How to Become AN UMPIRE
If you are reading this, you are considering becoming a baseball umpire. Congratulations! You are on your way to joining one of the most rewarding avocations anywhere. We are a close knit fraternity of sorts. Umpiring is an avocation that will allow you to not only make life-long friends with a common interest but also allow you to make some extra money along the way. It's the best way I have ever found to stay close to the game I love long after I've finished playing.
Fortunately, you’ve found the site of the largest, most organized, and most talented group of baseball umpires in Central Virginia. Our umpires have worked baseball games from Little League through Major League Baseball……and everywhere in between. Our umpires work games from Farmville and Cumberland extending east through the Richmond area to the Northern Neck, No matter what level of baseball you’d like to work or where you live in the Central Virginia area, you have come to the right website to learn how to get started.
WHO IS ODUA?
Old Dominion Umpires Association is a non-profit umpiring organization whose sole responsibility is to find games for umpires to work. My name is Greg Walls and I’m the Commissioner/Assignor of the group. It’s my job to make sure umpires show up at game sites. We have an Executive Board made up of a President, Vice-President, Secretary, Commissioner/Treasurer, and four Members At Large. The board helps “guide” the group in the right direction. You can read the ODUA Constitution as well as the Policies and Procedures by clicking the links provided.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT?
First and foremost, you can expect to have fun and make great relationships. Second, we will do our part to make sure you are properly trained and learn the game from a perspective you only THOUGHT you knew. Finally, you can expect to be paid well for your efforts! ODUA has baseball “stuff”, either games or training, January through December. During the fall, we primarily focus on field work. Our umpires work college scrimmages in the area (University of Richmond and Randolph Macon) and we have evaluators training on the field. HANDS ON! This is one of the best ways for an umpire to learn where he’s supposed to be to make the right call! During the winter, we do “cage work” with pitching machines and catchers. This is the activity that allows umpires to fine tune their plate mechanics while experienced trainers are watching. January begins our official “season”. We begin monthly association meetings gearing up for the spring season. This is when the official “training class” begins for our first year umpires, but, make no mistake, those who participate in training during the fall and winter will be ahead of the curve.
The last thing you should know about “what to expect” is that you’ll need a basic understanding of how to get on the internet and how to use email. (We’ll assume that’s not an issue since you are browsing this website). All of our assignments are made via www.arbitersports.com and much of our communication is done through email.
WHAT LEVEL GAMES CAN I RECEIVE
ODUA umpires work weekend travel ball, Little League, Babe Ruth, Middle School, High School, Community College, NCAA Division 3, and NCAA Division 1. Typically, 1st year umpires work their way up through youth ball and in years 2 and 3 move into Middle School and Junior Varsity. Though this is the typical time-line for progression, you will not be held back if you excel and are a fast learner. If you are transferring in from another group, you will be evaluated as quickly as possible and will receive games based on your ability. Having a letter of transfer from your former group, stating what level of games you worked, is very helpful.
If you’ve made it this far, you might as well plunge in head first with the rest of us! Come on…you didn’t have to play the game as long as you have a basic understanding. We’ll teach you the important stuff. The only way to get started is to fill out the registration form by clicking on the link at the end of this section. You will soon be contacted by our training director and you will receive an email with a link to www.arbitersports.com. This will officially get you into our system and allow you to receive information regarding the group. Members of the Development Committee will be your primary points of contact for the first couple of years. Of course, if you have any questions relative to specific assignments, I’ll be around to answer those.
Go ahead! Push the button, fill out the registration form, and enjoy the ride! You won’t regret it. If you have any additional questions, send those to firstname.lastname@example.org.