Major League Baseball has wrapped up its investigation into alleged sign-stealing by the Houston Astros and concluded that they indeed cheated. How much of that cheating catapulted them to a World Series championship fans and followers of the sport may never fully understand, but Commissioner Rob Manfred has handed down this punishment:
- A one-year suspension for general manager Jeff Luhnow.
- A one-year suspension for manager A.J. Hinch.
- The forfeitures of first- and second-round draft picks in both 2020 and ’21.
- A fine of $5 million, the maximum allowed under MLB’s constitution.
- The placement of former Astros assistant GM Brandon Taubman on baseball’s ineligible list.
While the suspensions of Luhnow and Hinch are severe it’s important to understand both will be eligible to return just after the World Series ends this season. So, they won’t actually miss the off-season, which is incredibly important for both if they find employment with another organization as team owner Jim Crane has now fired both.
Jim Crane says he fired both Luhnow and Hinch for failing tonlive up to their “responsibilities.”
“Neither one of them started this, but neither one did anything about it.”
— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) January 13, 2020
However, the loss of first- and second-round draft picks in 2020 and ’21 are the real death penalty here. First-round picks themselves generally make the majors in two to four years at a nearly 75% rate. The Astros losing two potential major league contributors just as they’ll need to bring in reinforcements for likely player losses due to free agency or associated arbitration costs for specific players is a big deal.
These punishments could very likely accelerate the natural fall of this current Astros team and sustainable success going forward.
With the Astros penalties finally out and that investigation over it’s being reported the Commissioner and MLB is now preparing to hand a harsh punishment to Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora for his role in the Astros’ cheating scandal.
No players were disciplined by Major League Baseball in the Astros’ investigation. While Mets manager Carlos Beltran was part of it, he was a player at the time and thus was not suspended.
Discipline for Red Sox manager Alex Cora is coming. It is going to be harsh, per sources.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 13, 2020
However, the Boston Red Sox took the proactive step of ‘mutually’ parting ways with Cora before MLB hands down punishment – rumored to be a multi-year suspension.