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Posted by Lynn Beesecker at Jun 30, 2009 5:00PM PDT ( 0 Comments )

     Sec. 1 – The President shall preside at all Membership and Executive Committee Meetings; shall preserve order therein; shall countersign all warrants for money; shall appoint all committees listed in the Constitutions and By-Laws; shall give the deciding vote in case of a tie except for the election of an officer and shall render assistance and counsel as may be required or requested by any member or Committee in the promotional or administrative activities of this Organization.
     Sec. 2 – The Vice-President shall assist the President in conducting all meetings.  The Vice-President shall assume the responsibility for conducting the duties of President during his/her absence or shall be installed as the President of this Association when necessary to fill an unexpired term of the President elect.
     The Vice-President shall maintain proper conduct among members and shall act as the advisor in guiding the activities and the interests of the membership.
     Sec. 3 – There shall be a Secretary/Treasurer who shall discharge the duties of Secretary and Treasurer, who shall have a single vote on the Executive Committee or otherwise.  The President shall appoint an Active Member to act in the place of the Secretary/Treasurer at any business or membership meeting where the Secretary/Treasurer is not in attendance.  In the event of a temporary inability of the Secretary/Treasurer to discharge the duties of the office, the President may appoint an Active Member to assume the office until such time as the Secretary/Treasurer is able to resume the office.  
     The Secretary/Treasurer shall receive as compensation for each term of office dues-free membership and/or such other compensation as recommended by the Executive Committee and approved by majority of the membership attending any meeting.  Said compensation shall be for the coming calendar year and each succeeding year until changed by recommendation of the Executive Committee and approval by the membership as above.  Said compensation shall not limit the right to seek  reimbursement for expenses incurred in discharge of the office.
     Sec. 4 - Any Officer who is absent from two (2) consecutive meetings and cannot submit a justifiable reason to the Executive Committee will be subject to possible removal from office. In case of such removal, the Executive Committee shall appoint a successor who shall serve the remainder of the term of office unless otherwise removed.
     Sec. 5 -  In the case of a vacancy in the offices of Vice President or Treasurer/Secretary, the Executive Committee shall appoint a successor to fill the remainder of the unexpired term.
     Sec. 1 -To qualify as a candidate for an office, the nominee must have been an Active member in good standing for four (4) or more consecutive years in this Organization. The Candidate for President shall, in addition, have served at least one full previous term as an officer or a member of the Executive Committee.
          Sec. 4 - When a member is nominated by the nominating committee or from the floor, he/she shall declare his/her acceptance of the nomination before his/her name can appear on the ballot. 
     Sec. 5 – The election of officers shall be held at the last Business Meeting of the year. The election shall be conducted in accord with the procedures in Article IV, Sec. 2 of the Constitution.
     Sec. 6 - Only Active and Inactive Members in good standing at the time of the election shall be entitled to vote.
     Sec. 1 -The dues for annual membership in this Organization shall be approved by a majority vote of the membership. 
The Organization dues include the registration fee for the annual membership with the NEW YORK STATE BASEBALL UMPIRES ASSOCIATION, INC.  for all members.
     Sec. 2 -The annual Organization membership dues for the ensuing year shall be payable on or before the last Business Meeting of the year.  All dues must be made payable to OCBUA.  No other membership dues will be required of any member. Where necessary to defray the costs of obtaining assignments for members to other than High School games, an additional fee may be charged to any member voluntarily seeking such assignments.
     Sec. 3 – Any fees required for assignment to other than High School games shall be paid in advance in an amount and manner determined by the President, or designee with approval of the President.
     Sec. 1 - The scale of minimum umpire fees per official for High School games shall be as provided in the Section 9 High School Rules.
     Sec. 2 – The scale of umpire fees for other than High School games shall be as obtained/negotiated by the member(s) designated under Article IV, Sec. 2 of the Constitution, with the approval of the President. 
     Sec. 1 – All umpiring assignments must be made by the High School assignor or the member(s) designated by the President.
     Sec. 2 – Officials of this Organization may umpire both baseball and softball games.  If however, a baseball umpiring assignment from the OCBUA is refused and the member accepts an umpiring assignment from any other organization on the same day, said member may be suspended until his case is heard by the Executive Committee and a decision is rendered.
