Recently, the news broke that the Houston Astros were involved in a sign stealing scandal that might have cost the Dodgers the World Series. Rob Manfred, the commissioner of the MLB, decided that the sanctions against the Astros would be a one-year suspension of the manager A.J. Hinch and General Manager Jeff Luhnow. Some other sanctions included a $5 million dollar fine (pennies in the world of the MLB) and a loss of draft picks.
These sanctions, in my opinion, are a disgrace to professional sports. It is not a stretch to say that sign stealing significantly impacted how well the Astros played throughout their playoff run. Thus, for the sanctity of the MLB and professional sports as a whole, the 2017 World Series title should be stripped from the Astros and Jose Altuvez (AL MVP 2017) should be suspended from the league for at least the season. The MLB needs to set some kind of standard for how to deal with cheating, and this has been made especially clear after the sanctions were released.
Players in the MLB have even publicly asked Altuve to give up the AL MVP award.”
How many players would cheat to win the World Series if they know it will only have minimal repercussions? If you look at the scandals that involved Pete Rose, A-Rod and Mcguire the MLB castigated these individuals. Pete Rose now has a lifetime ban, A-Rod was banned for 211 games and Mcquire even had to go in front of a Congressional hearing, and the MLB wants to ban some managers and fine the Astros? As a fan of the sport I find this almost insulting. Even more insulting is the fact that the 2017 AL MVP Jose Altuve faced no repercussions for the scandal whatsoever. Altuve is now viewed as a pariah across the league, and rightly so. This is the same man that hit a walk off homerun against the Yankees in the ALCS and told players not to touch his jersey, and then after crossing Homeplate he goes inside to change instead of celebrating with his team? This is all but an admission of guilt. Players in the MLB have even publicly asked Altuve to give up the AL MVP award. I find it disturbing that A-Rod gets suspended a season for using PEDs, which is commonplace at this point in the MLB and Altuve wears a buzzer giving him every single pitch and nothing? At that point hand him the walk off home run.
I am not the only one who feels this passionately about the Astros, there is uproar throughout the MLB and across all professional sports. Lebron, A-Rod, Aaron Judge and the entirety of the MLB made their disgust for the scandal very clear. MLB pitchers have publicly said they will aim for Astros players on the mound and they were not lying when they said this either. Altuve got hit on his first spring training game and it will likely show no signs of stopping during the season. You can even bet on the Over/Under on how many pitches the Astros will get hit by this season (the current number is 85 pitches), and if I was a betting man (I very much am) I could very well see that number being higher. The MLB is claiming that the reason they did not punish individual players because they granted them immunity if they participated in the investigations, but this is preposterous and I do not understand the move by the league. Have players not always participated in investigations with the league, and were they not still punished harshly? The MLB should listen to the outcry and take it into their own hands to punish the 2017 Astros.