Padres’ 9th-inning comeback snuffed out by MLB's newest umpire villain

It sure seems like at least one umpire is vying to fill the void left by Angel Hernandez's retirement.
Arizona Diamondbacks v San Diego Padres
Arizona Diamondbacks v San Diego Padres / Sean M. Haffey/GettyImages

When the news broke that Angel Hernandez was retiring from MLB, it was met with widespread cheers. Hernandez had become the poster-child for bad umpires who seemed to relish making the game about themselves and having no accountability.

However, the San Diego Padres found out on Thursday that there are still other umps around that are ... not exactly perfect, to say the least.

The Padres found themselves down a run in the ninth inning against Arizona, but they had a chance to tie things up. Jurickson Profar drew a two-out walk and promptly stole second base with Jake Cronenworth at the plate.

But newly controversial umpire Erich Bacchus made a very, very questionable called third strike call on Cronenworth. Both Cronenworth and manager Mike Shildt expressed their displeasure, and the Padres lost by the score of 4-3.

Padres latest witness to umpire Erich Bacchus' villain origin story

If Bacchus' name is vaguely familiar to baseball fans, it is because he is the same umpire who made the controversial ruling from third base that a foul tip hadn't been caught, and that got Rangers manager Bruce Bochy tossed. He is also the umpire who initially ruled that Ronel Blanco had a sticky substance on his glove that ultimately got Blanco suspended (that ruling does at least seem to have been correct).

With Bacchus being among the least consistent callers of balls and strikes in baseball this year, and the fact that he is clearly not afraid to create some controversy in a game given what he has done just this season, it looks like Hernandez could have his heir-apparent calling games right now, and it cost the Padres dearly on Thursday.

Bacchus' error also is just the latest example of why so many are calling for the ball/strike challenge system to be implemented in MLB as soon as possible. It sounds like fans may have to wait while for the league to implement that system as it is seen as unlikely to be place for 2025, so we just have to live with guys like Bacchus fumbling their way through games in the meantime.

More Padres News from Friars on Base