Grand Slam * Stats & News
Updated: November 4, 2018
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Copyright © 1997-2018
Grand Slam/Marco Stoovelaar
Baseball & Softball
Compiled and Copyright © 1997-2018 by Marco Stoovelaar

(Story & Photos by Marco Stoovelaar)

Awards for Linda Steijger & Daniël Bouman; Decorations for Arie Nokkert & Jos Welboren

ALMERE-STAD (Neth.) - On Saturday (November 3), the annual season-ending meeting for game-officials in Dutch baseball and softball was held at the clubhouse of baseball- and softball-club Almere '90 in Almere-Stad. In previous years, the meeting always took place at the Head Office of the Royal Netherlands Baseball and Softball Association (KNBSB) in Nieuwegein. Early this year, the Head Office moved to a new location in Nieuwegein. Instead of organizing the meeting at the new site, it was decided to move it to the complex of Almere '90.

At the well-visited meeting, umpires, official scorers and commissioners of both baseball softball looked back at the previous season and looked ahead to next year. The officials were addressed by Jacco Lansbergen, who is one of the persons who is responsible for competition affairs at the KNBSB-Office, Bart Volkerijk, the Executive Director of the KNBSB and Remko de Bie, who recently was named into the KNBSB Board as its new treasurer. Awards were handed out to softball-umpire Daniël Bouman and official scorer Linda Steijger, while softball-umpires Arie Nokkert and Jos Welboren were decorated.

...Arie Nokkert and Jos Welboren were decorated...
(© Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
In his address, Bart Volkerijk not only thanked all the game-officials for their hard work and efforts this season and looks forward to work with them together again next year. But he also thanked Jacco Lansbergen, Ruud Verhoeff and Roy Vink, who coordinate all competition affairs at the Head Office and are responsible for the communication with the game officials.

Volkerijk continued by thanking the members of the Baseball Umpiring Commission, Johan Brandsma (commissioner), Henk van der Linde, René Ras and Olav Steijger, the members of the Softball Umpiring Commission, Bob Gieskens and Hans Hornstra and the members of the Scoring Commission, Alex van den Berg (commissioner), Dennis Duin, Stefan Slinger and Linda Steijger. Volkerijk then closed by thanking Marco Stoovelaar for his work as the historian and archivist of the KNBSB.

Thereafter, Volkerijk mentioned that some veteran umpires had retired. After completion of the baseball-season, umpires Henny Jansen and Olav Steijger announced their retirement. After the softball-season, Arie Nokkert did the same, while Jos Welboren had retired earlier in the year.

Nokkert and Welboren were asked to come forward, while Volkerijk mentioned their accomplishments through the years. Both then were handed the KNBSB-decoration pin for their many efforts. Both Jansen and Steijger did not attend the meeting, but were decorated earlier in their career.

Next on the agenda was the handing out of two new Awards. In the past, the Umpire of the Year Award had been handed out several times, but that tradition ended some years ago. Recently, it was decided to introduce three new Awards for officials. Not only to stimulate officials, but also to honor them. One for the Most Promising Official, one for the Official of the Year and one for the Club Official of the Year. For the first two Awards, (national) umpires and official scorers in both baseball and softball are eligible. For the third one, only officials are eligible who are leading games as a member of a club. The first two Awards will be handed out during the season-ending meeting of the officials, the third one during the KNBSB Congress along with the Award for the Club of the Year and the Slugger, which is the highest recognition of the KNBSB for persons or organizations/events in promotional activities.

...Linda Steijger and Daniël Bouman with their Awards...
(© Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
The Commissioners of the three above mentioned commissions are asked to hand in nominations for the Awards. A special commission then will go over the nominees and pick a winner. The same commission also picks the winners of several other Awards that will be handed out annually. The decisions of the winners of the annual Awards that are handed out to the best players in baseball and softbal remain a task of the Scoring Committee.

The Award for the Most Promising Official was named after Fred van Groningen Schinkel, who last year retired as an umpire after having officiated games in the Dutch big league for a record 46 years (1972-2017). Van Groningen Schinkel then introduced the Award after first thanking the ones who had proposed to name the Award after him, stating that this was an enormous honor. The Award will be handed out annually to a promising game-official. The first winner of the Award is softball-umpire Daniël Bouman. Van Groningen Schinkel mentioned that he is a very promising umpire, who got good reviews this season, not only from accompanying experienced umpires, but also from the clubs he officiated. With that, Bouman not only is a talented umpire, but also someone who can promote to the Golden League in the near future.

Next, Remko de Bie handed out the Official of the Year Award, which went to veteran official scorer Linda Steijger. She not only is an Official Scorer for 21 years, but besides that, she is very active in scoring development, conducting scoring courses, writing scoring scourses and translating scoring rules for both the European as well the World Federation (WBSC). Since 2002, she was a member of the Scoring Work Group, later Scoring Commission of the European Baseball Confederation (CEB) of which she became the Chairman last year. Linda Steijger made her international scoring debut in 2001, then traveled abroad as official scorer for the first time in 2006 for the World Women Baseball Championship in Taiwan. Amongst her tournaments as Official Scorer in later years were the European Championship/Olympic Qualifier in 2007 (Spain), the Olympic Games in 2008 (China), the World Baseball Championship in 2009 (Europe) and 2001 (Panama), the Premier12 in 2015 (Taiwan/Japan) and World Junior Baseball Championship in 2017 (Canada). Amongst her tournaments as Scoring Director were the World Under-21 Baseball Championship in 2013 (Taiwan), the World Softball Championship in 2014 (Netherlands), the European Softball Championship in 2015 (Netherlands), the European Baseball Championship in 2016 (Netherlands), the World Women Baseball Championship this year (USA) and the Super 6 Baseball Softball in September in Hoofddorp (Netherlands).

(November 3)

Related Articles:
Umpires Henny Jansen and Olav Steijger retire. (November 3)
Umpires Arie Nokkert and Jos Welboren retire. (November 3)

...KNBSB Director Bart Volkerijk addresses the attendees in Almere...

...Fred van Groningen Schinkel hands out the Award named after him to Daniël Bouman...

...KNBSB-treasurer Remko de Bie hands out the Award for Official of the Year to Linda Steijger...
(© All Photos: Marco Stoovelaar)

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