It has been widely reported that fans at Nationals Park began chanting “Lock him up!” with Donald Trump in attendance for Game 5 of the World Series. What hasn’t been widely reported is Nationals fans began chanting that same phrase in the direction of umpire Lance Barksdale after he made a couple very bad calls to the detriment of the home team.
One of the most egregious no-calls came in the bottom of the 6th inning when Nationals pitcher Tanner Rainey should have been awarded a strikeout on Michael Brantley. Instead, Barksdale called ball and in a mic’d up exchange, he seemed to blame Nats catcher Yan Gomes for springing up too quickly to throw the ball around the horn: “Oh, so it’s my fault?” Gomes could be heard saying, sarcastically.
Then, in the 7th, Barksdale called strike 3 on a full count pitch to Victor Robles that was clearly high and outside, extinguishing a potential two out rally. Robles tossed the bat back toward Barksdale in disgust.
Poor Lance took a beating on Twitter following a controversial performance on baseball’s biggest stage.
Keep in mind the Nats last 7-1, so any error by the umpire is ultimately inconsequential when you can’t record any runs.