Umpires should be busy this month putting the final polish on their physical and mental game. Study, do quizzes and tests, have round-table study group discussions, check equipment and take care physically with some exercise to prepare for the first games. Make sure to get your minds in shape by reading parts of the rule book and CCA manual daily or once every two days. You should be excited for the season to start. All games count. By the time your first college game is two days away, will you have a list of your 2017 season goals (remember the annual meeting presentation)?
There are a lot of umpire tests at this time of the year, for college and other codes. Set your priorities based on the level of play, the game fees you receive, and the immediacy of that code’s season. Create your own study/support group to assist you and to share your knowledge with other umpires.
Are you ready with a pink shirt if the opportunity presents itself? Do you have your timing device ready if the 90-second rule for between innings is adopted? A small stop watch that can be placed on the back of your indicator should be considered. Does your attitude open doors or close them? Do you celebrate the success of others or are you jealous and full of excuses? We are all a team and should learn and celebrate the recognition that others receive, to be the best we all must work to be better.
Thank you to Vince Price and Jim Sanderson for their contributions.