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MLB cheating scandal

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Just now, Balta1701 said:

FWIW, I agree with you that the manager's statement was BS, but it's also worth noting that per the MLB report, every single interviewed player said that if Hinch had told them to stop then it would have stopped.

Yes, and none of them said if Dallas Keuchel told me to stop, I would have stopped right away.

Hinch was the boss; Keuchel was just a cog in the wheel and he couldn't make any change and I don't think it would be breaking news that most of the pitchers probably didn't think very highly of their cheating.

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2 minutes ago, Look at Ray Ray Run said:

Yes, and none of them said if Dallas Keuchel told me to stop, I would have stopped right away.

Hinch was the boss; Keuchel was just a cog in the wheel and he couldn't make any change and I don't think it would be breaking news that most of the pitchers probably didn't think very highly of their cheating.

Then they go to Hinch and say "This needs to stop, there's a line and we don't want to cross it." Instead, they looked the other way. And in that, we learn their character.

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1 minute ago, Balta1701 said:

Then they go to Hinch and say "This needs to stop, there's a line and we don't want to cross it." Instead, they looked the other way. And in that, we learn their character.

But where was the line? The perception was others are doing this too, we just have to do it better. 

The problem with this is it was very clearly cheating, but it fit in that gray area of "well, sign stealing is a part of the game." 

The pitchers on that team are also likely cheating by putting a substance on the ball to increase their spin rates. Bauer has broken this down, and others have insinuated this is 100% happening... Now similarly to above, illegal substances have been used by pitchers and betters for a century and players like excuse their actions and decisions by saying everyone does it. How can Keuchel or Verlander go to Hinch and say this abuse of sign stealing needs to stop while the pitchers were also cheating in some way?

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28 minutes ago, Balta1701 said:

But I also have every right to judge the person based on whether or not they did the right thing in that situation.

We indeed all get to have opinions, yes. 

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7 minutes ago, Look at Ray Ray Run said:

But where was the line? The perception was others are doing this too, we just have to do it better. 

The problem with this is it was very clearly cheating, but it fit in that gray area of "well, sign stealing is a part of the game." 

The pitchers on that team are also likely cheating by putting a substance on the ball to increase their spin rates. Bauer has broken this down, and others have insinuated this is 100% happening... Now similarly to above, illegal substances have been used by pitchers and betters for a century and players like excuse their actions and decisions by saying everyone does it. How can Keuchel or Verlander go to Hinch and say this abuse of sign stealing needs to stop while the pitchers were also cheating in some way?

So your argument is that Dallas Keuchel himself is a far worse cheater who was lucky enough not to be caught, and this is supposed to rehabilitate Keuchel's image how? If Keuchel was doctoring the ball and that contributed to the dropoff in his peripherals when he left Houston last year, then the White Sox are at a very substantial risk with that contract.

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9 minutes ago, Balta1701 said:

So your argument is that Dallas Keuchel himself is a far worse cheater who was lucky enough not to be caught, and this is supposed to rehabilitate Keuchel's image how? If Keuchel was doctoring the ball and that contributed to the dropoff in his peripherals when he left Houston last year, then the White Sox are at a very substantial risk with that contract.

Balta, I'm going to break some very sad news to you based on how you view people who "cheat" in baseball.

Since the beginning of time, a vast majority of players have participated in some form of cheating. The game has been defined by players searching for questionably minute edges that fall within the gray area of legality. Pitchers used to use spit, batters used greenies. Some players corked their bats, while others put a substance on their hat to get a better grip on the baseball. Some players went on to use steroids, while others used video technology to steal signs. One team stole data from another, while another lied about how much they were paying players so they could acquire more of them. The Braves weren't alone in that either as it was a widely known way of skirting the international rules. Some teams even went as far as to pay agents to smuggle players and then give them the upper hand in signing them - using force in SOME cases.

