Recently, it all came crashing down for the Houston Astros. First, word broke that they were stealing signs during their World Series winning 2017 season. Then, some video footage was caught by a twitter user which shows them homering off a bunch of 0-2 pitches.
Now, The Athletic MLB’s Evan Drellich points towards two key current managers who were part of the Astros 2017 staff. Furthermore, these two could have played central roles in the sign stealing. Indeed, it is Alex Cora of the Boston Red Sox and newly named New York Mets skipper Carlos Beltran.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 14, 2019
While Cora declined to comment – and that tells you all you need to know about his involvement – Beltran was nice enough to respond to a text.
Here is how Beltran feels about it.
“We took a lot of pride studying pitchers in the computer – that is the only technology that I use and I understand,” Beltrán said. “It was fun seeing guys get to the ballpark to look for little details. (In) the game of baseball, guys for years have given location and if the catchers get lazy and the pitcher doesn’t cover the signs from second base, of course players are going to take advantage.”
Equally important, Beltran veils this as simply using ‘small details’ to get an edge. Therefore, he feels like everyone should get a video camera out and look for ways to exploit the opposition by technology. Basically, that’s what his next quote states.
“I don’t call that cheating. I call that using the small details to take advantage. I think baseball is doing a great job adding new technology to make sure the game is even for both teams.”
Finally, it’s worth asking if Cora (who served as bench coach on that 2017 Astros team) used any sign stealing techniques when he became manager of the Red Sox in 2018. In the 2018 World Series – which the Red Sox won in five games – it seemed like Cora and Boston were just a move ahead of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Now, unless he weighs in and comments; his silence will be very telling.