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Profile: Umpire calls real estate his second career

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When a labor dispute led most Major League Baseball umpires to resign in 1999, Gary Darling made the call to pursue a career in real estate. Leaders of the Major League Umpires Association, the union that represented the umpires, claimed that policies adopted by MLB Commissioner Bud Selig violated its collective bargaining agreements with the MLB's National League and American League. Darling, who had served as a National League umpire since 1988, was among 57 of 68 umpires who handed in their resignations. Intended as a negotiating tactic to hasten a resolution to the dispute, the strategy backfired. Darling was among 22 umpires who lost their jobs when Major League Baseball accepted their resignations. He took a crash course in real estate in Arizona, completing 18 classes in 10 days, and he earned his real estate license in October 1999. "I came home and went to real estate school almost immediately," he said. "I was planning on getting my umpire job back, but you neve...