The New York Yankees were caught up in the cheating scandal that forced the Houston Astros to give up multiple draft picks and fined them $5 million. However, both teams’ cheating methods were extremely different, ranging from situational camera usage to high leverage trashcan banging that helped the Astros win the World Series back in 2017.
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman indicated that the only thing stopping the Yankees from winning the World Series that year was Houston cheating illegally and horrifically.
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“The only thing that stopped [the 2017 Yankees] was something that was so illegal and horrific,” Cashman said earlier this spring. “So I get offended when I start hearing we haven’t been to the World Series since ’09.’ … The only thing that derailed us was a cheating circumstance that threw us off.”
By that logic, Houston stole a championship, and the MLB let them get away with it. Fining them a few million and taking some draft picks is seemingly all it takes to earn a World Series title these days. At least that’s the message that commissioner Rob Manfred sent.
However, Astros owner Jim Crane shot back at Cashman earlier this week regarding his comments about Houston’s sign stealing.
“There’s the letter, and you were doing it, too,” Crane told USA Today. “You were there, dude. What are you talking about? If I was one of the teams, and I knew our team was doing it, I’d keep my mouth shut and just go about our business.”
The letter that Crane is referencing includes no more information and then was already admitted to the public. The Yankees were using the YES Network cameras to relay information to runners on 2nd base, who then sent specific information to the batters about what pitch might be coming. The sequence was only used a handful of times, whereas the Astros were using their method at will and in big situations.
“I don’t think anybody’s going to dance to the tune he’s singing,” Cashman said Thursday. “I’d say it’s called deflection, him trying to equate probably … an equivalent of a parking ticket to maybe 162 felonies.”
The reality is simple, neither Cashman nor Crane should be talking about sign-stealing or making egregious just comments. Both were caught up in a disgusting scandal that impacted the image of both teams. Playing the blame game right now doesn’t help anybody. The scandal needs to be left behind once and for all unless sued for education purposes.
“I don’t think anybody equates it to what the Astros did except for Houston,” Cashman said. “[That is] the feedback from everybody in the industry, including Major League Baseball.”