Astros manager AJ Hinch on the allegation that his team was whistling in the dugout to relay signs in Game 1: “It made me laugh. Because it’s ridiculous. Had I known it would take something like that to set off the Yankees, we would’ve practiced that in spring training.”
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) October 17, 2019
This is the reaction AJ Hinch gave when asked about his team doing something not on the “up and up” during the ALCS this year. Unbelievable. We now know that the Astros have been cheating, as far back as their 2017 title year.
Obviously, there is some sign stealing going on throughout the league, and that will always be true as long as the game of baseball is being played, but MLB has made it clear that using video and technology to do it is unacceptable. Here is a breakdown of what was going on in with the Astros in 2017:
Astros using cameras to steal signs, a breakdown pic.twitter.com/rncm6qzXxw
— Jomboy (@Jomboy_) November 12, 2019
Who knows if the Astros were doing this or something similar in 2018 or 2019? We already know the Yankees were suspicious during the ALCS per George King: “The Yankees were so paranoid they had Gary Sanchez flash Masahiro Tanaka multiple signs in Game 1 with nobody on base after the Astros were suspected of stealing signs in a Game 5 win over the Rays at home in the ALDS.”
A few years ago when the Cardinals hacked into the Astros database, MLB handed down a pretty substantial penalty: they fined the Cardinals 2 million dollars and sent their top two draft picks to the Astros. They also banned Cardinals executive Christopher Correa from baseball.
So now that we know the Astros have cheated their way to multiple pennants and a World Series title, what should their punishment be?