MLB umpire salary 2021: List of top 10 highest paid MLB umpires

MLB umpire salary 2021: List of top 10 highest paid MLB umpires

Most people and fans with a soft spot for baseball know about MLB and its players. However, few people are aware of the existence of MLB referees salaries. Being a sports official only means ensuring that the game is fair and upholds quality. So, how much is an MLB umpire salary, and what does it entail?

MLB umpire salary
A group of Official Major League baseballs are arranged for a studio portrait on December 15, 2021 in Alexandria, Virginia. Photo: 2021 Diamond Images
Source: Getty Images

Being an MLB seems like a great job; however, many challenges come with the career. Some of the benefits include visiting different areas, coming into contact with some best professional players, experiencing various world-class stadiums, among other benefits. However, their pay does not match what they do, at least for most. How much do MLB umpires make 2021?

How much does an umpire make in MLB?

Once you have spent several years in the field, a major league umpire salary is about $450,000 per year. The salary ranges from $110,000 to $432,800. However, one starts with a pay of about $150,000.

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Do MLB umpires fly first class?

Yes, referees in the MLB enjoy various benefits since experienced MLB's work throughout the year. For instance, they get to fly first class and receive about four weeks of paid vacation during the regular baseball season.

MLB umpire salary
An official Major League baseball made by Rawlings Sporting Goods sits in the pocket of a vintage catcher's mitt for a studio portrait in Alexandria, Virginia. Photo: 2021 Diamond Images
Source: Getty Images

MLB umpire per diem is also a benefit for the professionals as part of the compensation package where they receive a $340 per diem to cover food and hotel costs. In addition, the professionals also receive additional compensation for their expenses and bonuses for working an entire postseason.

Who is the highest paid umpire?

Some of the most paid umpires in MLB have many years of experience in the job. However, with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Major League Baseball umpire salaries underwent a 30 per cent slash. Here is a list of some of the best paid professionals in MLB.

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1. Bruce Froemming - 5,163 games

mlb umpire per diem
Major League Baseball umpire Bruce Froemming between innings of a game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Colorado Rockies at PNC Park. The Pirates defeated the Rockies 3-0. Photo: George Gojkovich
Source: Getty Images

For those wondering, "Who is the most famous umpire in baseball?" Bruce is termed the most popular referee. Not only is he a referee, but he is also the special assistant to the Vice President of Umpiring.

2. Joe West - 5000+ games

who is the highest paid umpire?
Umpire Joe West looks on before Game Three of the American League Championship Series between the Houston Astros and the Boston Red Sox at Minute Maid Park. Photo: Bob Levey
Source: Getty Images

Joe is the most famous and highest paid in the game. He started in the '70s and has been active to date. He has been around the game for the longest time and is part of some memorable moments in the game's history.

He is the head of the World Umpires Association and is in charge of negotiating contracts on behalf of other referees. He also oversees the protective gear and equipment worn by other referees. MLB umpire Joe West salary is six-figure.

3. Joe Brinkman - 4505 games

MLB umpire salary
Joe Brinkman (L) exchanges words with Cleveland Indians manager Mike Hargrove during the first inning of play in game two of the Division Series with the Boston Red Sox. Photo: ANTHONY ONCHAK
Source: Getty Images

Joe has been in the game for equally a long time. He started in 1972 and recently retired in 2006. Some of his memorable moments include keeping George Brett from hurting McClelland.

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4. Derryl Cousins - 4496 games

Do MLB umpires fly first class?
Manager Manny Acta #11 of the Cleveland Indians discusses a call with umpire Derryl Cousins #13 during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Progressive Field. Photo: Jason Miller
Source: Getty Images

Derryl commenced working as a referee and 1979 and retired in 2012. He has had a remarkable career in the game.

5. Mike Reilly - 4491 games

MLB umpire salary
Umpire crew chief Mike Reilly oversees the action at first base as the St. Louis Cardinals face the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Photo: Doug Pensinger
Source: Getty Images

Mike has been in the field since 1977 and recently called it quit in 2011 when he retired. He is also remembered to have umpired the Caribbean World Series in the 1970s. Other highest paid umpires include the following;

  • Gerry Davis - 4468 games
  • Jerry Crawford — 4371 games
  • Ed Montague — 4369 games
  • Tim McClelland — 4236 games
  • Dana DeMuth — 4098 games

How to become an MLB umpire

Just like any profession requires acquiring specific skills, this is no different when becoming a major league baseball referee. To commence the journey of becoming a professional referee, you must attend the Harry Wendelstedt Umpire School or the Minor League Baseball Umpire Training Academy.

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How much do MLB umpires make annually? (Updated salary)

After successful joining, one ought to complete the annual course. Then, about one-fifth of the participants are selected for an MLB advanced course that lasts only one week at the end of the period. After this, a few candidates are successfully chosen to act and practice as a referee for a short while during season's leagues and rookie leagues.

During the short leagues, a professional earns as little as $2,000 in a month. To scale up the ladder, it could take more than a decade to reach the MLB.

With the above list of MLB umpire salaries in 2021, it is evident that the profession is becoming competitive. Despite starting with a not-so-attractive pay, you can rest assured that it will get better for you with many years of experience and skill.

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Source: Briefly News

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