     Sec. 3 – An Active Member of this Organization will be permitted to umpire ball games only with approved umpires properly assigned.  A member shall be permitted to officiate with any Active member from this or any other Certified Umpires Chapter or with active umpires in professional rank or with an applicant registered with this Organization.  Any deviation from this Section for special cases must be reviewed and approved by the Executive Committee.
     Sec. 5 – No member of this Organization shall be permitted to accept an assignment which would require him/her to officiate with a non-approved umpire.
     Sec. 6 – Once a member has accepted an assignment, it becomes his/her responsibility to assure the fulfillment of said assignment.  In an emergency, when it becomes impossible for the member to carry out the assignment, the committed member must seek to be replaced as  prescribed by the assignor.
     Sec. 1 – No member shall represent this Organization beyond the privileges and provisions of the constitution and By-Laws in any affairs or administrative matters unless authorized by the Executive Committee.
     Sec. 2 – No member shall solicit games or contact coaches, managers, athletic directors, schools, league officers or directors, teams or players for personal or Organization gains unless specifically authorized by the Executive Committee or President.  Furthermore, if any member of this Organization is contacted directly by any of the aforementioned or any others for the purpose of soliciting officiating services, it shall be reported to the Executive Committee.
     Sec. 3 – No officer, committee member or Organization member shall involve or obligate this Organization in any indebtedness unless he/she is given explicit authorization by the Executive Committee or President.  Such infraction shall be considered a flagrant violation of Organization Rules and Regulations.
     Sec. 4 – No member of this Organization shall officiate and/or accept a game for less than the scale of fees established for the level of ball.
     Sec. 5 – No member of this Organization shall officiate in OCBUA territory a game for any organized league or for any individual team except through the OCBUA if to do so would deprive any other member of the opportunity for assignment through the OCBUA.
     Sec. 6 – A member is guilty of misconduct when he/she has committed any transgression against Section 1 through 5 of this Article or has committed one or more of the following infractions:
1.       Failure to fulfill an accepted assignment..
2.       Displaying discourtesy toward a fellow member either on or off the diamond in any activity concerning this Organization.
3.       Committing disrespectful or discourteous deeds which may result in harmful refection against this Organization or anyone of its Officers or members.
4.       Commenting or participating in any team affairs or player affairs while on the diamond in the capacity of the umpire.
5.       Failure to appear in time to start the game as scheduled.
6.       Failure to maintain standard appearance regarding the uniform and equipment and the neatness of both.
7.       Wagering or gambling on any game under contract to OCBUA or NEW YORK STATE BASEBALL UMPIRES ASSOCIATION, INC. or any of NYSBUA, INC. member groups, its course or its players, shall be prohibited, and shall be considered a flagrant violation.
8.       Drinking alcohol before or during the game or appearing for a game under the influence of alcohol or drugs, which shall be considered a flagrant violation.
9.       Discussing or commenting on confidential administrative matters of this Organization with nonconcerned outside personnel.
10.   Improper conduct while in uniform before and during officiating a game (such as smoking, mingling with fans, obscene language) and conduct unbecoming to an umpire while representing this Organization in off-the-diamond business affairs.
     Sec. 7 – Members of this Organization who are also members of any other officiating group may not wear the New York State Baseball umpiring uniform while officiating those contests, unless assigned through the OCBUA.
1.       To strive to improve knowledge through continuous study of the rules.
2.       To take the Federation exam each year and achieve the qualifying grade according to rank.
3.       To accept officiating assignments only through the designated assignor.
4.       To keep self in good physical condition so as to be able to properly officiate.  OCBUA recommends regular physicals.
5.       To be governed by the Organization’s regulations regarding uniforms and mechanics of officiating.
     Sec. 9 – DRESS CODE
The dress code for summer ball (non High School) will be set by the Executive Committee, President or designee. 
Anyone deviating from this code may be subject to discipline.
     Sec. 1 – A member may be censured, fined, reduced to Probationary status, suspended for a period of time and/or expelled for violation of the Constitution or By-Laws or rules of this Organization, or for conduct manifestly prejudicial to the best interest of this Organization.  Where a fine is imposed, the amount shall be based on the then established varsity game fee.
     Sec. 2 – Any member of this Organization shall have the right to bring charges, in writing, against any other member of this Organization for alleged violations of any section of this Constitution or any By-Laws or rules, with the exception of violations of Sections 9 or 10 of this Article which shall be the duty of the Secretary.
