Nassau County Softball Officials Association, Inc.
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2014 Regionals


2014 Dinner


2014 Exceptional Senior Game

Thank you to all that worked the exceptional senior game

Bill Pettas
Bill Tollner
Frank Dubrowski
Ernie Rauch
John Mayorga
Bart Sonnenberg
Bill Drabyk
Pete Cavallo
Bob O'Brien
Rich Schaefer
Charles Beglan
PJ Moriarity
Dimas Gutierrez
Tim Bloom
Tony LoPilato



Congratulations to our officials who were selected to have the honor to officiate this year's finals, regionals and state championships!

Class AA

Larry Forman
Tom Cully
Steve Hopkins
Bill Schulman

Class A

Tony Okolsky
Jim Borek
Jack Kisilinsky
Tom Merle

Class B

Hector Baker
Rick Norris
Steve Zalinsky
Frank Sheehan


Class AA

Jim Borek

Stephen Hopkins

Tom Cully

Class A

Jack Kisilinsky

Steve Zalinsky

Larry Forman

Class B

Frank Sheehan

Hector Baker

John DeFalco 

State Championships

Jack Kisilinsky
Steve Moffett





WRONG: The calling distance on force plays is 12 feet.

RIGHT: The calling distance on force plays is 15 – 18 feet. Any shorter distance does not allow an umpire a full view of the play. 12 feet is too short a distance to be able to keep the ball in your peripheral, watch the runner, see the fielder’s foot on the base and see the runner’s foot hit the base.


WRONG: The plate umpire warns both teams about jewelry in the coaches’ pre-game conference and then ejects any player in violation of the rule once the game starts.

RIGHT: The plate umpire should confirm that all of the coaches’ players are legally and properly equipped in the coaches’ pre-game conference. In order for there to be a warning, there must first be a violation. NYSSO does not endorse pre-violation warnings. NYSSO fully supports the NYSPHSAA "No Jewelry Rule." Players shall not wear jewelry while playing. Nevertheless, we should show respect to the vast majority of high school softball players who sincerely try to comply with the rules and that very rarely display unsporting conduct of any kind. In NYSSO a player cannot play in a game while wearing jewelry. However, no player should be ejected, disqualified or restricted for wearing jewelry. Simply ask the player to remove any visible jewelry. If she refuses to do so she cannot participate in the game until she complies with the rule. NYSSO has been informed by legal counsel that umpires shall not search players looking for jewelry or order her to remove tape on her ears for inspection regardless what other associations mandate. Please consult your NYSSO Umpire Manual for further guidelines on how to handle issues with jewelry.


WRONG: There is no penalty for wearing metal cleats.

RIGHT: The plate umpire should confirm that all of the coaches’ players are legally and properly equipped in the coaches’ pre-game conference. If a player is discovered wearing metal cleats during the game, the player must conform to the rule before she can continue playing. If she cannot conform to the rule, she cannot play. The team may use an eligible substitute. If there is no eligible substitute, the team may play shorthanded. If the same player is later discovered to be wearing metal cleats again, that player is subject to ejection at that time.


PLAY: With R1 on 1st base, B2 lays down a bunt that is fielded by F1, who throws to 1st base to retire B2. R1 has rounded 2nd base so F3 throws behind her to F6, who is covering 2nd base.

WRONG: The plate umpire is responsible for making a call on R1 at 2nd base.

RIGHT: The base umpire is responsible for making all calls (with extremely limited exceptions) at 2nd base including in this play. The base umpire will turn and move toward 2nd base after making the call at 1st base. If properly employed in the right circumstances, the base umpire may use a “reverse drift technique” on these plays. The plate umpire is responsible for glancing over to 2nd base as R1 approaches to observe any possible obstruction committed against R1. The plate umpire is responsible for the play on R1 at 3rd base should R1 continue all the way to 3rd base.


WRONG: The batter may choose to use either on-deck circle or move closer to the batter’s box to practice her timing.

RIGHT: The batter is required to warm-up in her own on-deck circle. Whether the batter is left-handed or right-handed, she must use the on-deck circle nearest her own dugout. Allowing a batter to warm up near the batter’s box could have dire consequences.


WRONG: The defense is permitted only 3 defensive conferences, so the pitcher must be removed from the pitcher’s position at the conclusion of the 3rd defensive conference.

RIGHT: During a regulation game, the defense is entitled to 3 defensive conferences. On the 4th defensive conference, the pitcher must be removed from the pitcher’s position and is not eligible to return to the pitcher’s position in the same game. If a game enters extra innings, the defense is entitled to 1 defensive conference. On the 2nd defensive conference, the pitcher must be removed from the pitcher’s position and is not eligible to return to the pitcher’s position.


WRONG: 3-foot lane interference may be called on a throw coming home to retire a runner trying to score.

