HOUSTON – Team secrets were brought to light after a months-long investigation by Major League Baseball into sign-stealing by the Houston Astros that included a review of more than 70,000 e-mails and 60 interviews.
On Jan. 12, Houston Astros manager AJ Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow were suspended for the 2020 season without pay by the MLB for sign-stealing during the 2017 and 2018 seasons. However, team owner Jim Crane ultimately decided to fire the two for not stopping the cheating when they were aware of it.
The Astros franchise was also fined $5 million — the largest fine allowed by MLB.
The investigation revealed the Astros utilized technology to decode pitching signs of the opposing team and would signal their batter by banging on a trash can in the dugout.
Sports Illustrated reports, “Two sources familiar with the investigation ... said various Astros personnel told MLB investigators about eight other teams who used technology to steal signs in 2017 or 2018–such was the culture of the time.”
The Boston Red Sox are under investigation for sign stealing. According to the SI report, Red Sox manager Alex Cora was heavily involved in the organization of the cheating scheme while serving as bench coach for the Astros in 2017. The following season, Cora became manager for the Red Sox and the team went on to win the World Series that year.
On Jan. 15, Cora was fired by the Red Sox amid the investigation.
The New York Mets also fired manager Carlos Beltran Thursday in connection with the cheating scandal, after less than 3 months in the position. Beltran was among the group of players named in the sign-stealing scheme.
The 2019 World Series Champions, Washington Nationals, are also suspected to have cheated "but not as much as others,” according to Scott Miller of Bleacher Report.
Whatever future investigations find, do you think other teams will receive the same punishment as the Astros? Let us know in the comments.