Tue, Jan 21, 2020

The Houston Astros and Boston Red Sox are both currently embroiled in sign-stealing scandals. The allegations against the Astros date to their 2017 World Series championship season and the Red Sox’s allegations are from their 2018 World Series championship season. Both Fall Classic victories came against the Los Angeles Dodgers

Reigning National League MVP and Dodgers star Cody Bellinger shared his thoughts on the sign-stealing scandals and the league’s subsequent investigations recently in an interview with ESPN. Bellinger, shortly before the league handed down punishments to the Astros on Monday, said the Dodgers “did it the right way.”

“Honestly, we’re curious to see what happens,” Bellinger told ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez. “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 [MLB Commissioner Rob] Manfred wants to do. We’ll see.”

Bellinger’s frustration is warranted, and it’s impossible to know just how much electronic sign-stealing played a role in either World Series. In 2017, the Astros defeated the Dodgers in seven games while the Red Sox won in five games in 2018. Last year, the Dodgers ended their 106-win season early in a shocking loss to the eventual World Series champion Washington Nationals in the NLDS.

MLB released a nine-page report detailing wrongdoing by the Astros, who used an illegal sign-stealing system during their 2017 title run. GM Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch were given one-year suspensions by the league and were subsequently fired by the Astros. Houston was also fined $5 million and lost draft picks in 2020 and 2021.

The Red Sox, meanwhile, allegedly used their video replay room to steal signs throughout the 2018 season, and then used the knowledge to inform baserunners who would rely the signs to hitters. The Astros are accused of using video monitors to rely the pitch signs to batters in real time in a system that included a center-field camera and the banging of a dugout trashcan.

Bellinger, 24, is hoping to get his club back to the World Series next year. He recently agreed to a deal for $11.5 million next season. The deal breaks Kris Bryant’s record of $10.85 million for first-year arbitration players. In his MVP season, Bellinger hit .305/.406/.629 with 47 home runs, 115 RBI and 15 stolen bases over 156 games to beat out Christian Yelich and Anthony Rendon for the award. The Dodgers have won seven consecutive NL West division titles, but have been without a World Series title for 32 years.

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