They do it for the kids.
And they're doing it very well
Rising Sun Little League umpires Dave Yale and Joe Smith have been selected for plum assignments.
Yale will work the Little League Softball World Series in Portland, Oregon while Smith will call the Junior Baseball Eastern Regional in Freehold, New Jersey.
"It's definitely exciting," said Yale, who has been a Rising Sun Little League umpire for 14 seasons. "I'm nervous but I want to do it for the kids."
Yale has worked three Eastern Region tournament in recent years. He umpired the Senior Softball tournament last year and was selected to call balls and strikes for the championship game.
He previously worked the Junior Softball and Big League Softball region tourneys.
Umpires are recommended for future assignments if they receive an outstanding assessment. Before that, local umpires must be recommended by Smith, the District 5 Umpire-in-Chief, and district adminstrator Martin Thompson.
"If they don't sign off on your application it doesn't go anywhere," Yale said.
Yale put in for the Junior Softball World Series and was "pleasantly surprised" to be chosen for the Little League (ages 11-12) tournament.
The only Maryland umpire selected to call a Little League World Series this season, Yale must pay his own way out to Oregon for the tournament which runs from August 8-14.
He will be the fourth Rising Sun Little League umpire to work a World Series, joining his brother, Vince, Smith, and Bob Sullivan.
"I'm trying to do a good job for a lot of people as Joe and Vince have in recent years," Dave Yale said.
It's an extremely busy time for Smith, who is also president of Rising Sun Little League and an assistant district administrator.
He left last Wednesday to serve as umpire coordinator of the Big League Softball tournament in Waldorf. The Junior Baseball Eastern Regional begins August 2.
In addition to last year's World Series, Smith has also previously worked Senior Baseball and Major Baseball region tournaments.
"It's a real good thing to go," Smith said. "I'm very honored. I'm really happy for District 5, especially Rising Sun."
Several factors have helped make Rising Sun a haven of outstanding umpires, said Smith. The league has been lucky to retain good umpires even after their children are no longer playing. RSLL's umpires frequently attend clinics and the crew usually makes after games to review their rulings.
"If you don't know what's wrong you don't know how to fix it," said Smith.
Smith says Rising Sun Little League umpires have worked 11 region tournaments and four World Series events.
"It's got to speak volumes about our program here," he said.
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