Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A true Tribute to the 3rd Team on the Field!!

We shower them with boos and other attacks, when their calls do not go the way We in the Stands saw the pitch, or the tag on the base-runner. When their calls are similar to the way we see the play, always to our team's benefit, we sing their praises, their honesty and clear vision.

They are the umpires, the 3rd team on the field of play. Their honesty cannot be questioned, and shouldn't be, for the sake of the game. While occasionally, these judges of the game will get together, and discuss a play and the rules governing same, and perhaps change a ruling, their decency and their honesty is something which this little Indian, this Localmalcontent, regards very highly and respects.

Clearly, these men are the fully-unsung heros of Baseball. For NEVER, never is any one of their calls 100% accepted by fans, players or managers. Plenty of times, their calls, their actions are replayed dozens of times on ESPN or on CNN in very big, important games; and they do suffer the slings and arrows of their profession, to be sure. They have to be right ALL THE TIME, or their boo-boos are displayed for years, to cast mud on every one of them.

Just ask Don Dennkinger, an honest man employed to watch 1st base during game Six of the 1985 World Series. (May God forgive him... haha. Really, Mr. Dennkinger, I forgive you.)

These guys I do understand, in light of my job at a casino, and having to be judge of an instance between player and machine, or player and dealer, or player and betting-window teller. I have to make a call instantly, sometimes based upon trust, instinct, or instant-replay.

Major League Umpires don't have instant replay, or electronic device to assist them-- they must be in proper position ON EVERY PLAY to correctly call its outcome.

One of these umpires of the MLB, who is retiring as of the end of 2007 season, is Mr. Bruce Froemming. Here is his umpiring biography:

Bruce Froemming, good guy


CAREER: Became a member of the Major League staff in 1971...has worked the All-Star Game (1975, 86), Division Series (1981, 95, 96, 98, 99, 2001-03), League Championship Series (1973, 77, 80, 82, 85, 89, 91, 93, 97, 2000) and World Series (1976, 84, 88, 90, 95)...with his first game of service in 2007.

Froemming will have the longest period of consecutive years of service for an active umpire in baseball history...

worked his 5,000th Major League game on August 16, 2006 at Fenway Park, joining Klem (5,374) as the only other umpire to top 5,000 Major League games...

first game as a Major League umpire was snowed out at Shea Stadium in New York...

previously umpired in the Nebraska State League, Midwest League, Northern League, North west League, Texas League and the PCL.

PERSONAL: Bruce Neal Froemming...born on September 28, 1939 in Milwaukee, WI...resides in Florida...married Rose Marie (5/2/59)…has two children, Kevin (5/25/62) and Steve (12/30/64)…graduated from Custer High School in Milwaukee, WI (1957)…served in the United States Army…works with the Milwaukee Athletes for Childhood Cancer, the Make-a-Wish Foundation and the Humane Society…also involved in the Lombardi Golf Tournament to raise proceeds for cancer...enjoys golf and traveling in the off-season…hobbies include hunting, fishing and golf…earliest memory of baseball was watching the 1948 World Series on television…played h.s. and semi-pro baseball...enjoys hunting with his dog "Blu."

Here's wishing you a long and blessed retirement, ump!!

You are the ultimate, the high-water mark for baseball umpires from now on to try to exceed!

Thank you, Mr. Froemming for all your time, your attention to our, to God's favorite game!!



Dave said...

Great post! As much as people complain about them, there would be no baseball without competent, professional umpires.

The Localmalcontent said...

That is truth.