Todd Frazier is not happy with MLB umpiring lately.
Following the Mets’ 7-0 defeat on Wednesday, Frazier was asked about Braves starter Sean Newcomb’s performance. Frazier took the opening to take MLB's umpires behind the woodshed for their inability to correctly call balls and strikes. Whether he was blowing off steam about Jacob deGrom’s injury, the Mets’ ailing offense, or just the loss itself, one thing is clear: The Toddfather has reached his tipping point.
Frazier said he’s been unhappy with the umpiring against him for about the past five-to-six games, as he explained that it’s hard for a team to get going when their batters are starting a majority of their at-bats “in the hole.” And while he made it clear he’s not blaming the losses on this, Frazier hopes his comments will enact some change. He has a private meeting with some umpires from the Mets’ previous series against the Padres, where they reviewed and debated specific calls from those games, which he viewed as progress.
The umps’ inaccuracy is a league-wide concern among batters, but even more so for Frazier. Todd has adapted his batting approach in the past couple of years to draw more walks and win those 3-2 count battles, which rely heavily on the accuracy of calls from behind the plate. According to conversations he’s had with Steve Gelbs, Frazier and players around the league are used to a 90-to-93% accuracy mark from umps. According to Gelbs, the current mark is around 84%.
“These umpires have to get better, bottom line,” he vented after Wednesday’s loss.
On one hand, Frazier may have a valid argument. As younger, less experienced umps step into more prominent rolls, there has been talk over the past few years about diminishing accuracy on calls from behind the plate. And anecdotally, the low-outside strike was called far too liberally in Wednesday night's affair. But on the flip side, it’s tough to say how this has directly affected the Mets’ recent string of poor play, and Frazier may be releasing some misguided frustration. Either way, it'll be interesting to see how this plays out over the next few days.
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