WRONG: 3-foot lane interference may be called on a poor defensive throw where the defender covering 1st base would not reasonably be able to catch the throw.

RIGHT: The batter-runner is out for 3-foot lane interference if while she is running the last half of the distance to 1st base she runs outside (to the right of) the 3-foot line or inside (to the left of) the foul line and in the umpire’s judgment she interferes with the fielder taking the throw at first base. 3-foot lane interference does not occur if a poor quality throw that has no reasonable chance to retire the batter-runner, strikes the batter-runner while she is within or outside the three-foot-lane. To have interference there must be an act of interference. If there is a poor quality throw with no reasonable chance to retire the batter-runner, three-foot land interference should not be called. An umpire using common sense, good judgment and thoughtful reasoning will not call any runner out it there is not a legitimate chance to retire such runner.


WRONG: A team automatically and immediately forfeits the game when there are no uniformed coaches remaining.

RIGHT: If someone claims to be a certified coach desiring to take over a team because of ejections or any other reasons, the plate umpire will have the coach sign his or her lineup card to that effect. It is not reasonable to expect someone to show documentation at the game site, so we accept that they are a certified coach based on their signing the lineup card.


WRONG: As long as both umpires agree, they can work whatever mechanics they want.

RIGHT: Umpires must adhere to the mechanics within the NYSSO manual. Though NYSSO does not endorse clone or spot umpires, NYSSO does provide specific mechanics in virtually all situations. In situations that are not covered, umpires must use common sense, sound judgment and thoughtful reasoning. Uniformity in mechanics is important for many reasons, not the least of which is to make sure that all calls are covered, no calls are double-covered and no calls result in opposite double calls or no calls at all. It is detrimental to unnecessarily deviate from mechanics, such as the plate umpire stating that he or she has all fair/foul calls down the line and all fly balls unless the umpire goes out. Practicing inaccurate and substandard mechanics leads to confusion, missed calls and a break down in mechanics, particularly when an umpire works with someone he or she has not worked with previously. That occurs at the sectional level and as we move into regional and state competition.


WRONG: The pitcher may not have the ball concealed within her glove when she steps on the pitcher’s plate.

RIGHT: The pitcher may step on the pitcher’s plate with the ball in her throwing hand or in her glove. The pitcher does not have to present or show the ball before pitching.


WRONG: The plate umpire shall bellow “Mercy Rule – Line it up” when the game is officially over due to a run rule.

RIGHT: Eliminate the term "Mercy Rule" from your vernacular. Define a run rule as the "Run Rule." High school players feel disappointed enough after a one-sided loss without hearing the term “Mercy Rule." There is no need to bellow out, "Mercy Rule, Mercy Rule! The game's over!" If necessary, simply professionally announce without fanfare, “Ball game” or if there seems to e any doubt, follow up by saying "The game is over because of the mandated run rule.


WRONG: The plate umpire is always the game’s umpire-in-chief and what he or she says goes.

RIGHT: Umpires should not shrink their responsibilities when they are aware that another umpire has made or is about to make a blatantly incorrect ruling. Do not cop out as a base umpire under the guise, “Well, the plate umpire is the umpire-in-chief for the game and what the plate umpire made the running, especially when you are the more experienced umpire. Consider the following: You know that the plate umpire has erred in making a ruling but you don’t say anything and neither do the coaches. The game continues and the same play occurs with the same incorrect ruling. This time, however, the misapplication of the rule goes against the team who benefited from it earlier. Now, the coach comes out to protest the ruling and you admit that the previous ruling was incorrect. How do you think the conversation is going to go with the other coach? Similarly, think of the disservice you do to all other officials who may have that same play in a future game and is subject to the, “Well last week the umpire said…?”


Click here for the dos and don't of umpiring


There are always questions on how ratings are calculated.

Here is a summary on how your rating is calculated. Keep in mind your current rating is a combined rating for the past two seasons.

Ideally after every game, each coach fills out a rating card and sends it in to BOCES. BOCES takes those ratings and adds them up and divides by the number of ratings to get the coaches contribution to your rating. This rating constitutes 60% of your overall rating. Under certain circumstances, rating cards are thrown out. A game with an ejection is an example of a reason why a card is thrown out.

BOCES gives you up to 10 office points. Points can be deducted for turn backs, being late, etc. These points make up 10% of your rating.

You can receive up to 30 points from our Association. These points make up the remaining 30% of your rating.

Here is how you earn your 30 points:

Being a member: 6 points

Test Score:

84-100 7 points

80-83 6 points

74-79 5 points

Attendance: 6 points (missing a mandatory meeting without a written excuse takes 5 points from this category)

Service: 5 points

Return of Sportsmanship Ballot on Time: 3 points

Paying dues on time: 3 points