Major League Baseball has taken a major hit since the news broke that the Houston Astros were involved in a cheating scandal focus around stealing signs. After news broke, it sent shockwaves throughout Major League Baseball, and as a result, three managers lost their jobs in a week’s time, including Astros’ general manager. Former Houston Astros’ and now A’s pitcher Mike Fiers was the whistleblower as he told The Athletic of the scheme back in November.
“I don’t know if we really had any hard proof, but I’m sure there was (some evidence of other teams’ conduct),” Fiers told The Athletic. “Going into the playoffs, we had veterans like Brian McCann — we went straight to multiple signs (with our pitchers). We weren’t going to mess around. We were sure there were teams out there that were trying certain things to get an edge and win ballgames. I wouldn’t say there was hard evidence. But it’s hard to catch teams at home. There are so many things you can use to win at home.”
Over the last couple of months since the news broke, numerous members other the baseball community have spoken on the cheating scandal, including Baseball Commissioner Ron Manfred earlier this week.
“Mike Fiers, in my view, did the industry a service,” Manfred said during a sit-down with ESPN. “He opened the door here. Without that opening of the door, we would not have been able to conduct the effective investment that we did. We would not have been able to impose the disciplines that were imposed. We would not have been able to probably take the prophylactic measures that we’re gonna take with respect to 2020, and it’s important – painful, but important – that we clean all that up.”
Mark Cuban, and Magic Johnson, Weigh in on the Cheating Scandal
On Tuesday morning, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban tweeted out that “Baseball is a mess right now and they have zero vision to see them out of it. I’m thankful they didn’t let me buy a team.”
Mark Cuban and now Houston Astros owner Jim Crane attempted to buy the Texas Rangers in 2010 with a bid of $581.2 million, but they would lose to the group led by Chuck Greenburg and Nolan Ryan according to the Dallas Morning News. After the Rangers were up for public auction in a Fort Worth bankruptcy court due to former Rangers owner Tom Hicks owed creditors money.
“We thought we were very close,” Cuban said. “We thought we had it until Major League Baseball intervened and kind of put the kibosh on us and started playing games in court.”
Los Angeles Dodgers minority owner Magic Johnson was recently asked his thoughts on an event during NBA All-Star weekend.
“It’s hard when being an athlete, I just want a level playing field. So when I played against the Bulls, the same rules Michael Jordan has, the same I’m gonna have. And I think for the Dodgers it’s the same thing, I just want a level playing field,” Johnson said via Heavy’s Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson. “We didn’t get that. So I was really disappointed, not just because I am an owner, I was disappointed for my players. Everything needed to be equal, and it wasn’t. And we feel that’s the reason they won the World Series.”
Johnson had heard many of the Astros apologies and like most, didn’t feel like they were sincere or enough.
“I’m never going to be satisfied with all the excuses, what they say, I’m never going to happy, never going to be satisfied, especially because I used to play competitive sports. And again, we just want the same rules as the other team. When you cheat it sends a bad message, also, to the kids. This was bad all the way around. I don’t know what can happen to make us feel better. I don’t think anything, other than winning the World Series,” Johnson added.