Online Referee Training and Career Center

Welcome to How To Become A Referee! We have everything you need to make your life easier as you begin your career as a referee. State specific training requirements, a step-by-step hiring process, potential employers and interviews to help you get hired are just some of the helpful things you'll find here.

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Baseball Umpire Grades

Little League Umpire

Level:

Player age: (5-12)
1. Tee Ball and Minor 5-8 & 9-12
2. Little League Baseball 9-12

Authorization/Recommendation:

– Get in contact with local Little League regional office.
– Start off by attending a local class or training program for umpires.
– Getting a basic education on the rules, signals, and positioning.
– After attending a few association meetings officials may be ready to join an organization.
– The Little League organization often hosts a national Little League umpire school that officials can attend.

Major requirements:

– Official will need to submit an online application.
– A registration fee is must.
– A background check – Organisations look for child abuse reports and any domestic violence reports.

Minor requirements:

– Min. Age – 18
– Umpire equipment. This may include uniforms, stop-watches, whistles, flags or cards, and shoes.
– Little League rule book.
– Good health and fitness.

Links:

http://www.littleleague.org/umpires/umpireclinics.htm
http://www.littleleague.org/umpires/UmpRegistry.htm

Babe Ruth Umpire

Level:

– Player age (13-18)
– Babe Ruth Leagues

Authorization/Recommendation:

– Accustomed to local youth recreational leagues. It’s a more advanced youth league with older players.
– Join the National Umpires Association (or NUA), it is one of the largest umpire associations nationwide and was inaugurated by Babe Ruth League, Inc.
– After applying for membership, officials will be sent a baseball rule book and exam (they also offer a softball version) that must be completed prior to umpiring.
– Become eligible to be selected as a member of the World Series umpiring staff.

Major requirements:

– Official will need to submit an online application.
– A registration fee is must.
– Require to take an umpire test to become certified.
– A background check – Organisations look for child abuse reports and any domestic violence reports.

Minor requirements:

– Min. Age – 18
– Umpire equipment. This may include uniforms, stop-watches, whistles, flags or cards, and shoes.
– Good health and fitness.

Links:

http://www.umpireschoolhq.com/how-to-become-a-babe-ruth-umpire
http://nuaumpiresusa.org/

High School Umpire

Level:

– Middle school
– Freshman
– Junior varsity
– Varsity
– Player Age:
1. Junior League Baseball 13-14
2. Senior League Baseball 14-16
3. Big League Baseball 16-18

Authorization/Recommendation:

– To get started, officials should join local umpire association. The local umpire officials association hosts a series of lectures and educational events where umpires can learn about the basics of umpiring, local rules and regulations.
– The majority of high school districts will have a specific umpire association, officials need to join and attend meetings for.
– Officials will also need to learn the rules established by their governing board.
– Sign up for umpire clinics and training events to learn umpire mechanics and best practices.
– Learn the rules governing high school baseball throughout the country. These are published by the National Federation of State High School Associations.
– To be a certified referee, officials must take an online, open-book rules examination and pass the written multiple-choice exam tests.
– Complete the organization’s sponsored training programs for high school umpiring, including taking and passing the group’s certification test.
– Certification is not required to umpire sub-varsity games (i.e. middle school, freshman and JV). However it is not recommended that you attempt to do this. All of the same high school rules that apply to varsity games apply to the sub-varsity levels too. Attempting to umpire sub-varsity games without training in a high school game using NFHS rules is foolish at best.
– It is highly recommended (not required) that official who plan to successfully umpire high school games have a firm understanding of the game and some minimal umpiring experience. It suggests that officials work some games in youth leagues (i.e. Little League or Babe Ruth) first and attend a mechanics clinic before attempting to umpire a high school game.
– Having a mentor who has done this before is the best way to get best result.
– There are a number of umpire associations that are relatively inexpensive and offer resources for finding jobs. One of the largest is the National Association of Sports Officials (NASO). There is also the Amateur Baseball Umpires’ Association (ABUA). These groups offer certifications, trainings and a connection to other umpires.

Major requirements:

– Official will need to submit an online application.
– A registration fee is must.
– Many leagues will require to take an umpire test to become certified.
– Back Ground Check – Undergo a criminal background investigation.
– Must submit a copy of the Concussion Training Certificate of Completion before allowed to officiate.

Minor requirements:

– Min. Age – 18
– Must have an email address.
– The referee must be physically fit.
– Umpire equipment. This may include uniforms, stop-watches, whistles, flags or cards, and shoes.

