Umpire Martin ‘Pork’ Burrows officiating at the Cal Ripken World Series


MARTIN BURROWS, centre, with two of his fellow umpires in Branson, Missouri.


Senior Sports Reporter


FOR the fourth time this year, one of the country’s top baseball/softball umpires Martin ‘Pork’ Burrows has gone off to officiate in an international baseball tournament.

Burrows is currently at the Cal Ripken World Series Tournament hosted by Ballparks of America, which features two Bahamian teams, one managed by Javier ‘Sonic’ Bowe and the other by Marlon Bostwick.

The local teams are a part of the eight international teams from Puerto Rico, Taiwan, Canada, Australia, Mexico and Aruba, participating in the 12-and-under tournament.

There are also 20 teams from across the United States playing in the tournament that will wrap up on Saturday.

The tournament returns with a full slate of international teams, which was limited to its participation last year because of COVID-19.

The teams are staying in the Major League-style team suites on the Ballparks of America campus and have a chance to experience numerous attractions throughout the Branson community.

“The tournament is going very well,” Burrows said. “We have two teams from the Bahamas, including the team that won the Caribbean Open in July and another team from Freedom Farm.

“This is my third time here. I was first here in 2019, then I came back in 2021 and now I’m back here again in 2022. It’s a big deal when you get invited back. It means that you must be doing something right for them to invite you back. That’s always good.”

Burrows started his journey in January when he participated in the US Men’s Fastpitch Open in Fort Myers, Florida. Before, he went to West Palm, Florida in March along with four other umpires - Andrew Burrows and Ainsworth Beckford from New Providence and Wayne Basden and Oscar Green from Grand Bahama - to participate in the CBUAO College Baseball Recruitment and Refresher Clinic. After that, Burrows was invited to officiate in another baseball tournament at Cooperstown Dream Park. In addition to that, Burrows was a part of a seven-man international officiating crew for the Babe Ruth Caribbean Baseball Tournament here at the Baillou Hills Sporting Complex in July.

Before the year is out, Burrows is expected to officiate at another international baseball tournament in New Providence before he heads to Grand Bahama for the Greg Christie Memorial Softball Tournament.

If the new baseball stadium is completed, there is also an under-23 international tournament that is being planned for the Bahamas in December to close out what he called an extremely busy year as an umpire.

“It’s a pretty full year for me,” Burrows said. “I might have a chance to go back to Fort Myers in October to officiate at another tournament. I’m just excited to be here.”


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