About CBUA South Bay Unit


The CALIFORNIA BASEBALL UMPIRES’ ASSOCIATION (CBUA)- South Bay Unit, installed itself in 1976. The South Bay Unit serves from 35-40 high schools annually, including cities of Compton, Culver City, Gardena, Harbor City, Hawthorne, Hermosa Beach, Inglewood, Lawndale, Lomita, Los Angeles (selected areas), Manhattan Beach, Palms, Palos Verdes, Redondo Beach, Rolling Hills, Santa Monica, Torrance and Westchester.
Two of the founding members we know of were Dave Dietz and John Barr. There was an official umpire’s association prior to 1976 that worked games in the south bay, however, they were not organized as today’s associations are. In 1976, John Barr was a teacher, coach and eventual athletic director in the Palos Verdes School District. If you could believe it, he assigned umpires the “old fashion way—he phoned them and asked for their availability each day/night.”



Our current umpires’ association, CBUA-South Bay Unit, has one member, Jerry Flory, who joined this unit in 1978. Jerry is our senior member. Jerry has been a member of this unit for 40 years and has served every position the board has except secretary-treasurer. Michael Collins followed Jerry and joined in 1980. Michael became secretary -treasurer in 1990 after Dean Druelius (former secretary-treasurer) retired from umpiring to focus on his law career.


The earliest game fee we have remembrance of is $12 per game (1980), whether plate or base. JV and lower divisions earned $10 per game. Games were often paid in cash. Games were assigned (the old fashion way) as quickly as they can be given out. In 1982, the South Bay Unit had a mere 44 members, half of which were over 40 years-old. As school’s and districts grew, the need for more umpires was becoming evident. A recruitment effort to get more umpires was under way and in the mid-1980s umpires such as Sidney Williamson, Steve Morgan and Hilarion Domingue joined as young, yet tested, boys in blue.



By the mid-1980s, the South Bay Unit grew to as much as 110 members. We were flush with good and upcoming umpires. But they were limited on their efforts to see Varsity games. Moreover, turnover was still a concern and by the late 1980s, the unit’s membership fell below eighty. In addition, the unit was suffering tumult—with senior board members in-fighting and bickering within. Varsity assignments were reserved for the “good ol’ boy network.” This behavior caused members to quit or transfer to other units. More importantly, the general membership had enough and eventually voted out the President and his underlings from the Board. In 1988, Louis Smith was voted in as President and an immediate calm and transformation began to take place.




During Smith’s one-term as president, the unit began a soft-transformation internally. Assignments improved, ability to access lower-to-mid range varsity games occurred, and instruction improved. Leadership included past presidents: Paul Cohen, Porfie Martinez, Sidney Williamson, Linn Mikle, and Jeff Kitzerow. More importantly, playoff assignments were shared more equitably and some of the prior disgruntled board members who were voted out had all but moved on to other organizations such as softball or college baseball. Passion to work high school baseball games returned to those who stuck-it-out. Game fees were up to $44 by 1998.








When the 2000s arrived, sport officiating was becoming trendy. The South Bay Unit experienced an influx of multiple sport officials (baseball, softball, basketball, football, soccer, water polo, etc.). The trend was in part due to a weakened economy and an allure to being a sport official. Television replay was becoming popular and game officiating was now seen as a positive way to “stay involved” when one’s playing days were over. Additionally, our unit was drawing a range of skilled umpires who either needed “an income” or were serious in advancing their officiating skills. One such umpire was Heath Jones, who after a mere two years in the unit, transitioned to professional baseball where he achieved Triple AAA level. Others, such as Jerry Flory and Sidney Williamson worked duel-units, both high school and college baseball.






By the early 2000s, the South Bay Unit had stabilized internally and a new Constitution was structured, including By-laws. Phil Jenks was elected as president in 2000 and he remains in that seat today. Over Phil’s tenure, there have been numerous improvements the unit has undertaken. For example, policies were developed to ensure at least one-new umpire (when possible) is eligible for Final CIF game assignments every year. Also, after working a CIF Final contest, said umpire may NOT work another Final CIF contest for a minimum of three years, thus allowing other unit members opportunities to advance their craft.



The South Bay Unit is one of 13 umpiring units the CIF-Southern Section recognizes. Known for their professionalism and exceptional umpires, the South Bay Unit has routinely received CIF Final Playoff appearances for their unit members every year of their existence. Between 1993 and 2008 the South Bay Unit had a steak of 17 consecutive plate assignments on a CIF Finial game with two plate assignments in 2006. Seven of these assignments were on the Division 1 game. The South Bay Unit guarantees 18 instructional classroom hours over three months and one field clinic. Passing a certification exam is a CIF requirement. The South Bay Unit, while providing these resources to certify as a high school umpire, does not guarantee game assignments. However, no certified unit member has never been denied contests to officiate if certified. Please review our Unit’s Constitution and By-laws for more information.