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Angel Hernandez laughably calls strike on pitch a foot outside in WBC (Video)

Angel Hernandez strikeUmpire Angel Hernandez truly embarrassed himself Thursday with one of the worst strike calls we have seen.

Hernandez’s laughable call came during the top of the ninth inning of a Pool 2 game between Team USA and the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic. Pinch hitter Erick Aybar was up with Nelson Cruz on third, one out, and the score 1-1. With the game tied and a spot in the WBC semifinals on the line, the environment was tense and every pitch counted. But Hernandez gave closer Craig Kimbrel the call on a breaking ball a foot off the plate. The pitch was so far outside that it was wide of the batter’s box chalk. Catcher J.P. Arencibia didn’t even bother to try to frame the pitch because it was so bad. Yet Hernandez called it a strike, causing Aybar to lose his mind.

The Dominican infielder composed himself and managed to line a 97 mph fastball into right field on the next pitch to score Cruz and give his team the lead. Jose Reyes drove in Aybar with a base hit, and the Dominican team won the game 3-1 to earn a spot in the WBC semifinals.

Hernandez’s absurd call predictably drew plenty of jeers from baseball fans watching the game. Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Brandon McCarthy summed up the call:

Oakland A’s pitcher Brett Anderson had an even better line after seeing Aybar get a hit on the next pitch:

Here’s a look at the call in GIF form:

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Umpire Jeff Nelson’s error on Omar Infante call costs Yankees (Video)

The Yankees were hurt by a brutal call during the eighth inning of ALCS Game 2 against the Tigers on Sunday that cost them two runs in a 3-0 loss.

Tigers second baseman Omar Infante was advancing from first to second on a two-out single to right by Austin Jackson. Right fielder Nick Swisher threw into second to catch Infante off the base, and Robinson Cano tagged him out. Unfortunately, second base umpire Jeff Nelson called Infante safe, keeping the inning going for Detroit.

The next better was pinch-hitter Avisail Cabrera, who blooped a single to right to score Infante and make it 2-0. Yankees manager Joe Girardi went out to replace pitcher Boone Logan, and was ejected after arguing with Nelson about the awful call.

Miguel Cabrera followed with a single to score Jackson, giving the Tigers a 3-0 lead. They eventually got out of a bases loaded jam and escaped down just 3-0, but not before the blown call cost them two runs.

Girardi was ticked off about the call after the loss.

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Braves fans litter field after controversial infield fly call (Video)

The debut of baseball’s one-game wild-card playoff format was marred by a mess that would make the NFL’s replacement refs cringe.

The Braves-Cardinals game Friday night was delayed in the eighth inning after Atlanta fans began littering the field with debris in protest of a call that went against their team.

With the Braves trailing 6-3 with one out and men on first and second, Atlanta’s Andrelton Simmons hit a pop fly to left that fell between Cardinals shortstop Pete Kozma and left fielder Matt Holliday. However, left field umpire Sam Holbrook called the infield fly rule right before the ball dropped — halfway out into the outfield.

Instead of bases loaded and one out, Atlanta was left with men on second and third with two outs. The fans were so upset they began littering the field with debris, causing an 18-minute delay. Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez protested the call. Atlanta’s next batter, pinch-hitter Brian McCann, walked to load the bases, but Michael Bourn struck out to end the inning, and the Braves went on to lose 6-3.

Tough way for Chipper Jones’ career to end, especially after he railed against the one-game playoff format last month. Braves fans won’t forgive the umpires for this call anytime soon.

Here’s the official definition of the rule per MLB rules:

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Dodgers given run on awful call by umpires, beat Nationals by one (Video)

The Nationals are fighting to maintain the lead in the NL East and top spot in the NL for the playoffs, so they can hardly afford mistakes by their players, much less ones by the umpires. But that’s what they dealt with on Wednesday night.

The Dodgers were up 5-0 in the bottom of the 4th and had runners on second and third with two outs. Hanley Ramirez grounded a ball to third baseman Ryan Zimmerman, who tagged out Adrian Gonzalez who was going from second to third. Zimmerman tagged out Gonzalez for the final out before Matt Kemp, who was on third, reached home plate, as you can see in the image below:

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Davey Johnson earns first ejection on awful call by umpire Marvin Hudson (Video)

Nationals manager Davey Johnson earned his first ejection of the season after arguing an awful call at first base by umpire Marvin Hudson on Saturday.

Braves left fielder Martin Prado was leading off the bottom of the sixth and hit a come-backer to pitcher Edwin Jackson. The ball went off Jackson’s glove, but he recovered and threw to first to get Prado by a step. Or so we thought.

Umpire Marvin Hudson called Prado safe at first, leaving the Nats in disbelief. He apparently ruled that first baseman Adam LaRoche’s foot wasn’t on the bag, which not only was incorrect, but also a difficult call for him to make based on where he was standing:

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Umpire Jerry Meals badly blows Mark Teixeira call at first (Picture)

The Yankees-Orioles game ended in controversy Saturday thanks to a badly blown call by umpire Jerry Meals that cost the Yankees the game.

Mark Teixeira was up in the 9th inning with one out and the Yankees trailing the Orioles 5-4. Teixeira grounded a ball to second with men on the corners, and the Orioles attempted to turn two. They got Nick Swisher out with a force at second, and then J.J. Hardy threw to first to try and get Teixeira on the double play. Even though Teixeira clearly beat the throw, he was called out by Jerry Meals to end the game.

Had Teixeira rightfully been called safe, Chris Dickerson crossing home would have counted as a run to tie the game at 5. The Yankees would have had Alex Rodriguez up with two outs, a man on first, and the game tied 5-5. Even if A-Rod made the last out of the inning, the game would still have continued to the bottom of the 9th tied.

Below is a video of the play:

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Umpire Greg Gibson spiked near eye by Torii Hunter (Video)

Umpire Greg Gibson left Wednesday’s Angels-Indians game after being spiked near the eye by Torii Hunter on a freak play.

Hunter was attempting to score from first on a double by Kendrys Morales in the bottom of the fifth. As he went diving into home plate, he angled his body away from home plate to try to avoid the tag from catcher Carlos Santana. Hunter’s right leg flew into the air and his cleat caught home plate umpire Greg Gibson in the side of the head.

Gibson began bleeding near his left eye immediately after being spiked by Hunter’s cleat. He was treated by a medical team and exited the game, leaving the umpiring crew down a man. Umpire Manny Gonzalez moved from first to home to replace Gibson.

Angels announcer Victor Rojas said on the telecast that Gibson received stitches for the cut and that he was taken to the hospital for precautionary X-rays.

We frequently get on umpires for making horrible calls like this one, but Wednesday’s incident is a reminder that the job — especially for umpires behind the plate — has its hazards.