Story by Jeff Gard/Total Sports Quinte
More umpires are needed for the upcoming local baseball season.
Online certification is available and would make the umpires eligible for house league with the Quinte West Amateur Baseball Association and rep with the Quinte Royals.
Anyone interested can click the link and select the Quinte Baseball clinic (number U22-60) and register before sending an e-mail money transfer to firstname.lastname@example.org for the cost of clinic which is $25 for Level One and $45 for Level Two. Further instruction will be made once registration is completed and payment is received.
Quinte Baseball’s chief umpire Bill von Boxtel said while registration by April 1 is the preferred date, extensions have been granted due to the course being online. Registration should still be completed as soon as possible, though, as the season begins in May.
Anyone who was previously an umpire prior to COVID shutdowns and haven’t since returned can come back and start at their previous level, van Boxtel noted.
Ages 13 years and up are welcome to take the umpiring course. It’s a great way to earn some extra money throughout the summer months.
“The more games they do, the more they can make especially as they continue to complete their training,” van Boxtel said.
Van Boxtel said there are great house league and rep teams in the Quinte area, for anyone who might be concerned about the aggravation associated with being an umpire.
“Sometimes people are afraid to be an umpire because they’re afraid they’re going to be yelled at or whatever, but the Quinte organization has excellent coaches that understand people are developing and learning to umpire,” he remarked.
Using the same approach he had as a coach, van Boxtel said he puts umpires in a position to succeed. For instance, younger umpires will work with appropriate age groups.
He’ll also match newer umpires when possible with mentors so they can learn from someone who has experience in the role. van Boxtel is always available to assist as well.
“I’ll always be constructive with umpires if they have questions about things or if there’s something I can tell them to help them along,” he said.
With some longtime umpires having moved on, it’s important to get new ones involved. Sometimes people decide not to become umpires because they don’t feel they can give enough of a time commitment due to other jobs or just a busy schedule.
He would encourage them to give it a shot anyway as umpires use an app to put in their availability and not accept games when they aren’t able to.
“Sometimes those people that can only do a few games, it still helps,” van Boxtel said.
Anyone with questions can direct them to van Boxtel by sending a message through the quintewestball.ca website or through email@example.com.