Every single era of baseball has had some form of cheating/one-upping to gain a competitive edge. If you told me as a senior in college that if I took steroids, I would have been a guaranteed big leaguer - supporting my family for generations to come via my income - I would have taken steroids I think. I like to tell myself I wouldn't, and for the record I have turned them down when offered but that was because the benefit wasn't guaranteed for me; had I been on the fringe of MLB, I would have absolutely done whatever it took to provide for my family. 

You view all these things through some moralistic lens, but things are much foggier than the clear choice you are painting this as. Keuchel was provided a tool by the team to increase his production and value; greatly improving his families livelihoods and elongating his career, and from his side of things, everyone was doing it. Veterans, rookies, and coaching staffs were pushing and promoting it. Keuchel did what was not only best for his career and his future, but also what he felt gave him an even playing field with everyone else.

This isn't as simplistic as I don't cheat... these aren't decisions you've ever had to make in your life. I am not arguing that breaking the rules is OK, but I am certainly arguing that one voice speaking out against a culture of one-upsmaniship, in which everyone searches for questionable edges over their competition, was not going to change or do anything... and it doesn't make you a poor leader, it just makes you another player in the long line of players who did what they thought they had to do to maintain this life and to maintain this dream.

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13 minutes ago, Balta1701 said:

So your argument is that Dallas Keuchel himself is a far worse cheater who was lucky enough not to be caught, and this is supposed to rehabilitate Keuchel's image how? If Keuchel was doctoring the ball and that contributed to the dropoff in his peripherals when he left Houston last year, then the White Sox are at a very substantial risk with that contract.

Honestly I think you should just say that you don't accept an apology or statement from him because he is involved in a cheating scandal(whether peripherally or intimately) and leave it at that.   There will never be a punishment levied that will satisfy you, you weren't satisfied with Melkys apology or any other players and you don't like cheating or gaming the system.   And that's fine. but trying to twist it that everyone accepts and approves of Keuchels supposed cheating is not getting anywhere.   Nobody here approves of cheating and nobody wants the Sox to cheat, signing Keuchel and being excited for the signing doesn't mean that we approve.

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58 minutes ago, Balta1701 said:

But I also have every right to judge the person based on whether or not they did the right thing in that situation.

Proof he didn't go to management only to be turned away?

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2 minutes ago, Kyyle23 said:

Honestly I think you should just say that you don't accept an apology or statement from him because he is involved in a cheating scandal(whether peripherally or intimately) and leave it at that.   There will never be a punishment levied that will satisfy you, you weren't satisfied with Melkys apology or any other players and you don't like cheating or gaming the system.   And that's fine. but trying to twist it that everyone accepts and approves of Keuchels supposed cheating is not getting anywhere.   Nobody here approves of cheating and nobody wants the Sox to cheat, signing Keuchel and being excited for the signing doesn't mean that we approve.

That's fine and all, but Balta is better off following another game/sport if he is this angry over every attempt to gain an edge. It's entrenched in the culture of the game, and it's never ever going away.

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20 minutes ago, Balta1701 said:

So your argument is that Dallas Keuchel himself is a far worse cheater who was lucky enough not to be caught, and this is supposed to rehabilitate Keuchel's image how? If Keuchel was doctoring the ball and that contributed to the dropoff in his peripherals when he left Houston last year, then the White Sox are at a very substantial risk with that contract.

Or he had the same poor season statistically that players sitting out the season typically experience, see Lance Lynn.

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37 minutes ago, Balta1701 said:

Then they go to Hinch and say "This needs to stop, there's a line and we don't want to cross it." Instead, they looked the other way. And in that, we learn their character.

Lmfao

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6 minutes ago, Look at Ray Ray Run said:

Balta, I'm going to break some very sad news to you based on how you view people who "cheat" in baseball.