     Sec. 3 – Any member so charged shall be informed of the charges levied against him/her and the name of the member placing the charges.
     Sec. 4 – Any alleged transgression, other than those originating with the Executive Committee, will be referred to a Hearing Committee of peers composed of certified members in good standing appointed by the President.  The Committee shall meet and hold a hearing at which the member charged may appear and present any information or witnesses he/she may choose and which the Committee finds relevant.  The Committee finding will be forwarded to the member and to the president for execution.  If the member is not satisfied with the finding, said member may appeal to the Executive Committee, in writing, within ten (10) days of being sent written notification of findings.  Before any vote by the Executive Committee in this matter, the member shall be given the opportunity to appear before the Executive Committee in his/her own defense or to be represented by a member, in good standing, of this Organization.  The Executive Committee may limit its consideration to the information presented in the finding of the Hearing Committee or may receive further information as it deems appropriate.   A two-thirds (2/3) majority of the Executive Committee is required to find a member guilty of the charges brought against him/her and the Committee decision shall be final.
     Sec. 5 – Should charges be levied against any officer or Executive Committee member of this Organization, his/her case shall be referred to the Executive Committee for determination.  Said officer or Executive Committee member shall not be allowed to vote or act as a member of the Executive Committee during the hearing of the charges against him/her.
     Sec. 6 – All hearings must be conducted fairly, openly and honestly.  The Hearing Committee or Executive Committee, as the case may be, shall advise the member of the charge in advance of the hearing.  The hearing shall be limited to the charge so specified.  A record shall be made of the date and place of the hearing, those present, a summary of the information presented, and the finding of the Committee, which shall be based on the information presented at the hearing.  (If the Committee holding the hearing deems that further information is necessary it shall continue the hearing at a subsequent date and shall apprise the member of the nature of the information and give the member an appropriate opportunity to respond.)
     Sec. 7 – Failure to appear at any hearing for which member is notified in writing shall be cause for expulsion.
     Sec. 8  - A member who fails to pay his/her membership dues by the day of the last Business Meeting shall be automatically suspended.  Such delinquent member may be reinstated provided a fine, as prescribed is paid.  The fine, as well as the regular dues, must be paid before the Executive Committee will allow any consideration for reinstatement.  Failure on the part of such delinquent member to apply for reinstatement within thirty (30) days after written notification of the suspension shall cause the member to be automatically dropped from membership in this Organization, subject to review by the Executive Committee.
     Sec. 10 – All provisions of an imposed penalty must be met prior to a member being reconsidered as a member in good standing and being allowed to officiate as a representative of OCBUA.
     Sec. 11 – Any member who has been assessed a penalty and fails to meet the reinstatement conditions as prescribed in this Article will be subjected to indefinite suspension.  Such member may be removed from the Organization’s membership rolls by action of the Executive Committee and he/she may apply for reinstatement only by submitting an application for membership as a new applicant.
     Sec. 12 – If the penalty assessed to any member, for a transgression of this Constitution or By-Laws or rules of this Organization, is expulsion, such member shall have the right to have his/her circumstances heard and reviewed before an open meeting of the entire membership.  He/She can, at this meeting, represent him/herself or he/she can be represented by an Active Member in good standing of this Organization.  A majority vote of the membership present at the meeting is required to sustain the penalty imposed by the Executive Committee.  The action taken by the membership at this meeting shall be final and binding on all parties.
     Sec. 13 – Any member charged with a crime shall voluntarily suspend him/herself until the matter can be reviewed by the Executive Committee.  The Committee will determine whether or not the member should continue to be temporarily suspended.  Such suspension shall be in effect until the charges are disposed of, and at that time the Committee will either re-instate the member or hold a hearing to determine further action with regard to membership status or penalty or both.
     If an Applicant for membership in OCBUA has been convicted of a crime, then the Executive Committee has the option to deny membership upon that ground without need of a hearing.
     Sec. 1 – At least fifty-one (51%) of the Active membership shall present to constitute a quorum at any business meeting.
     Sec. 2 - At least fifty-one (51%) of the members of the Executive Committee shall be present to constitute a quorum at any executive Committee meeting.
By Laws adopted on: March, 2005

