The Houston Astros could be in even more hot water fresh off a surprising World Series loss to the Washington Nationals.
According to this report from Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich of The Athletic, Major League Baseball is investigating who had knowledge of the Astros stealing signs during the 2017 season.
“Now, an MLB investigation into the Astros’ culture in the wake of the team’s firing of assistant general manager Brandon Taubman could be expanded to determine who in the organization was aware of the sign-stealing practice — and whether it continued or evolved in subsequent seasons,” the report read.
The Athletic confirmed in this report that the Astros did indeed steal signs during home games, using a camera in the outfield to do so.
Former members of the team confirmed this.
“Four people who were with the Astros in 2017, including pitcher Mike Fiers, said that during that season, the Astros stole signs during home games in real time with the aid of a camera positioned in the outfield,” the report continued.
If proven true, this is a clear violation of MLB rules and will lead to discipline directed at the Astros’ organization.
This all comes amid a MLB investigation surrounding former assistant general manager Brandon Taubman, who was fired during the playoffs following remarks directed at female reporters.
It also comes following a major shake up in the Astros’ front office, which included the departure of all-time great Nolan Ryan.
Houston’s recent success if by now well known. It eventually won the World Series over the Dodgers in 2017 and is coming off yet another appearance in the Fall Classic.
For some, this report paints the organization in a bad light.
“People respect what they’ve accomplished,” one rival general manager said. “They don’t respect the culture they’ve created or some of the methods they choose to utilize to become what they’ve become.”
It will certainly be interesting to see what comes of this moving forward. For now, the Astros have been put on notice.