Umpiring Alone


Keith from Wisconson asks:

I am umpiring 2 men's games soon and I was just informed that I will be working alone. In the past when this has happened, I have worked from behind the plate. Is this the best position to be in while working alone, or is it better to be behind the pitcher to call balls and strikes so that it is easier to see all the action on the bases?

Unfortunately, this is becoming more of a common occurrence as it becomes harder to recruit younger umpires. Although there are some umpires who disagree, in my opinion, the best position to work in when working alone is behind the plate. This will allow you to have better judgment of balls and strikes while still having a solid view of the field as a whole.

My suggestion would be to make sure to mention to both managers during the plate meeting that you are working alone and that you will do your best to cover everything, but steals and bang-bang plays can be difficult to cover along with tag-ups from bases. Most managers will be understanding of your predicament and, in the lower divisions of Little League, may even be willing to come to an agreement of having a coach or parent help out. Be ready to hustle and good luck!

Answered by: Jonathan Bravo

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