Ronald Ellis Barnes
- Height 6' 4", Weight 196 lb.
- High School Salesian High School (Richmond)
Ron Barnes began umpiring in the Northwest League in 1980, working there in 1981 as well. In 1982, he moved up to the California League and to the Texas League in 1983. He stayed there until 1986, then umpired in the AAA Pacific Coast League from 1987 to 1989. In 1990 he umpired his first major league game and he continued as a part-time umpire until 1997, never working more than 61 games which came in his final season. The rest of the time, he was back in the PCL.
He was then off the major league umpire ranks for a few years, and in 2000 filed a $20 million lawsuit against Major League Baseball claiming he had been passed over for a full-time promotion to the majors in favor of lower-rated but younger umpires, solely due to his age. As part of the settlement of the suit, Barnes returned to the PCL and was reintegrated in the ranks of fill-in umpires in 2001. This time he was working games in both leagues, the two leagues' roster of umpires having been consolidated following the disastrous mass resignation strategy carried on by the Major League Umpires Association in 1999. He had been umpiring in the independent Western Baseball League in 2000. Barnes worked 55 games in 2001 and then two more in 2002 before being dismissed at the end of the year.
In 2005, he moved to the independent Golden Baseball League and became its umpire-in-chief in 2008 until the league ceased operations following the 2010 season.
- Marty James: "Former big league umpire Barnes returns to his roots", Napa Valley Register, June 24, 2003.