How to Become an Umpire

by Shenron on March 3, 2010

You’ve been watching the games on TV for years and now you want to finally make the final step towards becoming a professional baseball umpire. There are very few jobs on the planet that have the same obscurity level as being a professional baseball umpire, and because of that, no one ever really knows where to begin their training and the application process for the whole thing. Luckily, we’re here to help and we’re going to walk you through everything you’ll need to know about how to become an MLB umpire.

Become Umpire How to Become an Umpire

1. There are two training facilities in the United States for becoming an umpire. Both of them are located in Florida. The training programs are open to the public and they each last five weeks. It doesn’t matter which course you enroll in as they are identical in the material they teach. Obviously, most people aren’t residents of Florida, so the few hundred miles that the programs are apart shouldn’t make much difference if you have to travel to get to them. These five week programs are held during the baseball off season. More information can be found on the official MLB website.

2. Obviously, enrolling and participating in the course are the easy part of the whole process. While in your training program, you’ll be continuously watched by scouts and other officials to see how you’re doing. If you display a strong sense of character and morality, as well as very astute observational skills, you’ll be considered for moving onto the next stage. Remember to keep yourself composed during the training program and do as well as you can. Because there are only a few hundred umpires in the entire country at any given time, getting noticed and moving on is easier said than done.

base ball Umpire How to Become an Umpire

3. Assuming you get noticed for being one of the best of your class you will be moved on to being an umpire in the minor leagues. There are many divisions in minor league baseball, all of which are outlined on the MLB website. Assuming you make it into being an umpire for the minor league (there are only 225), you’ve made it much farther than most and you should give yourself a pat on the back.

4. The final part of the process that most people want to attain is of course to make it into the major leagues to start being an umpire for the pros. Here is where it gets tricky. Because being an umpire isn’t exactly a dangerous job and they don’t get fired too often by the MLB officials, the turnover rate for professional umpires is between very low and non-existent. To make it into the pro game, it’s almost all lucky. If a position needs to be filled in a major league baseball game and you’ve met the right people along the way, you’ll get a phone call requesting you to be an official. There is no formal process to go through to go from the minor league to the professional level. It’s pure chance.

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