With all the recent discussion on the fine art of umpiring, the observer decided to drop in over at Umpire.org to see what these guys talk about in their spare time. The most fascinating thread was “What is the one complaint you hate hearing?”

No surprise they have feelings. Some have major chips on their shoulders. Still, their responses were enlightening:

  • “Call it both ways, ump.”  (The one that galls them the most.)
  • “Come on blue, be consistent.” (A close second.)
  • “You’re better than that, blue.”
  • “If somebody says, ‘Good Pitch … grumble, grumble, unintelligible grumble,’  you know where they are directing the comment.”
  • “Where’s your strike zone?” (Usually asked by lead off batters.)
  • “Tie goes to the runner, blue.”
  • “You couldn’t have seen that from where you were.”
  • “You’re over-umpiring, not letting the players decide the game.”
  • “The one makes me want to slap somebody is, ‘One base on an overthrow, blue.'”
  • “Blue must be ready to go home.” (Apparently an almost automatic ejection if coming from a coach.)

Not suggesting any of these taunts be used during the upcoming regional. No way.

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By Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

3 thoughts on “What Umpires Hate To Hear”
  1. There are some more colorful ones I’ve heard in my time at events, such as

    “Get off your knees ump, your b%*wing the game.”

    “Great who let the kid from footlocker out on the court” (basketball)

    “If you had one more eye, you’d be a cyclops”

    “Hey Ump, I thought only horses slept standing up” (or other references to getting the ump to the stalls at Churchill Downs.)

    “Hey ump, your seeing eye dog is eating my Nachos!”

  2. “Who’s winning, ump/ref? (Pause) Not this game, the one YOU’RE watching!!” And one of my favorites from back in the day, “You’re supposed to be a zebra, not a jacka$$ in stripes!”

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