Official Rules(view all)

8.03 Umpire Position

8.03 Umpire Position

(a)  The umpire-in-chief shall stand behind the catcher. (He usually is called the plate umpire.) His duties shall be to:

(1)  Take full charge of, and be responsible for, the proper conduct of the game;

(2)  Call and count balls and strikes;

(3)  Call and declare fair balls and fouls except those commonly called by field umpires;

(4)  Make all decisions on the batter;

(5)  Make all decisions except those commonly reserved for the field umpires;

(6)  Decide when a game shall be forfeited;

(7)  If a time limit has been set, announce the fact and the time set before the game starts;

(8)  Inform the official scorer of the official batting order, and any changes in the lineups and batting order, on request;

(9)  Announce any special ground rules, at his discretion.

(b)  A field umpire may take any position on the playing field he thinks best suited to make impending decisions on the bases. His duties shall be to:

(1)  Make all decisions on the bases except those specifically reserved to the umpire-in-chief;

(2)  Take concurrent jurisdiction with the umpire-in-chief in calling “Time,” balks, illegal pitches, or defacement or discoloration of the ball by any player.

(3)  Aid the umpire-in-chief in every manner in enforcing the rules, and excepting the power to forfeit the game, shall have equal authority with the umpire-in-chief in administering and enforcing the rules and maintaining discipline.

(c)  If different decisions should be made on one play by different umpires, the umpire-in-chief shall call all the umpires into consultation, with no manager or player present. After consultation, the umpire-in-chief (unless another umpire may have been designated by the League President) shall determine which decision shall prevail, based on which umpire was in best position and which decision was most likely correct. Play shall proceed as if only the final decision had been made.