The purpose of this manual is to establish a written set of policies and guidelines to assist all Louisiana Dixie Youth Umpires.
The Louisiana Dixie Youth Umpire Association was originally established in 1982 to help better train DYB Umpires and to establish a system to create fairness in officiating tournament games. Methods used in training umpires have included clinics, tests and films. It is hoped that a written set of policies concerning rules and procedures will help eliminate inconsistencies, when possible, in rule interpretation and in officiating games.
State Umpire in Chief:
The Louisiana Dixie Youth UIC is a professional position involving the management of the Louisiana Dixie Youth Umpires. This position will work with the District Directors and District UICs to certify umpires and collect payment of fees associated with certification. The position is responsible for the finances of the umpire association. This position is responsible for the assignment of umpires for all state tournament locations and games. The State UIC will meet with the State Director to determine umpire recommendations to the DYB World Series. The Louisiana Dixie Youth State UIC will serve concurrent terms with the State and District Directors and shall be appointed after the elections of the District Directors at the state board meeting. The State UIC will serve as an official board member of Louisiana Dixie Youth and shall have voting rights with the state board. At the discretion of the State UIC, the State UIC may appoint Assistant State UIC(s) to assist him/her in fulfilling the responsibilities of the position.
District Umpire in Chief:
The District UIC shall be appointed by the District Director and will work and assist both the District Director and State UIC. The District UIC is responsible for assisting with umpire certification and assigning umpires for sub-district and district tournament games subject to the approval of the District Director.
LOUISIANA DYB UMPIRE CERTIFICATION:
Only umpires that certify with the Louisiana Dixie Youth Umpires Association will be eligible to umpire postseason games at the sub-district, district, regional and state levels. Certified umpires will receive a DYB Umpire Cap, DYB Rule Book and DYB Patch. Please read the DYB Rule Book every year regardless of how many years of experience; you can always learn something new or gain a better understanding of a rule or rule interpretation. Knowing the rules will serve you best on the field as an umpire.
UMPIRE ASSIGNMENT FOR TOURNAMENT GAMES:
With AAA, Minors, Majors and O Zone tournament games, no umpire will be assigned as Plate Umpire if a team from that umpire’s local league or hometown is playing. No League President will be allowed to umpire in a tournament that his/her league is hosting. No umpire shall be assigned a tournament game in which they have a son or daughter playing.
Sub-District and District Tournament Games:
The District UIC will assign all umpires for the sub-district and district tournament games with the approval of the District Director.
Regional and State Level Tournament Games:
The State UIC will select umpires to officiate at the regional and state tournaments with the approval of the State Director. The State UIC, if present, will assign umpires for all regional and state tournament games. If the State UIC cannot be present, the State UIC will appoint an UIC to be his designee for that tournament.
Shoes – Black shoes with black shoestrings (May have some white on the shoes). No metal spikes allowed.
Socks – Black or Navy in color. No “no show” socks.
Pants – Heather Gray or Charcoal Gray in color with belt loops.
Belt – Black in color.
Shirt & Undershirt – 3-button style, pull-over umpire shirt with matching undershirt. Your umpire crew partners should have matching umpire shirts and undershirts.
Caps – Plate umpire should provide their own plate cap which should be solid black or navy in color; insignias are allowed as long as they are related to DYB. Field umpires should wear the cap received through certification or cap provided by tournament host. Field umpire caps should match. All caps including plate umpire cap will be worn with visor facing forward.
Jewelry & Cell Phones – No jewelry or cell phones are allowed on the field except for wedding bands. Do not wear a watch on the field.
Plate Umpire – Should provide own plate gear which shall include mask with attached throat guard unless hockey style, chest protector, shin guards, a protective cup, ball bag(s), indicator and plate brush.
Field Umpire – Shall have a flag, red or yellow in color, to signal a runner leaving the base early (No flags are needed in O Zone). Make sure the flag is all the way in your pocket and does not show; also, make sure all crew members have the same color flag. At least one of the field umpires shall have an indicator to assist plate umpire with ball/strike count.
Umpires are official representatives of Dixie Youth Baseball and their conduct is expected to be the very best on and off the playing field.
UMPIRE PRE-GAME MEETING WITH CREW:
The UIC of the umpire crew for that game needs to meet with his/her partner(s) to discuss signals, rotation, fair/foul ruling, catch/no catch and tag responsibilities, etc.
ON FIELD PROCEDURES:
Entering/Leaving the Playing Field:
The umpire crew needs to enter and leave the field together as a crew. When leaving the field, if a neutral exit is not available, either exit through the winning team’s dugout or the exit closest to the umpire dressing room.
Upon entering the field, introduce yourselves to the managers and coaches and ask permission to inspect the team equipment including bats, batting helmets and catching equipment. Also, remind the coaches to make sure his players are properly equipped (Ex – catcher has to have cup, no jewelry). If it is the team’s first game of the tournament, have a pre-game meeting with the managers to go over any ground rules, sportsmanship, fake bunt/hit away tactic. The UIC conducts the pre-game; at the end, the UIC needs to ask for any additional comments from the umpire crew and ask if managers have any questions.
During the Game:
Hustle on the field so you can get in the correct or best possible position to make your calls. Remember to try not to make a call while moving; right before the ball arrives, stop, get set and make your call. Do not rush your call, especially on an out call. Make sure you see the entire play. On a close play, be confident and sell your call. Between innings, plate umpire should be up the third or first base line from home plate; field umpires should go to the outfield or down the lines in foul territory. Do not carry on a conversation with the fans; be courteous and answer questions if asked, then go to your area away from everyone. Also, try not to meet with your crew between innings unless necessary, especially after an inning involving a controversial call. Do not retrieve bats or foul balls.
QUESTIONING UMPIRE CALLS:
Only the manager can question a call. Make the manager request time and the UIC for that game grants time; the manager should go through the UIC first, and then to the umpire that made the call to discuss the situation. Do not let the coach come running and screaming onto the field. Remember, the coach is already upset, the umpire has to be the voice of calm and reason; do not let the discussion become personal; stay calm and respectful. If you need to ask for help, request all of the crew to meet to discuss the play without any managers or coaches. The main thing is to get the call right. After you have allowed the coach to discuss the call, tell the coach to return to dugout or coach’s box and let’s play ball. Balls and strikes cannot be questioned. Also, do not go looking for trouble and do not call attention to yourself.
All protest goes to the Tournament Director. At the District level, it will be the District Director or a designee. At the State level, it will be the State Director or a designee.
Do not take an “over the fence” home run away from a kid. If you cannot lie, do not look, or you tell the batter/runner to come back to touch a base. Do not take a home run away.
- Remember that as a DYB Umpire, your top priority is player safety.
- Always be well dressed on the field: clothes pressed and not wrinkled, shoes shined.
- Know your rotations and get in the correct position to make your call.
- Make your calls and signals crisp and clean with confidence.
- Looking the part, hustle and being in the right position is half the battle, and it will keep you out of trouble more times than not.
- Always learn. Learn from your partners and watching how other umpires handle themselves and handle situations.