Astros Cheating Scandal

The Houston Astros 2017 cheating scandal rocked the sports world

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Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash

This shows a birds eye view of one of the baseball stadiums that the Astros played at and didn't lose in

Two years ago the Houston Astros brought their first World Series title back to the city of Houston.

This photo shows the nationals outfield which is where the Astros played the world series last year.

The 2017 Astros were one of the best teams to ever play the game of baseball. With a record of 101 wins and 61 loses, they got themselves into the playoffs and won their division. Even in the post season the Astros had a lot success beating the Boston Red Sox in the ALDS, and the New York Yankees in the ALCS.

Then came the World Series.

The Astros had to go up against the LA Dodgers, who had an amazing season as well, going (104/58) during the regular season. The series went 7 games and the Astros ended up wining 5-1. This was their biggest accomplishment ever, being a new team: their first World Series title! The future was looking bright for this 2017 Astros team, now ranked with the top American Leaugue West teams, a roster of top performers that included the Angels, Athletics, Mariners, and Rangers. None of their peers could compete with the Astros in recent seasons. On the road they had the best record of any team, 53/28. When a team can win games on the road they have a huge advantage over most teams because they are in a different atmosphere and its more difficult to win.

This shows a birds eye view of the Blue Jays stadium. One of the baseball stadiums that the Astros played at and didn’t lose in.

Clearly, everything was going well for the Astros until this year.

There was a rumor going around that the Astros had cheated in the 2017 season. It was suggested that they had recorded the catchers signs from center field, and in the dugout someone was banging on a trash can letting the batter know what pitch was coming.

This was a big deal in the baseball world.

Major League Baseball looked into this situation and discovered that it was true. The Astros had someone in the club house stealing signs and relaying it to the batter so they would know what pitch was coming. People were able to pull up clips from the game and in the background, the banging on the trashcan was audible just prior to the batter hitting a home run or getting a hit. In the World Series the Astros had to face one of the greatest pitchers of all-time, Clayton Kershaw, who is known to have some of the nastiest pitches in the league.  He pitched in game 2 of the world series, and through a total of 51 breaking balls, out of those 51 breaking balls not a single one was swung and missed at. This is statistically very unlikely.

This is some of the Atlanta Braves, which was one of the teams to hit some of the Astros in the preseason.

It was clear that a punishment was in order. The Astros manager AJ Hinch and the General Manager Jim Crane were suspended for the whole 2020 season, and the team was also fined 5 million dollars. A lot of people believe that there should have been a bigger punishment for their actions, even suggesting that some players in volved should never be able to play the sport ever again.

It seems clear that there should be a bigger punishment for what happened, although most of the players are already paying the price. In 5 pre-season games, six Astros have already been hit by a pitch including 2017 MVP Jose Altuve. No team liked what the Astros did and they want to make them suffer by beating them to prove that they aren’t as good as they have been, but the Astros players are saying that they are going to come out this year and win another title and prove everyone wrong. The Astros are probably not going to make the post season this year and will moreover finish with a horrible record, but nobody really knows what is going to happen with this team, so we just have to wait and see.