Local News

Three Strikes Policy Targets Umpire Abuse

(La Porte, IN) - Fans and coaches yelling at umpires could be banned from youth league baseball and softball games in La Porte under a three-strikes-and-you're-out policy adopted last week by the park department.


Fans guilty of verbally or physically abusing umpires will be banned for three games on the first offense, five games on the second offense, and a lifetime ban on the third offense. Coaches found guilty will be banned for one game on the first offense, three games on the second offense, and forever on the third.


Park Department Superintendent Mark Schreiber said each complaint would be thoroughly investigated before any punishment is handed down.


Schreiber said there’s now an umpire shortage here and elsewhere from umpires quitting and others not becoming umpires because of how some fans and coaches treat umpires.


The policy is designed to encourage more people to become umpires.


“When we’re talking about youth baseball and trying to teach character and really make the atmosphere positive and fun there just isn’t any place for it,” Schreiber said.

Coaches and fans will be informed about the policy before starting the youth league season.


Schreiber says fans who need to yell at umpires should attend a professional baseball game where such conduct might be more tolerated. 

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