How Much Do Umpires Get Paid?


Umpires are the officials who enforce the rules in some sports, including baseball, softball and cricket. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports salaries for umpires, referees and other sports officials. As of May 2009, the median salary was $22,880, with 50 percent of sports officials earning between $17,820 and $32,710.

Salary by Industry

Most of the 14,860 umpires, referees and other sports officials were employed in five industries: local government, at an annual mean salary of $28,040; elementary and secondary schools, at a mean salary of $31,370; other amusement and recreation industries, at $24,010; spectator sports, at $29,850; and civic and social organizations, at $25,230.

Salary by State

The states with the highest mean salaries for sports officials were New York, at $56,570; Michigan, at $48,270; Pennsylvania, at $44,610; Vermont, at $42,200; and Connecticut, at $41,920. The states with the lowest mean salaries were Georgia, at $15,940; South Carolina, at $16,850; and Utah, at $20,560.

Salary by Metropolitan Area

The metropolitan areas with the highest mean salaries for sports officials were Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at $41,390; Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-Goleta, California, at $38,330; Burlington-South Burlington, Vermont, at $37,990; Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, Wisconsin, at $37,640; and Austin-Round Rock, Texas, at $33,820. The areas with the lowest mean salaries were Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Georgia, at $15,890; Springfield, Missouri, at $17,510; and the Kansas nonmetropolitan area, at $18,110.

Major League Baseball Umpire Salaries

According to the Major League Baseball website, professional baseball umpires start at a salary of $1,800 each month in the minor leagues. In the Major Leagues, umpire salaries range from $84,000 to $300,000 a year. According to the BLS, baseball umpires usually need seven to 10 years of experience in the minors before making it to the big leagues.

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