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Honoring Excellence: ISPS 2023 Co-Umpires of the Year

By ISPS, 05/27/24, 8:30PM EDT


Join us in celebrating Francisco Cardona and Jorge Zavala Nuñez, our 2023 ISPS Co-Umpires of the Year! Discover their inspiring journey and contributions to slow-pitch softball.

Francisco Cardona and Jorge Zavala Nuñez have been honored as the ISPS 2023 Co-Umpires of the Year for their dedication and integrity. Learn more about their impact on the slow-pitch softball community and how ISPS supports athletes worldwide.

Honoring Excellence: ISPS 2023 Co-Umpires of the Year

In a vibrant celebration of dedication and excellence, the International Slow Pitch Softball (ISPS) community recently honored two exemplary figures who have significantly contributed to the sport in Honduras. Francisco Cardona and Jorge Zavala Nuñez were both named Co-Umpires of the Year for 2023. These awards were presented by ISPS Honduras National Director, Juan Carlos Andino, marking a momentous occasion in the slow-pitch softball calendar.

A Story of Passion and Commitment

The sun was high in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, casting long shadows on the dusty field where slow-pitch softball enthusiasts gathered. Amidst the excitement of an ongoing tournament, two men stood out, not for their batting prowess or pitching skills, but for their unwavering commitment to fair play and sportsmanship. Francisco Cardona and Jorge Zavala Nuñez, both seasoned umpires, were about to receive the recognition they had long deserved.

Francisco Cardona has been a cornerstone of the Honduran slow-pitch scene. His keen eye for detail and his ability to maintain calm under pressure have earned him respect from players and spectators alike. His journey as an umpire began over a decade ago, driven by a love for the game and a desire to contribute beyond the playing field. "Umpiring is more than making calls; it's about preserving the integrity of the game," says Cardona.

Jorge Zavala Nuñez, on the other hand, is a towering figure both literally and figuratively in the slow-pitch community. His authoritative presence on the field commands respect, and his deep understanding of the game ensures that matches are conducted smoothly and fairly. Nuñez's dedication to slow-pitch softball is evident in the countless hours he has spent mentoring younger umpires and advocating for the sport's growth in Honduras.

The Importance of Umpires in Slow Pitch Softball

Umpires play a critical role in slow-pitch softball, ensuring that games are played fairly and according to the rules. They are the silent guardians of the sport, making split-second decisions that can affect the outcome of games. Their job requires not only a thorough understanding of the rules but also the ability to manage players and maintain control of the game.

The recognition of Francisco Cardona and Jorge Zavala Nuñez underscores the importance of this often-overlooked role. ISPS Commissioner Manuel T. Ferrero III highlighted this during the award presentation, stating, "Our umpires are the backbone of our sport. Without their dedication and fairness, the spirit of slow-pitch softball would be lost. We are proud to honor Francisco and Jorge for their exemplary service."

ISPS's Commitment to Excellence

The ISPS continues to support slow-pitch athletes worldwide by providing opportunities, hosting events, and recognizing those who contribute significantly to the sport. The awards presented to Cardona and Nuñez are part of ISPS's ongoing efforts to promote excellence and integrity within the slow-pitch softball community.

ISPS Commissioner Manuel T. Ferrero III added, "At ISPS, we are committed to nurturing talent and upholding the highest standards of sportsmanship. Francisco and Jorge exemplify these values, and their recognition is well deserved. We look forward to their continued contributions to slow-pitch softball."


As Francisco Cardona and Jorge Zavala Nuñez held their plaques high, the applause from the gathered crowd was more than just appreciation—it was a celebration of the spirit of slow-pitch softball. Their dedication serves as an inspiration to all, reminding us that behind every great game, there are individuals who ensure the integrity and fairness of the sport.

How will you contribute to the spirit of slow-pitch softball? Visit to find out more about how you can get involved.

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