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  1. Are all the interpretations in the Jaksa/Roder manual those officially used on the fields of professional baseball?

    The Jaksa/Roder manual includes all interpretations officially used on the fields of professional baseball. But it does not stop there. The Official Rules, as well as the Major League and PBUC (minor league) umpire manuals, leave many rule questions unanswered. Jaksa and Roder directly address these questions with answers that you can use on the field. You are specifically allowed by the Official Rules to arbitrarily rule on anything that the rulebook does not cover. So, by employing our manual, you will never be left in doubt on the field. Interpretations, directives, and penalizations suggested in the Jaksa/Roder manual that are not “official” are clearly marked by being written in red ink.

    A valuable partner to the Jaksa/Roder manual when dealing with problem rules is Rick Roder's newly released book, More Than 100 Problems With the Official Baseball Rules. As an umpire it is imperative that you not only know the every-day rules, but also that you know where the problems lie and what to do if they occur on the field.

  2. What is the best process for learning the rules of baseball on any level?

    Many educators who have taught professional baseball umpires, including Joe Brinkman, are of the opinion that the easiest way to learn the rules is to begin with the professional rules. The professional rules remain closest to the heart of baseball. College and high school rules often veer sharply away from basic baseball concepts. It is our experience in the professional umpire school classroom that an umpire who learns the professional rule first, and then attempts to learn the amateur rules, succeeds in mastery of the rules much quicker than an umpire who tries the process in reverse.

    Any umpire who wants to master baseball’s rules will want to gather all possible materials, especially the Jaksa/Roder manual along with rulebooks and casebooks specific to a certain level. There are other supplementary texts available, such as Baseball Rule Differences by Carl Childress.

    The application of the rules on the field is the next step. Watch rulesofbaseball.com for future offerings of advice!


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