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Posted by Lynn Beesecker at Apr 14, 2009 5:00PM PDT ( 0 Comments )

Continuation of Strike Zone Time line................. 

1988 - "The Strike Zone is that area over home plate the upper limit of which is a horizontal line at the midpoint between the top of the shoulders and the top of the uniform pants, and the lower level is a line at the top of the knees. The Strike Zone shall be determined from the batter's stance as the batter is prepared to swing at a pitched ball."

1969 - "The Strike Zone is that space over home plate which is between the batter's armpits and the top of his knees when he assumes a natural stance. The umpire shall determine the Strike Zone according to the batter's usual stance when he swings at a pitch."

1963 - "The Strike Zone is that space over home plate which is between the top of the batter's shoulders and his knees when he assumes his natural stance. The umpire shall determine the Strike Zone according to the batter's usual stance when he swings at a pitch."

1957 - "A strike is a legal pitch when so called by the umpire which (a) is struck at by the batter and is missed; (b) enters the Strike Zone in flight and is not struck at; (c) is fouled by the batter when he has less than two strikes at it; (d) is bunted foul; (e) touches the batter as he strikes at it; (f) touches the batter in flight in the Strike Zone; or (g) becomes a foul tip. Note: (f) was added to the former rule and definition."

1950 - "The Strike Zone is that space over home plate which is between the batter's armpits and the top of his knees when he assumes his natural stance."

1910 - "With the bases unoccupied, any ball delivered by the pitcher while either foot is not in contact with the pitcher's plate shall be called a ball by the umpire."

1907 - "A fairly delivered ball is a ball pitched or thrown to the bat by the pitcher while standing in his position and facing the batsman that passes over any portion of the home base, before touching the ground, not lower than the batsman's knee, nor higher than his shoulder. For every such fairly delivered ball, the umpire shall call one strike.
"An unfairly delivered ball is a ball delivered to the bat by the pitcher while standing in his position and facing the batsman that does not pass over any portion of the home base between the batsman's shoulder and knees, or that touches the ground before passing home base, unless struck at by the batsman. For every unfairly delivered ball the umpire shall call one ball."

1901 - "A foul hit ball not caught on the fly is a strike unless two strikes have already been called." (NOTE: Adopted by National League in 1901; American League in 1903)

 1899 - "A foul tip by the batter, caught by the catcher while standing within the lines of his position is a strike."

1894 - "A strike is called when the batter makes a foul hit, other than a foul tip, while attempting a bunt hit that falls or rolls upon foul ground between home base and first or third bases."

1887 - "The batter can no longer call for a 'high' or 'low' pitch.
"A (strike) is defined as a pitch that 'passes over home plate not lower than the batsman's knee, nor higher than his shoulders.'"

1876 - "The batsman, on taking his position, must call for a 'high,' 'low,' or 'fair' pitch, and the umpire shall notify the pitcher to deliver the ball as required; such a call cannot be changed after the first pitch is delivered."
High - pitches over the plate between the batter's waist and shoulders
Low - pitches over the plate between the batter's waist and at least one foot from the ground.
Fair - pitches over the plate between the batter's shoulders and at least one foot from the ground

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Posted by Lynn Beesecker at Apr 14, 2009 5:00PM PDT ( 0 Comments )

Continuation of Umpire Time Line........................... 

1879 - National League president William A. Hulbert appointed a group of 20 men from which teams could choose an umpire, therefore becoming baseball's first umpiring staff.

1879 - Umpires were given the authority to impose fines for illegal acts.

1882 - National League umpire Richard Higham became the only major league umpire ever expelled from the game after the League judged him guilty of collusion with gamblers.

1885 - Umpires began wearing chest protectors for the first time.

