The Houston Astros probably were looking to build on an impressive 2019 campaign in which they came one game short of winning the World Series with a strong 2020 season. Shortly after the end of the World Series though, a story broke about the team allegedly taping opposing teams' pitching signals. Then using that information to help their hitters know exactly what was going to be coming.
In the wake of the scandal, the MLB has handed out full-season suspensions for both the team's general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager AJ Hinch
What Is The Big Deal?
If you are not that much into baseball maybe the issue does not seem that bad. The thing is knowing the other team's pitching signals could alert batters as to what type of pitch they could come to expect. In simple terms, if you have a good idea where the ball is going to be you have a better chance of hitting it out of the park. Even if the ball is coming in at 98 miles per hour. This cheating probably contributed greatly to the team's postseason run.
The Astros Reacted Quickly
In light of the situation and knowing that the suspensions had been handed out by the commissioner the team wasted no time in making their voice heard. The team held a press conference to announce that both the team manager and the general manager were not going to be part of the organization moving forward.
With the suspension taking effect none of the two men are going to be able to work in Major League Baseball for a year in any capacity. Talk about a turn of events.
Not The Only Such Scandal In Sports This Year
Cheating is nothing new in the sports world. Using video footage to gain an advantage over an opponent is something that has been done in the past in other leagues. This actually happened in the same year.
In the NFL the New England Patriots were involved in a very similar scandal. A TV crew working for a company owned by Patriot's owner Robert Kraft was caught taping sideline signals that where being used by the Cincinnati Bengals sideline to call plays. The strange thing the crew was caught red-handed and still the Patriot's organization received no such ban or pretty much any disciplinary action.
Why The MLB Cracks Down Hard On Cheaters
Of course, this is not the first time that such a scandal has rocked Major League Baseball. There have been numerous scandals over the years. Including alleged game-fixing that saw legendary Pete Rose get banned for life from baseball.
Who can forget the legendary home run chase of the late '90s and early '00s. A great era filled with steroid infused athletes that found its way to the Supreme Court in a highly publicized scandal for the league. This is just another dark page in the MLB history book.