On Monday, ESPN reported that the MLB has suspended Houston Astros GM Jeff Luhnow and manager AJ Hinch for the entire 2020 season for their role in the sign-stealing scandal. It was later reported that they were both fired by owner Jim Crane.POST CONTINUES BELOW
In 2019, the Astros were accused of stealing signs from opposing teams en route to winning the 2017 World Series. Four people associated with the team—including former Astros pitcher Mike Fiers—admitted to The Athletic in November that Houston would use a camera in the outfield to steal the signals that catchers showed pitchers during home games.
Throughout the duration of a given game, Astros personnel would decode the signals. When they figured out what sign indicated which pitch would be thrown, the coaching staff would signal the incoming pitches to the batter by banging on trash cans in the dugout. This violates league rules, and prompted the MLB to launch an investigation into the accusations.
The investigation covered a period from 2016 through the present. According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the MLB's Department of Investigations interviewed 68 witnesses (some more than once) of which 23 were current Astros players. Current Mets and Red Sox managers Alex Cora and Carlos Beltran were also implicated. Multiple reports suggest Cora will receive a hefty punishment as well, since he was reportedly the one who devised the scheme.POST CONTINUES BELOW
Along with the suspension of Luhnow and Hinch, the Astros were also stripped of its first and second-round picks in the 2020 and 2021 drafts as well as ordered to pay a $5 million fine. Although it is widely believed that this information helped Houston win the 2017 World Series, the MLB will not force the club to forfeit its only championship.
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