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 Plate Mechanics II

Stick to the wide zone

Even with a tight contest, as two teams battle it out, the plate umpire stays with his or her K-zone. Don't narrow the zone--on the close pitch with runners on, late innings. Take a deep breath. Keep throwing the hammer

fyi    The ball clubs adjusts to your zone, not the other way around. 

 Keep two things in mind: 

  • Err to the strike.

  • Strikes and outs get you home.  


Umpire James stands firm in the slot

Again, feel like you’re drifting in the zone?

Pull the trigger that says you're locked in.

•  Take a deep breath.
•  Slow down your call
even more.

Try to visualize a chunk of cheese over home base. If at least half the baseball cuts the cheese, call the strike.



Check-swing, Part II.

The check-swing might not show up during a game--or it may show up several times. Below are the mechanics.   

Batter tries to hold up on his swing. Plate ump, U1, does not say "Strike." Catcher appeals to plate umpire. U1 then points at the field umpire, U2. Field umpire then makes the call, ball or strike. 

While "barrel" of the bat could be used as an indicator, the plate umpire must decide on the batter's intent. Did he or she try to hit the ball? Like so many calls, the decision is judgment of the umpire.

  

             Umpire Jason in the scissors position

Working the scissors position might be a great option if you are taller than the catcher. Plus, with a partner, you won't have to spring up to make the safe/out call at 1B. More and more umpires--from MLB on down--work from the slot position.
 
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Brendan confers with skippers

Remember, sell the banger with emphasis

Take your time then add a little oomph to SELL: “You’re there, you’re there” or “Safe, safe, safe.”

Step toward the plate or the bag. Make the X  safe sign; cross your arms in front of you. Again, this shows coaches, players, and fans you are in control.



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