CON-X 2023 CNA program offers advice for umpires

CON-X 2023 CNA program offers advice for umpires
The PalaCongressi di Rimini stage will welcome an international cast of umpires including Trevor Grieve and Gustavo Rodriguez from North America, Nacho Pardo and Raoul Machalet from Europe and Andrea Caser, Yuri Macchiavelli and Gian Paolo Pelosi from Italy

The CON-X lineup from January 27-29, 2023 will not disappoint as the speakers for the CNA program make their way on stage.  After an introduction by CNA Commissioner Gianluca Magnani, the CON-X 2023 audience in Rimini will be treated to a series of engaging presentations by some of the best international umpires in the world of baseball and softball. While Trevor Grieve, Gustavo Rodriguez, Andrea Caser and Yuri Macchiavelli will shed light on baseball topics, speak Luis Ignacio “Nacho” Pardo, Raoul Machalet and Gian Paolo Pelosi will lend their expertise on softball.

Canadian Trevor Grieve, who presented during the online CON6 2020 program, is back by popular demand to discuss the "collision rule" as well as the best positions to umpire at home plate and near the pitching mound. He won the Dick Willis Memorial Award for being the Best Canadian Umpire of the Year in 2011. Trevor Grieve umpired in the 2013 and 2017 editions of the World Baseball Classic. In addition, he officiated in the Premiere 12 in 2015 and in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament (Europe-Africa) in Bologna and Parma in 2019. In 2021, he was included in the umpire list for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

With more than 35 years of international baseball umpiring, Gustavo Rodriguez is one of the most recognizable and experienced voices in the umpiring world. The California native and current WBSC Baseball Umpire Director returns to Italy for CON-X 23 after presenting at CON3 in Riccione in 2019.  The host of the WBSC podcast "The Global Game" umpired the 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games. He will make presentations at CON-X 2023 on both Saturday, January 28 and Sunday, January 29. Topics include game management, critical situations, timed play and appealing games.

Baseball umpires will also be treated to two special presentations by Andrea Caser, who will deliver both "Technical Protest and Written Reserve" and the “Slide Rule, which was adopted by MLB in 2016. In addition, Yuri Macchiavelli, recipient of the Serie A Baseball Umpire of the Year Award by CNA, will speak on the new rules implemented in 2022.

Nacho Pardo will be the first softball guest to take the stage with three presentations during the CON-X 2023 weekend. “Evaluation and Ranking of Umpires”, “The Unwritten Rules of Umpiring” and “Managing the Game with Body Language and Attitude” are his topics for discussion. After umpiring his last game in 2019 to culminate a 26-year career on the diamond, Nacho Pardo was later appointed WBSC Europe Softball Umpire Director in 2022 to replace Germany's Raoul Machalet, who had held the position since 2020. Machalet will join him on the Rimini stage to analyze the different situations when umpires are called to consult with each other and to offer advice on how to resolve the most complex plays.

Gian Paolo Pelosi, current CNA Softball Technical Manager and one of the most appreciated figures in the world of softball, will also grace the PalaCongressi di Rimini stage and will focus on mechanical movements, especially in regards as to the best positions and angles at home plate. He will discuss what's new with the introduction of the clock and the training programs that CNA Softball and Baseball will implement in the spring of 2023 in preparation for the upcoming season. Forza #Italia!


by Luca Giangrande and Roberto Angotti

(Photo of Yuri Macchiavelli, Alessandro Spera, Marco Taurelli and Lorenzo Bastianello taken before game five of 2022 Italian Baseball Series by PhotoBass)