Angel Hernandez, Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

You Can Blame Angel Hernandez if You Want, But...


Angel Hernandez is the story of Tuesday’s game if you’re a Giants’ fan. Obviously he allowed all 6 of the A’s runs on Tuesday night, right? Such is the way that the Giants’ season has been going as of late.

It all started when Hunter Pence made a nifty play in right. Immediately after this, he taunted the A’s faithful with a hand to his ear, a la Hulk Hogan. Do not tempt the baseball gods sir, because you will be smitten.

Of course, this is exactly what happened. Pence had already allowed a ball to drop because of a communication error, and the Athletics strung some hits together and scored 4 times in the 3rd. Obviously, this was too much of an offensive hill to climb for the Giants, but you have to play all 9 innings, right?

So they did.

Madison Bumgarner was more Mad than Bum, and his frustration boiled over due to an inconsistent strike zone from home plate umpire Angel Hernandez. He should have been tossed in the 3rd after yelling at the umpire, but Hernandez allowed him to stay in. You’re welcome Giants’ fans.

If MadBum had been tossed, the A’s lineup would have made the 6-1 victory even more lopsided because the bullpen of the Giants has been terrible of late. At one point, Bumgarner was calling for the ball after a shallow pop fly that Joe Panik has taken care of. He didn’t want the ball thrown around the horn or in anyone else’s hands. Bumgarner blatantly disrespected the rookie right there. He also seemed full of arrogance throughout the game, which is odd, because his team was losing 4-0 for a good portion of his appearance. Apparently Bumgarner is the best baseball player on Earth and all of these “teammates” are holding him back.

The Giants recent woes may be a part of this showing of anger, but by each player trying to play the hero, the team ends up the loser. Baseball is a team game. There is a reason the Angels haven’t been able to make the playoffs, even though they have Mike Trout.

The Athletics operate as a team. No one player is bigger than another. That is , besides Nate Freiman, but even he has some competition as of late with Kyle Blanks, Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel all being tall as well.

Angel Hernandez didn’t make Brian Sabean sign Michael Morse as their only offensive insurance this season. Nor did he only allow Sabean to sign Tim Hudson to give the Giants 5 starters.

The key to building a winner isn’t the team that you assemble for Opening Day. It’s the team you build to absorb injuries (admittedly, which the Giants are dealing with) and continue to find ways to win when those injuries occur. If you include the injuries the A’s absorbed in the spring, the A’s are on their 12th starter this season. The Giants have had only 6, yet the A’s lead in staff ERA at 3.21

Sabean even recently admitted that the Giants recent call-ups, Panik and Adam Duvall were not ready for the big leagues. Why is it then, that he did not add more to the team in the offseason?

Angel Pagan missed half of the season last year. No insurance. Guess who’s hurt again this season? Marco Scutaro is injured. No Insurance. Even if Scutaro wasn’t hurt, how much would the aging second baseman be be contributing? More than Brandon Hicks has? Possibly, but that’s not asking much.

The tectonic plates in the Bay Area are shifting again, but don’t fret. The Athletics are just changing the landscape of Bay Area baseball.

Again, you can blame Angel Hernandez if you want, but it’s hard to win 2 games when you only score 1 run total.

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Tags: Oakland Athletics

  • http://BBSTmlb.com Oakland A’s Socks Girl

    LOVE IT! Was gpnna do a recap but you NAILED IT! Im jealous! LOL! GreAt reAd! Go A’s!!

    • http://swinginas.com Jason Burke

      Thank you!

  • Owen W.

    The Giants have more holes than a Swiss cheese factory. I was hoping we might be able to get 4 shutouts, but the mighty Tyler Colvin killed that dream…

  • John Hammelmann

    The A’s are a very good team no doubt. They hit when in crucial moments and are a tear on the base paths. However are you telling me the Angel Hernandez wasn’t crucial to this game? There were at least three missed calls that went in favor of the A’s. Mad Bum was mad because of the clear strike three that should have got him out of the third. 100% of the time that pitch should be called a strike. Another crucial blown call was that balk allowing a runner to advance later in the game. Both of those opportunities lead to the A’s scoring. Kuddos to the A’s taking advantage. However Angel Hernandez is awful.
    I guess A’s fans get their jollies tearing down the Giants. Little brother gets mad when big brother has success in the playoffs and they don’t. Hopefully the A’s don’t disappear this year in October.

    • http://swinginas.com Jason Burke

      We all have a strong dislike for Angel Hernandez, and this piece is not meant to glorify him in any way. Angel Hernandez played a role, but he did not give the A’s all 6 runs. Pence missed a ball that should have been an out. Defensive miscues have hurt the Giants, not just the umpiring crew. I honestly believe that the team that has played better each game has won.

    • Sean Rossi

      The balk was not a blown call. It was controversial because those types of balks aren’t usually called, but it was a balk by definition. However, the very next thing to happen was a base hit into center that would have scored the runner from 2nd anyway, so the balk call was meaningless. Also, Angel didn’t prevent the Giants from scoring more than 1 run.

      • John Hammelmann

        Sean let’s not act like you know what you are talking about here. I actually went back and checked and they didn’t even show the balk on TV, so we are both wrong. When Machi actually balked the cameras were on the bullpen. Also, You can assume that the base hit would have scored Freiman? Yeah that guy is blazing fast!
        Secondly, I guess you can’t really look at it objectively. The strike zone was inconstant which obviously could effective how many runs where scored in either direction. All I am saying is that in this game the calls were slanted in favor of the A’s. A’s still absolutely deserved the victory as they took advantage all miscues.

        • Sean Rossi

          On which feed? The balk was absolutely shown on the Giants feed, I saw Hernandez make the call live. And yes, a base hit will generally score a run from 2nd UNLESS the runner is extremely slow or the fielder has a great arm. Considering the type of defensive miscues the Giants have had lately, he more than would have likely scored.

          As for the strike zone? Well I can’t really argue there. I would have lost money if I had bet on which pitches would have been called strike three. I often hear the argument that you can’t let the strike zone ruin a game and that pitchers and catchers have to “earn calls”. I personally think that’s a bunch of crap, but hey, nobody seems to want a radar enforced strike zone, so no complaining about balls and strikes. Humans make errors.