Hour by hour it gets smaller - and - smaller! Grant Williams, yes. Grant Angelos, no.
The glare that Buck Showalter shot home plate umpire Hal Gibson III as the Orioles manager exited the visiting dugout during the eighth inning to pull Brian Matusz spoke volumes.
A late-inning shrinking strike zone had made an already tough task—beating the Angels—tougher.
Angels starter Jered Weaver seemed to get the low strike call throughout the night in the Orioles’ 3-2 loss. But as a one-run Orioles lead turn into a one-run deficit in the bottom of the eighth due in part to three walks (one intentional), Gibson stopped giving the low strike call.
He umpired his first big-league game behind the plate in April.
“It’s an issue like expansion baseball,” Showalter said after Wednesday’s game. “When you expand you have a lot of players in the big leagues who normally wouldn’t be there. He was pretty consistent until late in the game. He’ll get better. He’s got a good attitude and a heart of fire. … That didn’t beat us, but I see the same thing you all do.”
...As Showalter glared during his walk to the mound, Hunter shook his head in the dugout. Several players yelled at Gibson.
“It was a little tight, but I don’t know,” Hunter said of the strike zone. “That’s something you can’t control. Try to control the things you can, and move on. He thought they were balls. I would see it a little differently. I’m a pitcher and he’s an umpire so I can see the disagreement we would have probably had with each other if we talked about it. Other than that, it is what it is.”
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