Base Umpiring Essentials

Where do I stand at the start of each play?

The short answer: In one of four positions, depending on how many umpires are working the game and where the runners are.  If you forget where you should stand to start a play, stand in the Slot that is directly in front of the lead runner. 

 

Diagram 1 – Base Umpire Slot Positioning

As a Base Umpire, there are four potential positions ("Slots") where you'll position yourself to start each play. 

Slot A: 10 – 12 feet behind 1st base in foul territory

Slot B: 2 – 3 steps behind and 2 – 3 steps to the left of the 2nd baseman (in normal position)

Slot C: 2 – 3 steps behind and 2 – 3 steps to the left of the shortstop (in normal position)

Slot D: 10 – 12 feet behind 3rd base in foul territory

 

For a two person umpire crew - one Plate Umpire (PU) and one Base Umpire (BU1)

-  If no runners on base – BU1 will start in Slot A.

 

-  If one or more runners on any of the bases - BU1 will start in the Slot just ahead of the lead runner, except when a runner is on 3rd base (3B). In that case, BU1 will start in Slot C.

  • Example: if runner on 2nd base (2B), BU1 starts in Slot C (just ahead of the runner). If a runner on 3B, BU1 also starts in Slot C.
  • In a two-man crew, BU1 never starts in Slot D.
  • Diagram 2 - Two Person Crew Examples
Little League Base Umpire field slot positions Above diagrams show starting Slot position of BU1 for different runner scenarios. BU1 starts one base ahead of the lead runner except when a runner on 3B.

 

For a three person umpire crew - one Plate Umpire (PU) and two Base Umpires (BU1 & BU2)

-  BU1 starts in Slot B when there is a runner on 2nd base (2B) or when runners on 1st base (1B) and 3rd base (3B). Otherwise, BU1 starts in Slot A.

 

-  BU2 starts in Slot D except when a runner on 1B. Then he starts in Slot C.

 

-  Diagram 3 - Three Person Crew Examples

Little League Base Umpire field slot positions Above diagrams show starting Slot position of BU1 and BU2 for different runner scenarios. For example, when runners on 1B and 3B, BU1 starts in Slot B and BU2 starts in Slot D.

 

Tip: If you forget where you should stand to start a play, stand in the Slot that is directly in front of the lead runner.

 

Site Glossary
Definitions from the Little League Rule Book and terms used on this site.
LL101 Site Glossary Version 5.pdf
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