The probe into the Astros and the sign-stealing accusations have just begun and may go on all winter, and beyond. Have they already been found guilty?
The MLB commissioner, Rob Manfred, has indicated that the punishment levied on the Astros could be severe, depending on the outcome of the alleged cheating investigation. What could the possible ramifications be and are we feeling it already?
Everything has been discussed, from hefty fines to losing draft picks and international money, and/or handing down suspensions to personnel found to be involved. How would this affect the Astros Minor League system and the future of this team? Who would be affected by any suspensions imposed on them? The front office? Managers and/or coaches? Players???
"Manfred said. “The general warning that I issued to the clubs, I stand by. It certainly could be all those things. But my authority under the major league constitution would be broader than those things, as well.” via Ryan Gaydos of FoxNews"
I closely monitor social media and anything Astros related, I know what you, as fans, are saying. “They haven’t proved anything yet.” “What about all of the other teams that were doing the same thing?” I hear you. I get it.
But Major League Baseball is squarely focused on the Astros and nobody else right now. As much as I hate to say it, Houston is going to end up being the scapegoat in all of this and they’re the ones who are going to be made the example going forward.
"“I’m not going to speculate on whether other people are going to be involved. We’ll deal with that if it happens. I have no reason to believe that it extends beyond the Astros at this point in time.” said Rob Manfred. via Justin Tasch of the New York Post"
My concern is how this could influence the Astros’ offseason. Will possible free agents think twice before considering coming to Houston? I worry about the farm system and its future prospects, or rather the lack thereof. I fret the coherence of the organization, the coaching staff, and the players may be in jeopardy.