May 7, 2011

Angel Hernandez Is Utterly Incompetent

Major league baseball players have voted Angel Hernandez as one of the most incompetent umpires in the game. His continued employment is clear evidence that MLB does not care about putting the best umpires on the field.

Hernandez was behind the plate for Friday's Twins/Red Sox game and his calls on many of Tim Wakefield's pitches were shockingly bad, even by the low standards fans now expect from most umps. Here is a graph of Hernandez's calls on all of Wakefield's pitches.
I count 15 pitches that should have been called strikes for Wakefield, but were not. Here are three of plate appearances.

Justin Morneau, 1st inning
Called strike, ball, ball, ball, ball:

Michael Cuddyer, 2nd inning
Ball, ball, ball, called strike, called strike:

Denard Span, 4th inning
Called strike, ball, ball, swinging strike, ball, L8:

Here is the graph for Scott Baker's pitches, with far fewer bad calls (two of those led to Dustin Pedroia's walk in the first inning):

4 comments:

thomas said...

This article disagrees.

http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/article/that-was-a-strike/

allan said...

Thanks for that article.

But:

1. That article is from 2009, and it uses data from 2008.

2. There are still a LOT of missed calls on obvious balls and strikes to both LH and RH batters.

3. It does nothing to refute the opinions of major league players who say (year after year) that Hernandez is one of the worst umps in the game.

4. It does nothing to refute the shitty calls Hernandez made last night.

thomas said...

It does nothing to refute the opinions of major league players who say (year after year) that Hernandez is one of the worst umps in the game.

But isn't that the same as managers giving Jeter a gold glove? Vision might be colored by the perception that jeter is a great fielder.

By the way, I completely agree. Hernandez is terrible. In my opinion the worst umpire in the game. So I was surprised when I came up with that article after a search.

But I still think he's awful.

allan said...

I don't think it is the same.

I don't think that managers and coaches put as much thought into -- and certainly do not have as much invested in - the gold gloves voting while hundreds of batters and pitchers are acutely aware of what happens in their actual plate or mound appearances.

Also, there was a SI players poll several years ago, in which MLB players voted Jeter as the 3rd most over-rated player in the game.