MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred may be the most disliked man in baseball, but umpire Angel Hernandez could be a close second.
The veteran umpire, often criticized for his consistently inaccurate strike one, was at it again on Sunday night when the Brewers took on the Phillies. Both teams’ players were visibly upset multiple times with different calls — mostly pitches outside the zone that were called strikes , as Hernandez’s zone was abnormally large on Sunday.
But when Phillies slugger Kyle Schwarber struck out on a pitch outside the zone in the ninth inning with his team down one run, he absolutely lost it.
Kyle Schwarber had enough of Angel Hernandez’ calls at the plate tonight pic.twitter.com/kAaIWM1Hvi
— Jomboy Media (@JomboyMedia) April 25, 2022
The former National threw down his bat and gesticulated frantically while screaming at Hernandez. It appeared as if Schwarber’s objection was less about his specific strikeout or how Hernandez’s umpire impacted his team and more so that his umpiring was so bad that it was hurting the game, as Schwarber can be seen saying “all night” and “both sides” during his meltdown. In fact, the pitch he struck out on was barely outside and not usually one that would elicit the type of response Schwarber gave.
“I’m not here to bury anyone, but it wasn’t very good,” Schwarber said in his postgame availability. “You wish … I don’t know how to really say it. It just wasn’t very good. Guys were doing a really good job tonight of not saying much. It just got to me to where I was going to stick up for some other guys.”
The result of the game reflected a pitcher-friendly strike zone. The Brewers won 1-0 in a contest that featured only eight hits and 26 strikeouts between the two teams. Milwaukee starter Eric Lauer punched out a career-high 13 in just six innings , while Phillies starter Aaron Nola sat down nine in seven frames.
On Monday morning, the Twitter account “@UmpScorecards” released its report for Hernandez’s job performance on Sunday. Unsurprisingly, it wasn’t pretty.
— Umpire Scorecards (@UmpScorecards) April 25, 2022
Overall, he called 88% of pitches correctly and was 88% consistent — six points worse than the 94% league average. The worst part of his outing Sunday was his called strike accuracy, which was a putrid 77% — 11 points below league average . Eleven of Hernandez’s 48 called strikes were outside the zone.
After the game, Brewers outfielder Andrew McCutchen told ESPN that Schwarber was speaking for both teams’ players, as well as the fans.
“Yeah, we were all watching the game. We were out here playing it,” he said. “The game is already as hard as it is. … But at the end of the day, we just have to be better, man. “
Even the announcers in ESPN’s “Sunday Night Baseball’ booth commented on Hernandez’s zone.
“Schwarber is speaking for both sides tonight,” announcer Karl Ravech said. “We saw a lot of those demonstrations, none like that. We saw them as players went back to the bench.”
“I’m surprised it took this long for somebody to have that kind of an outburst,” analyst David Cone added.
It wasn’t just the players competing who objected to Hernandez on Sunday. Several current and former players took to social media to share their displeasure with the longtime MLB umpire.
“Just a quick update Angel Hernandez still sucks as an umpire,” former MLB pitcher Brett Myers tweeted.
“Angel Hernandez needs to be fired. He’s just an awful umpire,” posted ex-MLB player-turned-broadcaster Lou Merloni.
“I’m here for Angel Hernandez strike zone FOREVER,” Angels pitcher Noah Syndergaard sarcastically tweeted.