ABUA Umpire Camp/Clinic Testimonials

Student comments from the Bruce Doane Clinics

February 6-8, 2009

Dick & Rich,

Just wanted to take a moment to say a big THANKS for a great weekend. Great team of instructors and an incredible amount of material covered in such a short time. I’m really glad I took the opportunity to attend and feel it will really help me get off to a “good start” this season.

I took the liberty of posting a “review” of the camp on a number of the internet umpire boards I participate in, which you can read here.

Please pass along my heartfelt thanks to the rest of your instructor team as well.

J Muller, FVB

February 3-5
Bruce Doane Sr. Umpire Camp in Grand Rapids, MI

I just want you to know that I gained years of valuable experience in just a few days as a result of this camp. An umpire often is judged based on plate mechanics and your instructors were able to correct most of my old bad habits and even provided some excellent career lengthening ideas to make my plate game much better. I still need to work on some things but I have the tools to help myself with some drills that I can use when I’m not on the field. I believe that this camp has helped me more than any other clinic or meeting I’ve attended. Thank you! I should have come to this camp 10 years ago.

Regan Ford, Kendallville, IN

I wanted to thank you for the information I received at the camp this weekend. The camp was very well organized and very informative. Also, the trainers were excellent and were very receptive to all questions. A special thanks to Scott Barry and Perry Costello, who took the extra time to point out things that I was doing right and wrong. I will definitely recommend guys from our association to attend with me next year. Keep up the good work!

Curt Gambrell, Maple Grove, MN

Just a note to thank you and your staff for another great umpire camp in Grand Rapids, MI. It’s amazing how much we pack into a couple of days but the quality of instruction and dedication of your staff make it all worthwhile. I spent a few minutes at our association meeting yesterday and told my fellow umpires to mark their calendars for next February if they were serious about improving and advancing their officiating careers. I thin there are 4-5 candidates who will respond.

Dave Taberski, Maple City, MI

You guys did a great job hosting and training. It was my first umpire camp and my first exposure to umpiring. You have an excellent and well-organized camp. The materials you covered are very thorough. The process is excellent with a mixture of classroom and hands-on sessions. Your teachers are great. Thanks again for a great experience. I already am planning on next year and will talk it up and recommend it to other umpires.

Gene Mahon, Metamora, MI

I wanted to let you folks know just how much my 4 umpire buddies and I enjoyed this clinic. We flew in from Minnesota for this and I was going to pass on coming to the clinic, but at the last minute, I decided to attend.

What a Great Decision! This clinic was well run, extremely informative and very helpful. I’ve been umpiring for a number of years and I thought I had it all down pretty well. This clinic made me realize that I wasn’t as good as I thought I was, but I now feel that I can be much better this year.

By the time I left this clinic on Sunday, I was ready to apply to our group to officiate college ball. I did not have that confidence on Friday when I arrived.

My hats off to you guys, Runch and the Bunch! We will send more of our umpires there next year to help them improve as well. Thanks again!!!

Robert G. Pieper

Are you kiddin’ me, in the cage, you have former AAA umpire, and current College world series umpire, Dave Buck, current AA crew chief, Dave Uyl, D-1 and Frontier league umpire Sal Giacomantonio, batting clean-up, 5-time College world series, cage guru, Dick Runchey. On bases, current AAA umpire, and cat-quick, Scott Barry, Pro and D-1 umpire, Erik Stahlbush along with D-1 umpires Dan Rypma and Mike Luptowski.

In the classroom, I can’t imagine much better, than Kyle Mcneely and Mark Uyl. When not in the cage or class, you will learn mechanics, and also discuss the finer points of umpiring with a slew of other qualified umpires like, Scott Inman, Ken Foxx, Joe Yonto, Mike Bess and many more. Treat yourself, to a weekend with these guys,and become a member, of the greatest fraternity in the world!

Ed Roberts

Student comments from the 2004 Cape Cod Umpire Clinic

I just got home from attending your Umpire’s Camp. I have to say that this was one of the best experiences that I could have had as an umpire. Although next season will be my third and I have already done some over thirty league stuff and some high school stuff, I have yet to have an actual mechanics class. I loved every second of this camp and I hope I can apply all of it next season when I go back at it. I learned a lot at the camp especially because of the instructors that you brought in. These guys really knew what they were doing and were able to help me in every area of the game. Thank you a ton.

Ryan Hennessy

I just wanted to thank you once again for urging me to attend the Cape Cod ABUA umpiring clinic. It was hours of solid umpiring “tips” and covered just about every aspect of our avocation. I didn’t expect the personal, one-on-one time I received from the instructors and I noticed right away that they took a lot of pride in their presentations. You could feel their sincerity in making us better umps. They definitely brought their “A” game to the clinic and that became infectious immediately. In five years of umpiring, I was never told about the philosophies of umpiring or how important the intangibles are. Things like proper dress, pre-game conferences, being prompt and prepared, both mentally and physically, were all addressed. They looked the part, talked the part, and acted the part. You could tell they enjoyed umpiring and the colleagues and friends made during their careers. I would recommend this clinic to those umpires who want to improve their abilities and gain more confidence in themselves and want to learn more about what umpiring is really about.

Raff Yagjian

I learned a lot in a very short amount of time, thanks to the two Tony’s and Scott. Next season I will proudly put to use what I have learned. Please relay my sincere thanks to those 3 gentlemen for their outstanding work.

Steve Pinto

The teaching staff could not have been more accommodating, informative and enthusiastic. A great blend of teaching styles. The themes carried throughout the weekend of common sense and fair play really do make this great game of ours a little easier to understand. I think what I personally took away from the clinic was a renewed confidence, an understanding of personal “chi” (relax and enjoy) and pride. I will be training a lot with socks, balls, mirrors and having my son throw balls at my mask to see if I can go without blinking.

Jay Gledhill

Thank you once again for supporting and coordinating the umpire clinic. I received a bunch of very good feedback from you and your clinicians. Indeed, this was a very worthwhile clinic. What I liked about this years clinic was what seemed like more individual attention from the instructors. They all had something to add and plenty of comments. I also liked the classroom discussion on situations that Jim McNally put together. I really like the cage work. Some of the points I picked up on were tracking the ball to the catchers glove when calling the plate, then make call; Watch plays thru the plate and then make eye contact and identify the ball before making a call at the plate; Use crossover steps instead of running backwards; Stand up before making strike/out call; And that ball and safe are four letter words! It seems so obvious now! Again, thank you for your time. I would like to do it again next fall!

Stephen Salsbury, Ellsworth, Maine

It was an absolutely amazing clinic this past weekend. Well organized, well instructed and much enjoyed. You’re entire setup was a class act and I am very satisfied with what I walked away with. Truthfully, I was left wanting more. Tony, Scott, Jim, and Tony are a great team and made it smooth and easy to absorb all the material presented. The work on the field was great and it was so easy to listen and learn from each instructor. Not only are all these guys talented but the organization on your part raised the bar here and helped turn the clinic into the most valuable umpiring experience I’ve had to date. Thank you again.

Andy Stapleton