Before Sunday’s frustrating loss to the St. Louis Cardinals had wrapped — the Yankees‘ fifth in a row, which might be the end of the embarrassment or the start of something bigger — home plate umpire Ed Hickox had already become the story, long before he nearly stumbled to the ground and was propped up by the tandem of Yadier Molina and Jose Trevino.
Midway through a mid-inning rally, Aaron Boone got himself rung, with Matt Blake soon to follow. Undeterred, Hickox still finished that inning off in grand style, complementing the ridiculous 3-2 curve he called a strike to Marwin Gonzalez with several more absurd decisions with Matt Carpenter at the plate.
Those Hickox blunders cut the Yankees’ fifth-inning rally off at the head, forcing Aaron Judge to pick up the pieces after those around him were unceremoniously sent back to their cave. While there were plenty of non-umpire reasons the Bombers lost this particular game (leaving a small village on base, leaky bullpen, awful starter), Hickox’s judgment certainly didn’t help.
Cardinals fans, who would like to cameo in the body of this article right now, have fed me the following message: “Did you SEE the Adam Wainwright curve to Judge in his second AB?! Hickox was bad for both sides!”
We see you. We hear you. We feel you. Ed Hickox seems to be bad at his job, extending across the aisle. But did you see the umpire scorecard for Sunday’s game? The hurtin’ he put on this particular contest was … unequal.
Yankees lost three runs thanks to Ed Hickox umpiring vs St. Louis Cardinals
2.62 runs taken away from a depleted Yankees lineup. Just gorgeous. And shoutout to the scorecard crew for pinpointing the 3-2 pitch to Paul DeJong that started St. Louis’ second-inning rally against a scattered Frankie Montas. By any metric, he didn’t walk. Paired with the fifth-inning calls, it’s all the more egregious that Hickox didn’t notice the ball tick the corner.
It was almost like, in the early innings, Hickox decided to play a game where he’d squeeze both Wainwright and Montas to learn what makes them tick. Then, as the contest progressed, he got hot and bored and decided hitters were having too much fun these days. Let the kids play, huh? Not on old Ed’s watch! Let the kids sit down.
Did the scorecard convince you what a total disaster this was? If not, maybe it’ll help if we throw some humans in there so you can see what Marwin Gonzalez was staring at with the bases loaded, no outs, and a 3-2 count down two runs.
Did the Yankees lose because of Ed Hickox? No. For the first time in several days, the offense came alive and scored nine times. That should earn you a win nine times out of 10.
Did Ed Hickox help matters by tilting a three-run game in the Cardinals’ direction by a total of … three runs? You decide.