In response to Angel Hernandez’s lawsuit, MLB said that the controversial umpire cost himself a chance at being a part of the 2018 World Series.
Angel Hernandez is one of baseball’s most controversial figures. The umpire has caught the ire of fans in the stands, players in the batter’s box, and managers in the dugout. If you needed further proof of the latter, check out Philadelphia Phillies slugger Kyle Schwarber’s reaction to a bad call that led to his ejection.
Back in 2017, Hernandez sued MLB, alleging that he was being racially discriminated against for not receiving an opportunity to officiate a World Series game since 2005. Hernandez had lost the lawsuit last year, but he went to the Second US Circuit Court of Appeals to try and get it reinstated.
The league responded in a legal filing on Wednesday, per the Associated Press, and said that Hernandez actually had a chance to officiate the 2018 World Series. However, the league claimed that he lost the opportunity after three of his calls at first base were overturned in Game 3 of the ALCS between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.
MLB alleges Angel Hernandez cost himself chance to officiate 2018 World Series
MLB said in their statement that former chief baseball officer Joe Torre selected Hernandez to be a part of the ALDS between Boston and New York as a way for him to earn his spot in the World Series that year. That never came to fruition, as the league cited the three overturned calls in that game.
“Hernandez did not capitalize on that opportunity and did not rise to the occasion,” MLB wrote, h/t Associated Press. “This was the first time since the advent of expanded instant replay in 2014 that an umpire had three calls overturned in a postseason game. Based on his performance during that Division Series playoff game, Torre was not confident in Hernandez’s ability to perform effectively on an even more intense stage, and for this reason did not select him for the World Series that season.”
In Game 3 (via ESPN), Hernandez called Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius safe on a bunt, but replay review overturned it. Gleyber Torres was called out on an infield grounder by Hernandez, but was called safe following review. Then, Gregorius was called out by Hernandez for a double play. Then, the review overturned it to call Gregorius safe.
The umpires that were chosen to officiate the World Series between the Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers were crew chief Ted Barrett, Fieldin Culbreth, Jeff Nelson, Kerwin Danley, Chad Fairchild, Jim Reynolds, and Tim Timmons.
MLB claims that Hernandez was actually close to officiating a World Series in 2018, but his showing at first base at Yankee Stadium for ALDS Game 3 ended any chance of that happening.