There are certain qualities that are needed if you want to be a good umpire. The following are some of the criteria that evaluators are looking for.
Being Professional Means Looking Professional
The appearance of a good umpire should match the dignity and significance of the great game. Avoid wearing faded pants, shirts, or hats.
Always wear clean shoes. If an umpire is poorly dressed, then he could lose respect, which is much the same with a messed-up businessman. As a result, credibility will be diminished.
Being an umpire means that you should have some respect for the game as well as the other people that are involved with it including your fellow umpires, fans, coaches, and players.
It also involves your attitude, behavior, or disposition toward other people, whether it is on or off the game. Perception is important. It is important that you arrive at the games on time. Perhaps at least 30 minutes before the start of the game, preferably one hour.
How’s Your Attitude?
As a good umpire, you should be teachable. If an official refuses to listen as he is being taught, then it only reflects how he will behave in a game while dealing with players and coaches.
Avoid being an official that always says, “Yes, but.” You must be tough, but not overbearing. Having self-confidence is great but avoid being “cocky.” Always be calm but alert at the same time.
You could be friendly but avoid being companionable. Be courteous but avoid being too charming. Most often, it is good to have a dignified attitude since this can help in preventing any arguments.
Do Things with Good Timing
When making decisions, do it in a positive way and most of all in good timing. Having some hesitation or timidity will show that you lack confidence. New umpires must be careful when making decisions prematurely.
Be Physically Fit
If an umpire is not physically fit, then it could be a drawback to the game. Athletes are in good condition, which is why it is only appropriate that officials such as umpires should keep up.
They should try to move fast so that they can get into their position in time to cover a play. Keep in mind that hustle is important.
Knows The Rules
Good umpiring will greatly depend on knowing and understanding the rules of game completely. At the same time, ensuring that these rules are applied properly.
To be an expert on these rules, a consistent analytical study will be required. As an umpire, it is crucial that you should study, do not just read.
In this way, you will be able to visualize the plays and situations in your mind. Constant mistakes in judgment or rule interpretation can cause the coaches, players, and audience to lose their confidence in you.
How Do Umpires Make Their Judgment?
Generally, umpires base their judgment on experience. It is important that their decisions should be dependent on the facts.
Sometimes errors in judgment can’t be avoided. Any umpire can commit mistakes, but you should not try to even it up. The key is consistency. Being consistent is good.
It is important that umpires obtain the best coverage so that appropriate judgment can be called. As much as possible, you should take the best position in any given play without being an obstruction on the player or the ball.
Most often, even if umpires are already experts when it comes to the rules, they still get rejected. The reason behind this is that they have inefficient mechanics. As a good umpire, you should avoid being a show-off. Reliable umpires will efficiently perform their duties without any flairs.
Usually, being extremely dramatic will not accomplish anything, particularly the purpose that it is intended for. As a result, players will lose their confidence since the decisions are made by an actor. That is why it is more effective to have quiet dignity.
Having Control of the Game
As a good umpire, you should be able to handle the game properly and alleviate any unsportsmanlike circumstances. Ejections should be handled professionally. As much as possible, try your best to keep the game moving.
When you’re dealing with an irritated player or coach, try to avoid any trouble. Sometimes unsportsmanlike behavior cannot be prevented, whether it happens in the field or on the bench.
As a good umpire, you should know how to stop it in a professional way before it gets out of hand. When an ejection happens, be sure that you are aware of your responsibilities.
Umpires Have Made Great Contributions to The Game
It has been known worldwide that umpires have made prominent contributions to developing sports games such as baseball. It is the responsibility of umpires to contribute everything they can to retain the great traditions in these sports games by giving the best service possible.
Umpires must carry out their tasks to the best of their abilities so that high standards will be upheld and maintained. Throughout the world, umpires have been well admired for their integrity.
It does not matter how great your knowledge about the rules, mechanics, or judgment is, if the things you do can cause people to think about you negatively. Umpires who are inefficient in some or all these categories can only be in demand once they can master them and obtain a positive image.
Umpires who always complain about the competence of their games or claim that others are getting better assignments should not think of officiating at all.
Do you wear dirty uniforms? Are you overweight? Are you wearing tight pants that can easily get trapped on your shin guards once you rise? Are you wearing an ancient cap that seems to have originated from the WWII era?
Even after having two innings, does your shirt still stick out? Do you tend to visit with coaches and players? Do you have any behaviors that indicate lack of confidence or fear? Most often, coaches can sense these things in umpires, especially on novice umpires.
Major leaguers don’t yell at the top of their lungs or throw fits. On the contrary, they do things with control, making it seem that they are very confident. Are you the type of umpire who talks to catchers or visits their partners? Umpires who chat with their partners or catchers may not be the favorites of coaches.
Do you usually snap your mask and head to the dugout when you get complaints on pitches? Do you have the habit of saying “one more word”? If you hear a batter murmuring something while walking away, are you tempted to follow him and demand to know what he was saying?
When there is an argument, are you the kind of person who gets the first, last, or middle word? In all these situations, it seems that you are the aggressor.
It is crucial that as an umpire, you should have good judgment and be knowledgeable about the mechanics and rules. However, all of these will be deemed useless, if for some reason people look at you as clueless, humorless, arrogant, and the like.
If you want to be a competent umpire, then you should focus more on good officiating among other things. Try to be nice and avoid making any trouble. Do not strive for perfection but rather for excellence.
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