Joe West is a notoriously bad umpire. His crew is generally regarded as one of the all-around worst in the game. Not surprisingly, the strikezone has been an issue in the first two games of the Brewers-Giants for both teams. The Giants (and their fans) seemed agitated with some of the calls Shaun Marcum was getting on Friday night, and when Ryan Vogelsong was getting squeezed on Saturday, frustrations boiled over.
Normalized strikezone plots by Brooks Baseball show that both teams have reason to be upset at the umpiring this series. Red points indicate strikes called, and the plot is from the umpire’s perspective behind the plate.
To give Holbrook credit, he at least didn’t have as many blatant missed calls as West did, but he also threw out Giants bench coach Ron Wotus for barking about a Vogelsong pitch from the dugout, and then may or may not have missed the call on Rickie Weeks trying to score on Casey McGehee’s single in the next at-bat.
I’m just glad all those fans in San Francisco who packed AT&T Park to see Joe West’s crew work got their money’s worth in the first two games of this series.
UPDATE: Considering the amount of complaints generated by the end of Sunday’s game, it’s probably a good idea to throw in the strikezone plot for the series finale. The Joe West crew hit the Bad Zone Trifecta this weekend.