourney director and showed him video of the play in question. After 8 mins of groaning, it clearly showed I made the right call. Rule is.....play under protest, not hold up the game yet those parents would not let it go.

    Ok, my last game of the night. I had to ump the 6U(six and five year olds). I thought, no sweat, even though those games only have one umpire. Who can take these games that serious? Mistake #3. I ran around like a chicken with my head cut off chasing these girls around. Even if they swung and missed, they would still run to a base, not necessarily first, heh. I thought it was fun and cute that these little girls were having a blast but the parents were worse than the older girls. One mom put her fingers into my chest and threatened me when I said her daughter was out popping up to the catcher(with 2 strikes on her). She said the catcher had to make a play on the ball. I said "she did, the catcher caught it!". Her response was "but, she didn't move two steps".

    Later that inning, a father was heckling me for over 10 minutes. I told him "you can not heckle me from the dugout or curse me from the parking lot, your choice". He chose the latter :D

    What I am getting at is....these parents make soccer moms look like angels. The crap they put their kids through is too much. I did not do this for the money, I was helping out my BIL. I was even willing to miss the game against KC for this. I am grateful to say that they had too many umpires for Sunday(today) and needed volunteers to take the day off. I think I was the first to high-tail it out. Instead, I dropped most of that money on the NFL Sunday ticket because I didn't feel like going to a sportsbar, was worn out!

    Wow, recording games now to call out mistakes? How times have changed. I take back all of my disagreements with umpires over the years, I never knew it was this bad :(
  2. Jammer

    Jammer Retired Air Force Guy

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    Good story. Years ago I umpired little league. Maybe it was the area I was in, or times were different back then, but I seldom got heckled. If I did it was more good-natured than anything else. I can't ever remember having angry parents calling for my throat.
  3. NorthTexan95

    NorthTexan95 Active Member

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    My son is playing his fifth season of Little League baseball right now. Fortunately, I haven't see anything like what you describe. We've seen a few opposing coaches who I wouldn't necessarily want coaching my kids but the coaches my son has had have been good. Of course, this is just Little League. I'm sure on the clubs teams things may be more ... intense.
  4. WV Cowboy

    WV Cowboy Waitin' on the 6th

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    I have coached youth baseball for 24 regular seasons. Two different ages groups, 10-12 and 13-15.
    Post season All Star teams have taken me to six different states to compete. High level of competition.

    Never seen anything like the OP experienced.

    Sad really.
  5. WoodysGirl

    WoodysGirl Do it for the Vine! Staff Member

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    I ref basketball and volleyball, tho I didn't call v-ball this year. It's a thankless task for the most part. I could ref 50 games and still get less than a handful of "Good job, ref" or "Thanks for calling our game."

    I gave up expecting it a long time ago and just give thanks that I get outta there without needing an escort to my car.
  6. WV Cowboy

    WV Cowboy Waitin' on the 6th

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    I make it a point to always shake hands with the umpires, and thank them after a game.
  7. WoodysGirl

    WoodysGirl Do it for the Vine! Staff Member

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    Well, refs are instructed to shake the coaches hands before/after the games. Some are more sincere in that handshake than others. lol

    I was speaking of parents and whatnot. Overall, I like reffing, but I don't have the enthusiasm I did when I first started years ago. I got burnt out. So I long ago gave up aspirations of reffing higher leagues. I'm content with reffing high school ball and AAU.
  8. WV Cowboy

    WV Cowboy Waitin' on the 6th

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    Yea, I agree that is normally the case, .. but there are times when I have to make it a point to seek out umpires after games, but I always try to touch base with them even if they are leaving the field quickly or standing and talking with their other umpires.

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