As a New York Yankees fan who lives in Los Angeles, Lakers star LeBron James has plenty of reason to be upset with the Houston Astros. Thanks to the very public cheating scandal, an argument can easily be made that they cost the Yankees or Dodgers out of a World Series title. One thing which appears to have made the whole situation worse is the lackluster punishment that MLB commissioner Rob Manfred gave the Astros. No players were punished, which many around the league have had an issue with.
Things only got worse for Manfred when he downplayed the significance of potentially stripping the Astros of their World Series title. LeBron joined the fray of people who are not happy with how Manfred has handled the whole situation.
The fact that Houston has been able to keep their title throughout all of this is pretty surprising. They were hit with just a fine and a few suspensions.
MLB Players Aren’t Happy With Manfred
There are many teams that were negatively impacted by the Astros’ scandal and are clearly not happy with Manfred dismissing the World Series trophy as a “piece of metal.”
“It bothered me, man. I hated it. It made him sound really out of touch,” said reliever Sean Doolittle of the Washington Nationals, per Fox News. “That’s the holy grail of our sport. That’s what we show up for in the beginning of February, thinking about and working towards.”
Not only are people upset about Manfred’s comments, but they’re also upset about the lack of punishment the commissioner gave the Astros.
“I’m sure a lot of people were mad,” Angels star Mike Trout said. “They think the punishment should be more or something.”
The Dodgers probably have more reason to be mad than anyone as they were incredibly close to beating Houston in the 2017 World Series.
“For him to devalue it the way he did yesterday just tells me how out of touch he is with the players in this game. At this point, the only thing devaluing that trophy is that it says ‘commissioner’ on it,” said Dodgers’ Justin Turner, per Fox News.
Los Angeles isn’t asking for the trophy, they just don’t think the Astros should have a right to keep it.
“It’s pretty obvious what everyone thinks should happen. I mean, no one in this clubhouse or in this room is asking for a trophy to be handed us, by any means. … But at the same time, we understand how difficult it is to win a World Series. It’s hard. It’s really hard. And it’s something that you have to earn,” Turner said. “It’s pretty evident to me that it wasn’t earned and it’s not something that a banner should be hung in their stadium (or) a trophy should be put up wherever their trophies go.”
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Rob Manfred Apologizes
Understanding the bad judgment call he made, Manfred has apologized over his comments, as Scott Bair of NBC Sports revealed.
This is a defining moment for the MLB commissioner and if he continues to mishandle it in the eyes of players, it could be a black mark on his record. He’s got quite a bit of damage control to do in order to regain the trust of the players and teams, it appears.