Since the beginning of time, a vast majority of players have participated in some form of cheating. The game has been defined by players searching for questionably minute edges that fall within the gray area of legality. Pitchers used to use spit, batters used greenies. Some players corked their bats, while others put a substance on their hat to get a better grip on the baseball. Some players went on to use steroids, while others used video technology to steal signs. One team stole data from another, while another lied about how much they were paying players so they could acquire more of them. The Braves weren't alone in that either as it was a widely known way of skirting the international rules. Some teams even went as far as to pay agents to smuggle players and then give them the upper hand in signing them - using force in SOME cases.

Every single era of baseball has had some form of cheating/one-upping to gain a competitive edge. If you told me as a senior in college that if I took steroids, I would have been a guaranteed big leaguer - supporting my family for generations to come via my income - I would have taken steroids I think. I like to tell myself I wouldn't, and for the record I have turned them down when offered but that was because the benefit wasn't guaranteed for me; had I been on the fringe of MLB, I would have absolutely done whatever it took to provide for my family. 

You view all these things through some moralistic lens, but things are much foggier than the clear choice you are painting this as. Keuchel was provided a tool by the team to increase his production and value; greatly improving his families livelihoods and elongating his career, and from his side of things, everyone was doing it. Veterans, rookies, and coaching staffs were pushing and promoting it. Keuchel did what was not only best for his career and his future, but also what he felt gave him an even playing field with everyone else.

This isn't as simplistic as I don't cheat... these aren't decisions you've ever had to make in your life. I am not arguing that breaking the rules is OK, but I am certainly arguing that one voice speaking out against a culture of one-upsmaniship, in which everyone searches for questionable edges over their competition, was not going to change or do anything... and it doesn't make you a poor leader, it just makes you another player in the long line of players who did what they thought they had to do to maintain this life and to maintain this dream.

And now I will turn this right back at you.

Hypothetically, imagine Dallas Keuchel was doctoring the ball during his entire time with the Astros and he stops now that he has departed. The White Sox just committed $55.5 million to him. He comes out with the White Sox and his performance suffers dramatically as he's no longer doctoring the ball. As you said, he did what was best for his career and his future and as a consequence he gets $55.5 million from the White Sox that in this hypothetical he would not be able to earn had he not been doing what you alleged. In the process he damages the White Sox's chances at the playoffs any year he is here. 

All your justifications just explained why you'd be ok with Keuchel screwing over any team that signed him to a big free agent contract. IMO, it's exactly how Melky Cabrera got his contract with the White Sox as well and fell apart the second he got here, so it's not like we haven't seen that before. If you want to cheer for your team, it's not just morality...you also care about guys who cheat to get ahead and screw over your team in the process.

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Melky had two seasons in Toronto after he was busted with PEDs and they were pretty good, and tbh his seasons with the Sox were pretty in line with his career outside of his Sf season 

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Just now, Balta1701 said:

And now I will turn this right back at you.

Hypothetically, imagine Dallas Keuchel was doctoring the ball during his entire time with the Astros and he stops now that he has departed. The White Sox just committed $55.5 million to him. He comes out with the White Sox and his performance suffers dramatically as he's no longer doctoring the ball. As you said, he did what was best for his career and his future and as a consequence he gets $55.5 million from the White Sox that in this hypothetical he will not be able to earn. In the process he damages the White Sox's chances at the playoffs any year he is here. 

All your justifications just explained why you'd be ok with Keuchel screwing over any team that signed him to a big free agent contract. IMO, it's exactly how Melky Cabrera got his contract with the White Sox as well and fell apart the second he got here, so it's not like we haven't seen that before. If you want to cheer for your team, it's not just morality...you also care about guys who cheat to get ahead and screw over your team in the process.

The White Sox need not act naive or oblivious to this - it was not some big secret. Hell, I know about it and knew about it before Bauer said anything. How? Because the data is publicly available. l will say there wasn't a dramatic change in his spin rate in Atlanta, and most Houston pitchers have taken their increased spin rate with them when they went to new teams - meaning they likely took with them their learnings... which is exactly how this shit spreads from team to team. 

