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'Ugly' scene between Giants fans, umps after controversial ending originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
Giants fans are some of the best in all of sports, but Thursday night, even a few of them reached a breaking point.
The Giants saw their historic 2021 MLB season come to a crushing end in Game 5 of the National League Division Series when first base umpire Gabe Morales determined that Wilmer Flores didn't check his swing on a pitch by Los Angeles Dodgers ace Max Scherzer, who was pitching in relief.
Morales ruled that Flores swung, giving the Dodgers a 2-1 victory in the winner-take-all game. Los Angeles advances to the NLCS where they will take on the Atlanta Braves, while the Giants start preparing for the offseason.
Boos from the thousands of Giants fans rained down on Morales. Soon after, boos wouldn't be the only thing raining down on him.
As Morales and the other five umpires left the playing field and exited through a tunnel on the first base side of home plate at Oracle Park, fans threw objects, including cups of beer at them.
Oracle Park erupts in boos and Giants fans start throwing beer cans on the field after a checked swing is called for strike 3. That’s the ball game and the season for the winningest Giants team in franchise history. The Dodgers move on to the NLCS. @kron4news #ResilientSF pic.twitter.com/jIoB2FhNNH
— Kylen Mills (@KylenMills) October 15, 2021
NBC Sports Bay Area analyst Shawn Estes was in the tunnel waiting to come onto the field after the final out and detailed what he witnessed.
"Well, everybody's cleared out," Estes said of Oracle Park shortly after the Giants lost. "I don't think anybody wanted to watch the Dodgers celebrate on the field with the exception of a few Dodgers fans that are here hanging out behind the dugout supporting their team.
"We were in the tunnel going onto the field. That's where the umpires leave the field. It got a little ugly there with some of the fans hanging over the railing, throwing beer on the umpires. Wasn't a great sight. Everybody's frustrated, but then everybody got the heck out of here because nobody wanted to see the Dodgers celebrate on their field."
— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) October 15, 2021
After the game, Morales and left field umpire Ted Barrett spoke to the media about the call. Morales said he had seen the replay of the swing, and when asked by a reporter if he felt differently about the call, Barrett fielded the question.
"Yeah, no, we, yeah, yeah, he doesn't want to say," Barrett said.
The controversial check swing is a bitter way for the Giants' season to end, and based on what was said after the game, Morales doesn't feel great about what happened either.