• September 23rd, 2014

    Umpire Camps and Clinics: Can They Help Me?

    "Continuing educations shows, and it is only as you improve that you will ascend the ladder of umpiring." - Tony Thompson Are you a novice umpire? Or do you remember when you were a "rookie?" Maybe you worked enough recreation or Little League games to know that you really had an interest in officiating baseball. You find yourself watching the… Read Article

  • April 28th, 2005

    2005 Southern Umpires Camp — Part VI

    Final thoughtsAlan RoperApril 28th, 2005 If you are one of those guys who every time someone offers you a pointer you say, “I do such and such because…,” don’t waste your money going to the Southern Umpires Camp. (Or any other camp.) You will only piss off the other students and make life miserable for them. If you are a guy who can… Read Article

  • April 18th, 2005

    2005 Southern Umpires Camp — Part V

    Balls and strikesAlan Roper Jerry Crawford and Richie Garcia were everything I had heard … and then some. They were blunt, honest, hands-on, and they learned our names. But what struck me was their attitude toward the campers and toward instruction. They focused on the basics but didn’t make an umpire feel like a complete idiot. Quality instruction My group worked… Read Article

  • April 7th, 2005

    2005 Southern Umpires Camp — Part IV

    Situational baseballAlan Roper Fungo drills Last fall one of my articles highlighted a technique called "situational football" that Bill Belichick, coach of the New England Patriots, uses to teach football players to think. I never thought about applying that thought process to the diamond. At camp we did just that, and I learned a valuable lesson. When I played, "situations" were a part of the practice almost… Read Article

  • March 28th, 2005

    2005 Southern Umpires Camp — Part III

    Don't backpedal!Alan Roper The most important lesson I learned at camp was not the first lesson I learned. The most important lesson I learned: Don’t backpedal across the working area of the infield. At best, it is just wrong; at worst, you trip, fall down, and tear your MCL, ACL and your meniscus. You end up on the DL,  possibly for the year. Yes,… Read Article

  • March 21st, 2005

    2005 Southern Umpires Camp — Part II

    Rules Alan Roper The Southern Umpires Camp is divided into three areas of instruction: rules, base mechanics, and plate mechanics. Paul Nauert, MLB #96, is the primary instructor for the rules and base mechanics segments. Jerry Crawford, MLB #2, and Richie Garcia, Umpire Supervisor for MLB, were responsible for the plate mechanics. After check-in on Thursday afternoon, the evening session… Read Article

  • March 16th, 2005

    2005 Southern Umpires Camp — Part I

    You want to do what? Alan Roper As President and Chairman of the Board for the Baseball Umpires of Northwest Arkansas, Inc., I set out a number of goals for our organization for 2005. One of those goals was to increase the training level and opportunities for our members. Kevin Causey, AAA umpire and member of our organization, recommended the Southern and International Camps inAtlanta, GA. I did a… Read Article