Writing an Ejection Report

by Steve Orinick
Rule 9.05

 

Report pad

a.The umpire shall report to the Office of the Commissioner within 12 hours after the end of a game all violations of rules and other incidents worthy of comment, including the disqualification of any trainer, manager, coach or player, and the reasons therefore.

b.When any trainer, manager, coach or player is disqualified for a flagrant offense such as the use of obscene or indecent language, or an assault upon an umpire, trainer, manager, coach or player, the umpire shall forward full particulars to the Office of the Commissioner within four hours after the end of the game.

c.After receiving the umpire's report that a trainer, manager, coach or player has been disqualified, the Office of the Commissioner shall impose such penalty as it deems justified, and shall notify the person penalized and the manager of the club of which the penalized person is a member. If the penalty includes a fine, the penalized person shall pay the amount of the fine to the Office of the Commissioner within five days after receiving notice of the fine. Failure to pay such fine within five days shall result in the offender being debarred from participation in any game and from sitting on the players' bench during any game, until the fine is paid.

Though most umpires will not be required to file and ejection report with the Office of the Commissioner, essentially all will eject a player or coach at some point in their career and be required to file an ejection report. I have read some absolutely horrible ejection reports over the years, whether it be simple laziness or a lack of knowledge as to how to properly write an ejection report, and determined it would be a good topic to cover on this site. How to and how not to proceed with this task will be covered below.

Time frames will vary, but most leagues or governing organizations will require that a report be filed within 24 to 48 hours. However, your assignor should be notified as soon as you get off the field or as soon as practically possible to give him a heads-up. I have done this in the past as soon as the game ended and discovered that the coach had already called the assignor. This is very important. It allows your assignor to deal with the situation from an informed perspective. Assignors hate surprises.

Regardless of the method of filing, be it email, electronic or hard copy, there are general guidelines to be followed.

The Basics:

In general, ejection reports are legal documents. In Pro ball, they may be a very important part of any subsequent fine and/or suspension, and often large amounts of money and lawyers are involved. As such, with any ejection report at any level of play:

The Incident:

After an ejection, take the time to jot down any relevant information, including quotes from the offender. This will give you a record of the incident that you can utilize when the report is being written. I usually use the lineup card, or if I am not the plate umpire, ask my partner to let me use the card or have him write the information down. At the conclusion of the game, keep the card. General information required:

Writing the Report:

When you describe the incident, be concise and specific. Do not embellish. You should not be emotionally involved or "getting even" with a coach or player, just doing a part of your job. Simply describe what occurred, no more or less. State your case simply. The objective is for the reader of the report to know what happened, devoid of any personal opinion. Keep in mind that you are the writer of the report and it is up to you to choose what is and is not included. If the situation escalated or further relevant behavior took place, include that as well.

It's very important to address specific audible levels as well as distance when talking about discussions with a coach. The coach yelled "F You" (use the actual words) and it was audible to the crowd. The Coach yelled "F You" and it was audible to both benches. The coach said "F you" in a conversational tone while we were discussing the play. We were standing 20 feet apart, we were standing five feet apart. Whatever it may be, it may affect the severity of the situation in the eyes of the league commissioner, state officials or the AD. Going along with this point, be very specific, quote the coaches and then quote the rule book in your reports. Example - I restricted Coach XXX to the bench in the fourth inning for arguing balls and strikes. During the fifth inning, he continued to argue balls and strikes from his bench position. By rule, I ejected him from the game


Take your time with the report, check your spelling and have it proof read by another individual, if necessary. If you are unsure how to properly write a report, consult with another umpire that you trust or speak to your assignor. The objective is to improve the writing and the overall "picture" painted in your narrative, not to doctor the facts. I generally will write the report, put it down and off my mind and then re-read it at a later time.

Examples:

In the examples below, the first is the poor example of sentence content, the second is the better of the two:

a/ Jones swore at me.
b/ After being called out on strikes, Jones turned to me a screamed "You're a fucking asshole."

a/ I was having a bad day and called Jones out on a low pitch. He turned to me and said "XXX, that wasn't a strike". I was forced to give him the boot due to my poor strike zone.
b/ Following a called 3rd strike, Jones turned to me and stated "XXX, that wasn't a strike". He was then ejected for arguing balls and strikes.

a/ Jones had an very bad attitude the entire game and so did coach Smith.  They were nasty to me the whole game. After Jones said to me "XXX" after a close play, I tossed him.
b/ After a close play at 3rd in which Jones was called out, he got up, ran over to me and loudly yelled "XXX". This was clearly heard by spectators and both benches. He was immediately ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Click below for actual NCAA Ejection Report examples in Word format
Player, umpire & teams names have been removed

Report 1 / Report 2 / Report 3 / Report 4

Example of how not to write an Ejection Report
This is an actual submitted report

Report 5

Word Viewer 

In Conclusion:

Though it is not the most endearing part of our game, umpires are empowered to and in fact, expected to eject players, coaches and managers. When necessary, it is an essential part of your authority. Do not attempt to be "Mr. Nice Guy" by putting up with obvious flagrant actions that warrant ejection. You do yourself or your reputation no good and often put the officials that follow you in a poor position.

Do not take the standpoint "I didn't want to eject him, I don't want to do all that paperwork." I have heard this all too often. It is part of the job.  Again, you are not doing yourself, the game or your fellow umpires any good. Obvious ejectable offenses must be dealt with.

Keep in mind that these are general guidelines, and various assignors may handle reports in a slightly different fashion. I once worked for an assignor where we knew each other very well. Because he knew I would provide accurate and honest answers, he would on occasion ask my opinion (off the record) on possible additional penalties or lack thereof. Any formal organization, such as scholastic governing bodies, would never handle such a situation in this manner.

Write a simple, to-the-point report that contains only the relevant facts and submit it in a timely fashion.

Steve O's Baseball Umpire Resources 

Ump Evaluation Forms - Ejection Reports / Steve's Umpire Tips

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