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Oft-criticized umpire Angel Hernandez retires

Jamie Squire / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Angel Hernandez, who was widely considered baseball's most controversial and polarizing umpire, retired from MLB after a 34-year career.

"I have decided that I want to spend more time with my family," Hernandez said Monday in a statement. "Needless to say, there have been many positive changes in the game of baseball since I first entered the profession. This includes the expansion and promotion of minorities. I am proud that I was able to be an active participant in that goal while being a Major League (Baseball) umpire."

Hernandez spent the past two weeks negotiating a financial settlement with the league, according to USA Today's Bob Nightengale.

MLB approached the veteran umpire about moving on and he agreed, a source told Ken Rosenthal and Sam Blum of The Athletic, who add Hernandez's lawyer insisted the umpire wasn't forced out.

The 62-year-old worked his first MLB game on May 23, 1991, and his last contest on May 9, 2024, as the home plate umpire between the Chicago White Sox and Cleveland Guardians.

Hernandez clashed with the league off the field, as he filed a 2017 racial discrimination lawsuit that stated he was passed over for a crew chief position and opportunities to work the World Series because of race. The lawsuit was dismissed in 2021.

Hall of Fame pitcher CC Sabathia, who called Hernandez "absolutely terrible" in October 2018 following a playoff game, took to social media to respond to the retirement news:

Texas Rangers rookie Wyatt Langford was the last player to publicly criticize Hernandez, calling the ump's strike zone "almost comical" following a game in mid-April.

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