Umpires are going to make calls fans don't agree with, that's just the nature of sports, but usually when an ump makes a bad call they stick to their decision. Umpire Angel Hernandez -- who has a reputation of making questionable calls -- took a different approach, admitting he "guessed" on a wild play during a Royals vs. Cleveland game Tuesday night.
Royals catcher Salvador Perez came up to the plate in the third inning with runners on second and third. He hit a fly ball to deep right, and that is when the confusion started.
Here is the play in its entirety:
After the game, Hernandez said the lights on the outfield wall's scoreboard got in his way of seeing what happened.
"Our goal was to get the play right, and that's exactly what we did. We talk about this," Hernandez told a pool reporter after the game, per the Kansas City Star. "Replay is an extension of what we do out there. As you saw, I got basically blinded by the outfield scoreboard. The pixels on the lights were as clear as white can be. I was trying to make out what happened out there."
Hernandez continued, and surprisingly admitted that because he was "blinded," he just took a guess as to what happened.
"The harder I looked, the less I could see. So I was trying to read the players to see what they did with the ball. And I had to come out with the call. I basically guessed on the wrong call. So as soon as I turned around, [home plate umpire] Edwin [Moscoso] started walking towards me. We got the crew together. And we fixed the problem."
Whit Merrifield was on third base and Andrew Benintendi was on second when the play started. Benintendi was thrown off by the call, running when the ball fell, but reversing back to second when Hernandez signaled for a caught ball (even though the ball was not caught.) Benintendi then was caught between second and third base and -- despite being tagged out-- was awarded third.
The entire situation led to confusion and anger from Cleveland.
Hernandez explained after the game that Benintendi was awarded third base -- despite being tagged out -- because of the call he made on the field.
"He responded to my out call. That's what got him hung up. When we got together, that's what we pieced together. He was between second and third. That's why we decided to put him at third base," Hernandez said. "He wasn't going to advance any further than third base. And the batter runner, of course, we decided as a crew, that he was going to go no further than first base. And obviously, we scored the run."