Links:

http://www.umpire.org/
http://www.naso.org/

College Baseball Umpire

Level:

The general track for getting to the college level is starting out:
1. Freshman/JV games
2. Then moving up to 1A-3A varsity games
3. Then getting some 4A-5A JV
4. Then 4A-5A varsity
5. Then getting assigned consistently to the very good 4A-5A games
6. Then, if the Board thinks officials are ready, they might get some college assignments

Authorization/Recommendation:

– The Collegiate Baseball Umpires Association requires members to have at least five years of high school experience.
– An active member of an accredited board of high school umpires.
– Some local collegiate associations will accept minor league experience or even just graduation from a professional umpire school.
– Umpiring at the collegiate level is more competitive, and requirements, training and testing vary among the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) and National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

Major requirements:

Official will need to pass the written NCAA rules exam and on-field mechanics test.

Minor requirements:

– Min. Age – 18
– Must have an email address.
– Must the referee be physically fit.
– Umpire equipment. This may include uniforms, stop-watches, whistles, flags or cards, and shoes.

Links:

http://www.umpireschoolhq.com/how-to-become-a-college-baseball-umpire
http://www.cbuao.com/

Professional Baseball Umpire

Minor League Baseball:

1. A Rookie
2. A – League
3. Double-A
4. Triple-A leagues”

Authorization/Recommendation:

– The first step to pursuing a career as a professional umpire is to attend a professional umpire training school. Currently there are three schools whose curriculum has been approved by the PBUC (Professional Baseball Umpire Corporation, the organization which hires, promotes and supervises working umpires throughout the minor leagues) for training of those desiring to become a professional umpire.
– At the end of the training, the schools recommend their top graduates to the PBUC staff. PBUC then extends a formal invitation to participate and compete at the Umpire Evaluation Course to those graduates who meet the requirements and criteria.
– Graduation from one of these schools does not guarantee an invitation to the PBUC Evaluation Course or a job in Minor League Baseball.
– At the Evaluation course, instructors monitor the students and make recommendations to the Rookie and short-season Class-A league presidents about possible candidates for hire.
– PBUC evaluates the umpires to promote them from one minor league level to the next until they reach Class-AAA.

Major requirements:

– In order to be considered for a professional umpiring position, the umpire must first attend a professional umpire training school.
– High School diploma or G.E.D.
– Pass written and technical test.
– Acceptable attendance rate.

Minor requirements:

– Reasonable body weight
– 20/20 vision (with or without glasses or contact lenses)
– Good communication skills
– Quick reflexes and good coordination
– Some athletic ability
– Required preliminary training for the job (i.e., professional umpire school)
– A driving record that makes him or her insurable and able to drive employer-provided transportation

Duration of courses:

– The Umpire School operates for approximately four weeks from the first part of January through the first part of February each year.
– The Harry Wendelstedt School for Umpires school operates for approximately five weeks from the first part of January through the first part of February each year.

Pass marks:

Each year in March, the PBUC holds its annual Evaluation Course, where prospective rookie umpires are invited for evaluation of their umpiring abilities. The students who rank the highest at the Evaluation Course are recommended for the first openings in the Rookie and Short-A leagues each year, thereby beginning their careers in professional baseball.

Links:

http://www.milb.com/milb/info/umpires.jsp?mc=_ump_career
https://www.therightcall.net/requirements.aspx

Professional Baseball Umpire

Level:

Major League Baseball

Authorization/Recommendation:

– While progressing from Class A to Class Double-A to Class Triple-A leagues, the umpire receives valuable training and experience which may provide an opportunity to become a Major League umpire.
– Certification at the major league level isn’t offered.

Major requirements:

Seven to eight years of umpiring professional baseball at the Minor League level before the umpire is considered for a position at the Major League level.

Minor requirements:

– Reasonable body weight
– 20/20 vision (with or without glasses or contact lenses)
– Good communication skills
– Quick reflexes and good coordination
– Some athletic ability
– Required preliminary training for the job (i.e., professional umpire school)
– A driving record that makes him or her insurable and able to drive employer-provided transportation

Links:

http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/official_info/umpires/how_to_become.jsp
http://degreedirectory.org/articles/How_Can_I_Become_a_Certified_Baseball_Umpire.html

Legion Baseball Umpire

Level:

Played by teenage boys

Links:

http://www.nelegionbaseball.net/umpires/umpires.htm
http://www.legion.org/baseball/participate

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