RICHMOND- Every game is recorded in the MLB. But did recording go over the line? For the Houston Astros, there might have been a reason as to why they won the World Series in 2017.
An article stemming from New York surfaced saying the Astros were illegally stealing signs from their opposition. Baseball officials immediately cracked down on the story to find who is responsible for both sides.
The leader of the calls is Oakland A’s pitcher Mike Fiers who coincidentally was on the roster in 2017 when the Astros defeated the Dodgers to capture the World Series title.
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal and Even Drellich released a report on Twitter detailing how the team used electronic equipment to steal signs.
Multiple sources have also released reports that Houston used an outfield camera to record other team’s catchers while watching a video of the footage in the clubhouse hallway.
Reports say Astros staffers and players would try to decode the signals and relay the expected upcoming pitches to batters using a loud banging noise, most likely through a trash can. The report says the alleged cheating took place during the regular season but no confirmation as to whether it happened during the postseason.
Among the teams potentially victimized by the Astros were the New York Yankees, who lost the American League Championship Series in seven games.
In 2018, the Cleveland Indians and Boston Red Sox both found an Astros employee taking pictures near their dugouts in an attempt to steal their signs. In the 2019 ALCS, the Yankees once again accused the Astros of stealing signs.
Since these allegations have come out, there is video appearing to show Houston decoding signs and relaying them to its hitters during games. Many baseball fans are not pleased, comparing them to the New England Patriots.
The Patriots, however, have been able to win even without the supposed scandals placed on them. The Astros might not be able to recover if a harsh punishment is imposed (providing these rumors are true)
Now that cheating allegations are out, the Astros have released a statement regarding these claims stating “Regarding the story posted by The Athletic earlier today, the Houston Astros organization has begun an investigation in cooperation with Major League Baseball. It would not be appropriate to comment further on this matter at this time.”
If the Astros are indeed guilty of such heinous actions, baseball will need to come down harshly to make sure nothing like this happens again.
If the Astros are innocent of such actions, then the punishment needs to come in the direction of the Yankees who are the ones who came forward with the story as it could be just a case of sour grapes from a franchise who, despite 27 world series titles, has not won a title since 2009.
The sign-stealing allegation is the latest in what has become a string of questionable situations involving the Astros. Recently, the organization fired executive Brandon Taubman after it was revealed that he directed taunts about pitcher Roberto Osuna to female journalists.
Not a good look for a franchise that had the world raving about winning the World Series after Hurricane Harvey had damaged the city. It was supposed to be a feel-good city that is looking more and more like a black mark.
Houston recently fell in 7 games to the Washington Nationals in the 2019 World Series.