Are Dodgers fans right to be cranky about Game 1 calls against the Giants?

The Giants of San Francisco shutout the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday night in Game 1 of the NLDS, winning by a final score of 4-0.

To be more precise: Logan Webb, almost entirely on his own, ruled out the Dodgers. He did so until the end of the seventh inning, allowing just five hits while striking out 10.

But it seems some vocal Dodgers fans weren’t so impressed with Webb’s performance, which they attributed in part to what they saw as an unfair hitting zone from the home plate umpire. Carlos Torres.

One of those Dodgers fans, including the tweet quickly took a lot of pull, took a screenshot of a throw that Webb threw that appears to be out of the strike zone but has been called a strike. The caption on the tweet reads: “Not even close. MLB wants 5 bad LMAO games.”

First of all, I’m going to crush conspiracy theories. There is nothing more lousy than fans alleging that the MLB or any other sports league personally asked a referee / umpire to fix the game. This does not happen.

But did Torres perform below par? Hey, sort of – even though he wasn’t that bad like a bunch of Dodgers fans hinted, and it’s even harder to say he irreparably damaged the outcome of the game.

The referees’ scorecards, as usual, did the math here. Torres’ 93% overall accuracy isn’t that good, it’s true. But his overall consistency was 99%, well above the league average. What that means in practice is that his strike zone was crappy, but both sides had quite a game to figure it out, because he was at least collage to that crappy strike zone.

Webb clearly deduced that he could get away with these low, outdoor pitches. The Dodgers had plenty of chances to do the same!

And ultimately, according to the referee’s scorecard, Torres’s calls resulted in an extra 0.73 points for the Giants. That doesn’t make up for a 4-0 deficit, and all Dodgers fans who claim otherwise are reaaaaallly shoot it.

Saturday’s Game 2 is rumored to feature the formidable Angel Hernandez behind the plate. Dodgers fans are already terrified of the prospect, but for what it’s worth: Giants fans are too.

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