Notes from the Training Staff – October 2018

Beginning with October all Monthly Tests will be posted early in each month.  Each test will expire on the last day of the respective month.
New bat list posted September 19, 2018.  Make sure all games are played with this new bat list.  The 2019 NCAA Softball Case Book has been published.  There is a link on our Locker Room for quick access to both of these items.  Reminder…on the Dashboard page of our Locker Room, scroll down toward the bottom of the page and you will see a Links button.
A new interpretation has been posted by the SUP on the pitcher taking the signal from the pitcher’s plate, “Rule 10.2 – Taking the Signal – Interpretations”.  This interpretation has been posted to our Locker Room in the Rules Corner, Pitching section.
From our SUP Regional Advisor, Jim Sanderson
There seems to be some confusion about using the optional position for U3 on the 3B side or left field side of 2B.  The position is not to get a better look at a LH batter for the check swing…
To see Jim’s entire explanation, go to the Mechanics Corner of our Locker Room.  It is posted in the Three-umpire specific section.
D1 postseason will use 4 umpires.  The mechanics will be released in December.  This gives more umpires opportunity and the game will be better served.
Biases When Calling Balls and Strikes
Have you read the interesting article in the Mechanics Corner (subsection Plate then Pitches) Biases When Calling Balls and Strikes?  An additional study is cited on how umpires may unconsciously, or perhaps compassionately, allow themselves to be influenced by the count on the batter when determining balls and strikes.  Do we have an unconscious “mercy rule” which causes us to call strike one instead of ball four, and ball when instead of strike three?  It is a short article and worth contemplating before your next plate game.
A few mechanics updates have been posted to the Arbiter SUP Home Plate website.  You can find them in a new posting to the Locker Room in the Mechanics Corner/All Umpires section.
Here are some of the topics discussed at the SUP Umpire Institute held in Oklahoma City in September:
We have asked our SUP Regional Adviser to give us a brief overview for each of these so it can be posted on our Locker Room.
  • Goals and expectations from the NCAA/SUP
  • Rules clarifications/discussions
  • Crewmanship & Verbal Communication
  • Stations: Wedge/Tag plays, Chasing/force plays/communication, Plate Stations 1 & 2
  • Situational Mechanics
  • Slow the Gane Down – Ryan Harrison
  • Post season review and Coach/umpire relationship building
  • WSWC umpire panel
  • Non-working postseason UIC panel
  • What’s next?