Keuchel isn't screwing anyone over anymore than the Braves screwed Ozzie Albies out of what he's actually worth; or anymore than the current arbitration process screws over young players. I'm not going to cry for ownership groups who have implemented a process that pays you less when you're more valuable. 

As I said, even if you chose not to cheat on some moralistic ground you will still benefit from cheating if you are a MLB player. It is happening all around you. What we view as an egregious act of cheating may be viewed in the game as common practice. You're asking one man to change a century of culture. You're asking one player to go against something that is better for his families future in the name of alturism. You are then judging a mans leadership under the guise that he didn't throw his entire team under the bus. 

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I don't disagree with Balta except the part where he should just be hounded for sucking. 

There is a grey area here where if we had signed a hitter from the 2017 astros it would be more fair to hound him than the pitchers. There is likely, beyond the not shaking the boat and accepting rules being governed by the manager, even more pressure for pitchers to just focus on pitchers and not tell the position players how to play.

However, the guy had the opportunity to do a the correct thing in this situation and didn't do it. Imagine had it come out that Keuchel tried to stop it internally, would fans here be upset? No they'd be through the moon that he did something so amazing and just proof that a white sox player is great.

I understand not wanting the unpleasantness, which the white sox had nothing to do with, to interfere with the white sox season by way of Keuchel. But if you could isolate that, I'm struggling to understand how the board sentiment could exist that wants to see the astros sent to the sun (of which I am a part of), but also that criticizing an astros player that benefitted (by way of a world series) from that cheating, who now happens to be a white sox, behaved completely normal and actually, now that we think about it, cheating is normal and good.

Balta certainly has the maximalist stance against cheating. I liked melky, and I think you serve and then move on. But Keuchel isn't unscathed from this. And it's fair to want shame to be put on him because that astros team did some bullshit.

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I can't believe a scandal involing the Astros has somehow in some way spun into a negative against the Sox. I guess I shouldn't be too surprised by this with some of our posters. 

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And let’s not forget the players, not one of whom, it seems, showed the courage to say, “this is wrong.”

And if so, is this not symptomatic of a society that tends to view right and wrong as fluid and changeable, subject to one’s self-interest? “Everything’s relative dude, it’s all a social construct.”

No, it was wrong. Other teams are doing it, maybe, is no excuse. 

I really thought these guys were better than this. Stupid me.

Yes, other teams are doing it, and Alex Cora, at least, deserves the same punishment. But that doesn’t assuage my pain that these lovable underdogs stooped so low. 

Altuve? Really? The little kid “midget”* who came back to the tryout and said “give me another chance coach, please?”

Springer? The boy who overcame stuttering and dedicates himself to helping other kids like him? You’re better than this. 

Correa, who as a child worked so hard at baseball despite desperate poverty that he fielded grounders near tree roots until his face was black and blue? 

Even Bregman, who got to #2 in MVP voting entirely by dint of an almost pathological work ethic?

They all fell in with this hare-brained stunt. Didn’t someone have the guts to say, just once, “what are we doing? Why are we banging on garbage cans during a baseball game?”

My mother used to say, “if everyone else jumps off a cliff, are you going to jump too?” 

Apparently so. The Astros just hit rock bottom.

Does this mean I will not root for the Astros next season? 

I’m 62 years old and I have done my fair share of stupid things. But I have always tried to learn from those mistakes. Maybe from this humiliation the players will return to their humble roots. Yes, I really do believe everyone involved will learn and grow from this. I expect sincere contrition in the coming days, and if it is so, I will forgive them, as I have often needed forgiveness myself.

https://www.crawfishboxes.com/2020/1/13/21064786/houston-astros-you-reap-what-you-sow

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1 hour ago, Moan4Yoan said:

Like most big companies these days, I wonder if the MLB has a whistleblower program in which a player could’ve informed the MLB on the cheating going on anonymously?

