The Yankees Letter was released Tuesday, paving a path of more understanding of illegal sign stealing in Major League Baseball.
The big question of all of the 2015-2018 Major League Baseball cheating scandals remains — did the cheating really benefit anyone? I think we can see across the board that for the most part, no, the cheating was rarely effective and on some occasions even had the opposite effect.
So now to the real meat of the matter today, the “Yankees Letter” was released and proved the Houston Astros were not the first or last team to actively cheat in real time and most importantly MLB knew.
The Letter shows the New York Yankees cheated in both 2015 and 2016, and as Astros fans will remember that includes the Yankees cheating during the 2015 Wild Card loss to the Astros. At the dawning of the Astros’ era, the 3-0 shutout of the Yankees in Yankee Stadium was led by the lights out start of Dallas Keuchel.
Keuchel and Astros pitchers allowed only five base runners all game, which again begs the question does the cheating even make a difference? Not in that game, talent won the day.
The Astros of 2015 and on to the present were the more talented team, which is why they won in Yankee Stadium that day, the World Series in Dodger Stadium in 2017 and reached the World Series in 2019 and 2021. Talent wins.
What does matter, however, is the response of MLB and national media, and how they treated the Astros. Now, I say we all need to drop it and with the Astros losing a manager, a general manager and four draft picks, and $5,000,000, compared to a $100,000 fine for the Yankees, l would think some correction is needed.
If MLB knew cheating was league wide, which they did, the Astros being the scapegoat and taking the punishment for all teams is just not fair, and I would say at the least the draft picks need to be restored.
Some media commentators of course from New England have said the cheating is not the same, but there is no real argument for that. If the Yankees were cheating for 200 or more games is less than the Astros’ 82 games, then I’m not sure how you measure that as equal.
Either way, we need to move on. The Yankees Letter should stop all the fan haters booing Jose Altuve and other Astros at different parks, but it won’t. It should say to them, look in the mirror, but that is not going to happen.
Yankees’ general manager Brian Cashman’s statement about the Astros being the reason the Yankees haven’t won the World Series is even more absurd than it was when he said it and perhaps he should be fired too and get the Jeff Luhnow treatment.
Either way, media talking heads, fans and the League as a whole need to drop the Astros hate train, and we all need to move on, instead of rehashing history over and over. We all would agree that if the Astros were the only team to do it it would be worthy of such disdain, but as Chris Sale referenced this year and as the Yankees Letter states, the Astros weren’t the only team doing it.
Move on everyone.