Astros Cheat Their Way to the Top and Suffer the Consequences

The Houston Astros have been caught cheating in the World Series run and are paying the price.

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Matthew LeJune

In the past couple of years, the Houston Astros have developed a dynasty in Major League Baseball. Winning the World Series championship in 2017 and having deep playoff runs had the Astros feeling on top of the baseball world; a feeling that was too good to be true. When the Astros coaches morales got out of line, he got desperate to reap the rewards of a true winner.

Cheating and baseball have quite a history with each other. Shoeless Joe Jackson and the White Sox, or known as the Black Sox, cheated baseball fans out of a good World Series when they lost the 1919 World Series on purpose because they made money from gamblers. Players like Alex Rodriguez, Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens have taken performance enhancing drugs to give them and edge in competition. All of these different players and teams situations have the same common theme. They’re cheating the teams fans out of a fair series and cheating their opponent out of a fair chance at the pennet.

The Houston Astros were stacked on the mound and had a ton of play makers in the field during their run, but somehow they kept launching bombs at the plate. The secret behind the big bats was in center field. The Astros set up a camera in center field to record the calls the catcher was sending the pitcher and had it streamed to the dugout in which the calls were sent out to the batter. The punishment for such actions involved a suspension for General Manager Jeff Luhnow and Manager Andrew Jay Hinch, a loss of draft picks in 2020 and 2021, and a five million dollar fine.

Another team that has been taking the MLB by storm is the Boston Red Sox. Throughout the decade Boston has had some historical runs in sports, with the patriots winning several super bowls and the bruins getting a few cups, the Red Sox found themselves playing in a few World Series. Sure enough, it was found that the Red Sox had pulled the same manuever that the Astros had in center field. The Astros got caught first, and have been given a punishment, but the Red Sox still await theirs. Being the commissioner of the league it’s important to establish boundaries with rules and have a good guideline on what punishments should be f0r similar actions. That being said, baseball fans wait to see the punishment that Boston will face for cheating in the game of baseball.

The punishment served is reasonable. Since it was an entire team effort to try and cheat the system, they’re taking away things that can effect the whole team. Several people inside the Astros organization had to know about the scandal before it was big news. Hurting them all, the commissioner took away their coach and draft picks to send a message.

“The attempt by the Astros’ replay review room staff to decode signs,” MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said. “Using the center field camera was originated and executed by lower-level baseball operations employees working in conjunction with Astros players.”

Coaching is the most overlooked part of what a team needs to be good. With a good coach and some talent, teams can be unstoppable, but what makes a good coach? Is it the desire to win? Is it preparing your team for any situation so they’re ready when it comes? Is it wanting to win so bad that you cheat? As a fan watching the world series featuring Houston you wouldn’t have had any idea that this slick camera work is being done right in front of you, which makes the coach even more desirable, he was going out there and winning and nobody had a clue he was cheating the system. A coach’s true morals are what comes into play when it comes to cheating. Is it beyond that player or coach to do that? Or do they want to win that bad.

This is being viewed by the MLB as a team who wanted something they didn’t deserve, and they won’t reap the benefits. The consequences are harsh, but thats the way the commissioner believes he has to crack the whip to keep cheating out of the league.

“Valued and rewarded results over other considerations,” Manfred said. “Combined with a staff of individuals who often lacked direction or sufficient oversight.”

A standout player in the past couple of seasons for Los Angeles has been Cody Bellinger. Bellinger has been launching the ball from behind the plate and is agile in the field. His Dodger team found themselves in the World Series against both the Astros and the Red Sox. The Dodgers had a stacked roster, but lost both of the world series to the two scandalous teams.

“Honestly we’re curious to see what happens,” Bellinger said. “It sucks, man. We were close, but we did it the right way. We could’ve won it if things could’ve gone our way. But it is what it is, man. You really can’t look back on it anymore. We’ll see what happens, what Manfred wants to do. We’ll see.”

Cheating MVP caliber players like Bellinger out of a ring that he deserves is something that is worthy of the punishment being dished out by Manfred. It is likely that the Red Sox will find themselves in a similar situation to the Astros considering the similarity in the accidents. No matter the punishment, cheating needs to stay out of baseball. Athletes have worked hard all their lives to make it to the big stage and they don’t deserve to have it taken from them unjustly.