This is an interesting question and would help in situations like this. I'm not aware of one but I'll ask.

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1 hour ago, Balta1701 said:

FWIW, I agree with you that the manager's statement was BS, but it's also worth noting that per the MLB report, every single interviewed player said that if Hinch had told them to stop then it would have stopped.

Of course the players will say that. They will not get punished and they can blame it all on the manager.

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26 minutes ago, Look at Ray Ray Run said:

That's fine and all, but Balta is better off following another game/sport if he is this angry over every attempt to gain an edge. It's entrenched in the culture of the game, and it's never ever going away.

It's in all sports. It's the  "if you aren't cheating, you aren't trying" attitude in competition. From these in baseball to the Patriots video taping sidelines. In college there isn't a single D1 school that doesn't do some form of payment to athletes. It just depends on how you view infractions, from speeding tickets to homicide. The gray area is the severity of the cheating. Seeing all of this form the training room, where others aren't allowed to go due to HIPPA violations and league rules, a lot of crap goes on.

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https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/28482487/the-five-biggest-victims-astros-sign-stealing-scandal
 

3. Mike Fiers. Other players have privately complained about his decision to speak to The Athletic about the Astros' sign stealing and his criticism of the cheating. Maybe those unhappy teammates should consider the issue from his perspective. Their decision to break established rules put him and other players who wanted nothing to do with the sign stealing in a terrible position of either going along with the cheating, effectively condoning it -- which is why Hinch was suspended -- or speaking out against it. For the rest of Fiers' career, he'll have to deal with the whispers from some peers angrily complaining about him, when what they should do is reach out to apologize to him for how they compromised his experience.

You could say the same for the other players on the '17 Astros who might not have shared in the sign stealing. Even if he had no involvement, Justin Verlander's one championship in a Hall of Fame career will be forever tarnished.

 

Article for some reason left out Yu Darvish...

 

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Moving away from Keuchel for a bit, is there a shadier person in baseball than Luhnow? His tenure in Houston:

-accused of stealing Cardinals data on his way out to Houston

-allowed cheating scandal that would end up being his legacy

-traded for domestic abuser while he was still under investigation

-handled the sexist actions of his staff by attempting to sweep it under the rug

-gets suspended and fired for cheating before throwing players and employees under the bus

Seriously what a piece of shit, what else am I missing?

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Just now, reiks12 said:

Moving away from Keuchel for a bit, is there a shadier person in baseball than Luhnow? His tenure in Houston:

-accused of stealing Cardinals data on his way out to Houston

-allowed cheating scandal that would end up being his legacy

-traded for domestic abuser while he was still under investigation

-handled the sexist actions of his staff by attempting to sweep it under the rug

-gets suspended and fired for cheating before throwing players and employees under the bus

Seriously what a piece of shit, what else am I missing?

Trying to kill the minors.

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1 minute ago, reiks12 said:

Moving away from Keuchel for a bit, is there a shadier person in baseball than Luhnow? His tenure in Houston:

-accused of stealing Cardinals data on his way out to Houston

-allowed cheating scandal that would end up being his legacy

-traded for domestic abuser while he was still under investigation

-handled the sexist actions of his staff by attempting to sweep it under the rug

-gets suspended and fired for cheating before throwing players and employees under the bus

Seriously what a piece of shit, what else am I missing?

The report also alludes to other things about "how employees are treated" and "Dealings with the press" that I'm not sure are fully captured by the list you gave. There's probably some other stuff we don't know about. 

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6 hours ago, bmags said:

Also bravo for Passan not just parroting the harshness I’d the penalty (cough Rosenthal cough)

Over the past couple of years, Passan has surpassed Rosenthal IMO. Passan is a great reporter and stays out of trouble, while Rosenthal has been parroting what the league wants people to think (as you noted) and has made some uncomfortable statements regarding players with domestic abuse histories (most notably Addison Russell)

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