Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Take Me Out To The Ball Game

Dave emailed me yesterday afternoon and suggested I go to his double header later that day. It was in Slippery Rock which is only 11 miles from here and just about as close as it gets when it comes to umpiring locations. Not only was it close, but I knew how to get there which is always a plus! Yesterday's weather was also incredible. Temps in the high sixties, a light breeze and not a cloud in the sky. I couldn't think of a reason not to go.

I had my camera in hand as I approached the field but quickly realized I was going to have a slight problem. The field was completly enclosed by a fence, not just any fence, but a high fence. ALL THE WAY AROUND. I had to shoot through the fence all day which explains some ghost like lines you will see on some of the pictures. Oh well, it just means I need to go to another game with friendlier fences.

dave, slippery rock, 4,08

D says a good umpire doesn't move even if the ball is flying by his head. He must trust his catcher. He says it always helps to have a good catcher and he had a good catcher for this game. I've been at games where the catcher was too lazy to go after the ball and D is getting smacked by the ball time after time. It usually only takes one, "Catch the damn ball", from D to take care of that little problem. Just look at that ball going by his head and he didn't even flinch! If that were me I would have been ducking. I guess that is why he is the umpire and I am the photographer.

dave, slippery rock, 4.08

D making some calls.

dave, slippery rock, 4.08

dave, slippery rock, 4.08

He had only one controversial call the entire game. As you can see the runner is sliding at home plate and from D's view caught the plate with his hand. Safe! I heard a lady yell from somewhere behind me saying she could see from where she was that he was out, "He didn't touch the plate, Blue!". And the coach saw it differently too. He said he could see that he was out from way over there (pointing to where he had been standing) and D said he could see from there (pointing to a spot 5 feet from the plate) that he was safe. The call stood. What do you think? Did he make the right call?

dave, slippery rock, 4.08


dave, slippery rock, 4.08

For those of you that read Pioneer Women's blog, you know she goes on and on about her Marlboro Man. Well, I was feeling a little left out so I just want you to know I too have a Marlboro Man, except I call him my Umpire Man. Who doesn't love a man in a uniform?

dave, slippery rock, 4.08

dave, slippery rock, 4.08

Ok, enough of that. Back to baseball.

Another thing I learned about umpiring yesterday is that D doesn't watch the foul balls that are going behind him. He watches the catcher and can tell from where he is going where the ball is going. Who knew?

dave, slippery rock, 4.08

And now for the last picture of the day. Literally, this is the last picture I took yesterday at the ball game. First, you need to know what is going on to fully appreciate the following photo. the visiting team had been up 4 - 0 going into the bottom of the sixth inning. Slippery Rock scored 6 runs and were now winning 6 - 4. This is now the top of the seventh inning. It is do or die for the visiting team. There are two outs and two men on base. The count on the batter is 3 - 2. The pitcher throws the ball and this is the result.

dave, slippery rock, 4.08

4 comments....porters always have something to say!:

Jock said...

I can't tell if he is safe or out because I can't see the plate. Maybe this was D's problem too.

carriegel said...

lol After the game the coach went up to him and told him he had made the correct call.

megawatt miler said...

i like the pictures!

Peej said...

I can't see the plate either, but that is one heck of a picture. That might be the best amateur baseball picture i've ever seen.

amateur from a professional standpoint, not experience :)

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