1901 - Thomas Connolly umpired the first game in the American League between Cleveland and Chicago on April 24.

1903 - Hank O'Day and Thomas Connolly worked the first modern World Series between the Boston Pilgrims and Pittsburgh Pirates.

1906 - William Evans, at 22 years old, became the youngest umpire in major league history.

1909 - The four-umpire system was employed for the first time in the World Series.

1910 - The umpire organizational chart was established. The plate umpire was appointed the umpire-in-chief and the others were field umpires.

1910 - Chicago Cubs manager Frank Chance became the first person ejected from a World Series game when umpire Thomas Connolly threw him out for protesting a home run call.

1911 - Bill Dinneen worked as an umpire in the World Series and became the first person to play and umpire in the Fall Classic. Dinneen played for the Boston Pilgrims in the 1903 Series.

1912 - Both the American and National Leagues had 10 person umpiring staffs with two umpires being used in games and two reserves.

1921 - Umpires in both leagues began the practice of rubbing mud into the balls prior to each game in order to remove the gloss.

1933 - Bill Dinneen, Bill Klem, Bill McGowan and Cy Rigler umpired the first All-Star Game at Comiskey Park in Chicago.

1935 - George Barr of the National League opened the first umpire training school in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

1939 - The Bill McGowan School for Umpires opened.

1941 - Bill Klem, the oldest umpire in major league history at 68, retired from umpiring after working a record 37 seasons and became the National League's first modern chief of umpires.

1946 - Bill McKinley became the first graduate of an umpiring training school to reach the major leagues.

1947 - In the 1947 World Series, featuring the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Yankees, the current six-man crew was established as an alternate umpire was stationed along each foul line.

1950 - Umpires were no longer allowed to levy fines for illegal acts as that was to be handled by each League president.

1951 - Emmett Ashford became an umpire in the Southwestern International League and became the first black professional umpire.

1952 - The four-man umpiring crew was instituted for all regular season games.

1953 - Thomas Connolly and Bill Klem became the first umpires inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

1956 - Ed Rommel and Frank Umont broke a long-standing taboo by becoming the first umpires to wear eyeglasses on the field.

1966 - Emmett Ashford became the first black umpire in the major leagues when he reached the American League after 14 seasons in the minor leagues.

1970 - The first strike by umpires in major league history lasted one day during the League Championship Series. This action prompted both the American and National League presidents to recognize the newly-formed Major League Umpires Association and negotiate a labor contract with them.

1972 - Bernice Gera became the first woman to umpire a professional baseball game when she worked a Class A New York-Penn League game.

1973 - Art Williams became the first black umpire to reach the National League staff.

1974 - Armando Rodriguez became the first Hispanic umpire to work in the major leagues as he joined the American League staff.

1979 - Major league umpires went on strike for the third time in history from Opening Day until May 18. Replacement umpires were used during this strike.

1991 - Steve Palermo, an American League umpire, suffered a career-ending gunshot wound while attempting to prevent the robbery of two women.

1996 - National League umpire John McSherry collapsed during an Opening Day game in Cincinnati and passed away after being rushed to a nearby hospital.

1997 - Mike DiMuro became the first American umpire to work a regular season game in the Japanese Leagues.

1998 - Harry and Hunter Wendelstedt became the first father-son umpire combination to work a major league game together.

2000 - On February 24, the World Umpires Association ("WUA") was certified as the exclusive collective bargaining agent for all regular full-time major league umpires.

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Posted by Lynn Beesecker at Aug 4, 2008 5:00PM PDT ( 0 Comments )

Professional Rules Changes Since the 1850's.

Umpiring Timeline

1876 - William McLean, from Philadelphia, became the first professional umpire when he umpired the first game in National League history between Boston and Philadelphia on April 22.

1878 - The National League instructed home teams to pay umpires $5 per game. here for more.

 The MLB Strike Zone: A historical timeline (from the MLB site)

1996 - The Strike Zone is expanded on the lower end, moving from the top of the knees to the bottom of the knees. here for more.

A little known fact... The first testicular guard (cup) was used in baseball in 1874 and the first helmet was used in 1934. To some this proves it took 60 years for men to realize that the brain is also important.