During the baseball off-season, it was found that the Houston Astros cheated their way to a World Series title.
A center field camera and trash barrels were used by the team’s players to steal signs from opposing teams. One would think that with the Houston Astros cheating to the extent that they did, there would be punishment. However, there has been none or at least no punishment that really matters.
Rob Manfred, the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, has confirmed that the team cheated in 2017, throughout the season and playoffs. This ultimately helped them win the World Series.
That brings up the big problem, why is the commissioner not doing anything to bring justice to what was done?
The Astros cheated their way through the season and post-season, they cheated the Los Angeles Dodgers in a hard-fought seven-game series and just gave the sport a terrible look. The only punishments given by the league were fines and taking away their draft picks. That does absolutely nothing to justify what was done.
Baseball, as much as it is a game about wins and losses, its a game where individual accolades are very much considered. In 2017, the first year the camera and trashcan banging was used by Houston, Jose Altuve won the American League MVP award.
Dodgers player, Cody Bellinger, says the award was stolen from New York Yankees outfielder, Aaron Judge. Judge had MVP numbers and it was already debatable when Altuve was announced, winner.
With all being said, one can see why players and fans alike are frustrated with Manfred for not giving any punishment. Some believe he’s actually doing the opposite, giving the Astros immunity from any punishment.
It begs the question, why is Rob Manfred the Commissioner?
Looking at what Manfred has done in this situation, compared to how other professional sports leagues are handling cheating within their own sports, Manfred looks makes baseball look very bad.
Manfred needs to step up and hand out suspensions, in the least. There are many other preferable punishments, such as taking away the Astros championship or giving the team a one year ban from the post-season. Yet, if these don’t seem right to Manfred, suspensions definitely need to happen.
Sign stealing is a natural part of baseball, but there is a limit to what is allowed. The use of electronics to steal signs far exceeds those unwritten limits.
With nothing being done, it gives the league a terrible look. Rob Manfred needs to do something now, if he cares at all, because the whole situation is embarrassing. As MLB Hall of Famer, Derek Jeter said, “[It is] a black eye for the sport.”