Arthur: In Astros report, devil is in the details

From SABR member Rob Arthur at Baseball Prospectus on January 16, 2020:

On Monday we learned that the punishment for the Houston Astros’ illegal sign-stealing scheme would be harsh. Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich reported that the league was taking draft picks from the Astros, suspending manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow, and fining the team a paltry $5 million. Separately, Astros owner Jim Crane moved quickly to dismiss the pair. Further discipline will likely follow for another one of the architects of the trash can banging, former Red Sox manager Alex Cora, who the team parted ways with Tuesday.

Lost in the dramatic and decisive punishments was significant news uncovered in MLB’s investigation. Manfred’s letter contained a detailed map of when and how the Astros stole signs illegally and the extent was much greater than we knew. In the wake of these revelations, it’s possible to spot new ways the Astros cheated and some occasions when their sign-stealing didn’t work as well as they planned.

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Originally published: January 17, 2020. Last Updated: January 17, 2020.