Foul Ball: The Astros Cheating Scandal

Photo via Bob Levey/Getty Images

It has almost been a month since the Washington Nationals shocked the sports world by becoming champions of baseball. The team was able to beat the Houston Astros in seven games. While the Nationals were celebrating their first-ever championship win in our nation’s capital, the loser of the World Series was dealing with a little bit more than just the post-game losing blues. 

It was reported that the Astros were the targets of a cheating scandal that took place during their 2017 World Series-winning run. 

It has been discovered that when the Astros played in their home ballpark, they had a camera rigged up with a feed that was being viewed inside the Astros dugout. With the footage from the camera in view of Astros personnel, they were able to determine which pitches were coming to Astros hitters based on the signs from the opposing catcher. 

If the pitch coming was a changeup, you could hear a loud bang coming from the Astros dugout. This is a clear example of cheating and catches the Astros red-handed. 

What makes this even more interesting is that former Astros pitcher Mike Fiers has confirmed these claims when he was with the team. 

It seems that the more this story is out in the open, the more evidence and stories come out that does not look good for the Houston based baseball organization. A recent video that details the championship run of the Astros shows the underground portion of the dugout. While players are passing through the screen, you can see a laptop, presumably hooked up to the camera feed, and right next to the laptop is a trash can, which they most likely used to signal when an offspeed pitch is on the way. 

This information is just terrible all around. It’s a bad look for the Astros, a bad look for the players, and a bad look for baseball in general. 

There has not been a scandal in baseball with this kind of severity for quite some time, now that the evidence is out in the open, and more and more coming in, the question to ask is what will MLB do when it comes to assigning punishments to the people in the Astros organization responsible. 

Commissioner of Baseball Rob Manfred has stated that the MLB is undergoing a thorough investigation into the matter before making any decisions in terms of punishments. Some people suggest a stripping of the Astros 2017 World Series championship, but would that really solve anything? That punishment seems to only hurt the fans instead of being a punishment designed to affect the Astros personnel. The punishment that might be deemed most efficient would be a postseason ban for the team, which would prohibit the Astros from competing in a World Series for whoever many years that the MLB offices seem suitable. 

Whatever the outcome is of this Astros scandal is, the MLB must do the right thing to resolve this issue. Cheating to try and get a competitive edge is something that should not go unpunished. With baseball’s history of steroid use, this is not a situation that MLB would want on top of that. The Astros are in hot water and it is up to the MLB office now to handle the situation accordingly.

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