An unfortunate reality in Major League Baseball is that if Angel Hernandez is on the umpiring crew for a game, some wild stuff probably is going to happen.
Such was the case in the Boston Red Sox’s 9-5 loss to the Texas Rangers on Tuesday at Fenway Park.
During the fifth inning, Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi took a called strike on a pitch that looked a little outside. The next pitch he hacked at and grounded out, and on his way to the dugout he shouted something at Hernandez, who was the home plate umpire. That prompted first base ump Vic Carapazza to eject Benintendi. Alex Cora came out to his player’s defense, and after the Sox manager spoke with Carapazza for a moment, Hernandez came walking over, and eventually Cora was ejected, too.
After the game, Cora explained what happened on both ejections.
“With Benny, he disagreed with the first pitch of that at-bat and he hit the ground ball and he screamed something to Angel,” Cora said, as seen on NESN’s postgame coverage. “Everybody saw it, he was walking towards the dugout, but they didn’t like what he said and threw him out. I’ve got to go out there and defend my player, I didn’t agree with (Benintendi getting ejected). He’s not at the plate screaming at Angel or whatever, that’s not the first time somebody disagrees and screams from afar to the umpire. Just let (the umpires) know and that was it.
“Benny’s screaming at Angel, but he’s going to the dugout, so it’s not like he’s arguing with Angel. I just didn’t agree with that.”
Here are some other notes from Tuesday’s Rangers-Red Sox game:
— Darwinzon Hernandez made his first big league start Tuesday, and there were some high and low points.
The southpaw retired the side in order in the first inning, and ultimately struck out the first four batters he faced. But after that, both his velocity and command were all over the place, which resulted in him making it only three-plus innings.
Hernandez allowed four runs (three earned) on three hits with seven strikeouts and five walks.
“The stuff is great and all that, but he was erratic,” Cora said.
Cora later added, however, that Hernandez will “be a good one.”
The hope from the organization is that Hernandez pans out as a starting pitcher. Judging by how he’s been this season at all levels, a big focus for him in order to stay on that path is to have some longevity in his outings and provide multiple quality innings instead of just one or two good ones before flaming out.
— Speaking of pitching prospects, Mike Shawaryn has looked pretty good.
The right-hander pitched the eighth and ninth, retiring all six batters he faced, striking out four. Over six innings since getting called up, Shawaryn has allowed one run on one hit with 11 strikeouts and no walks in six innings of work.
— Spot starting has been an issue for the Red Sox much of this season.
In 13 fill-in starts, the pitchers have a 2-7 record with a 7.62 ERA over 41 1/3 innings. They’ve walked 21 and struck out 35 in that stretch, good for an underwhelming 1.65 WHIP.
The Red Sox desperately need Nathan Eovaldi back, but in the interim, they need to get better showings from spot starters.
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images