Use this page as a quick start guide to umpiring a game as either a home plate or base umpire. The diagrams below show positioning and put you in position to see the calls and succeed. The videos at the right help you visual how to perform basic ump hand signals.
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Usage of the "Slot" position puts the umpire in the best place to see the whole strike zone and minimizes getting hit by foul balls. Make sure to reverse the slot position for a left-handed batter.
The following images show the basic A (1st base), B (2nd base) and C (shortshop) positions for a base umpire. These are the only positions that need to be learned and apply for these runner situations:
The base umpire is generally responsible for safe/out calls at all bases, making sure runners touch the bases, making any out calls on balls caught in the outfield and calling fair/foul balls on the 1st base line when in the A position.
C position - The base umpire (U2) is in this position any time there is a runner on 2nd or 3rd base. This is like a deep short stop position close to the edge of the grass.
The following videos cover the how to perform the "Basic 6" signals for an ump (strike, ball, out, safe, time, fair/foul)
Rise up and shout "strike" and using the right hand/arm "hammer" signal at the same time.
There is no hand/arm signal when calling a ball and you don't rise from your position until after you verbalize your call. You should not locate your calls, meaning do not say "outside" or "inside", etc
Very similar to strike call, rise up while shouting "he's out" with the hammer/strike signal. Always use the right arm.
Make sure to rise up, bring arms up and out and then back together while shouting "safe"
You can call "Time" based on many reasons. Common ones are: manager request, a batter hit by a pitch, a rule violation, an injury, or to confer with fellow umpires to review a play.
Calling foul ball also indicates to the players that the play is now "dead". In a dead ball situation, all play stops and runners must return to the base they were on prior to the call.