Real quick here. As I was perusing the internets looking for more stories regarding the Astros sign stealing scandal, I came across the old story of the Astros staff member getting caught taking video of the Red Sox and Indians' dugouts in the 2018 post season. Here's the story, via Yahoo. Ironically enough enough it's the same article that first brought light to the garbage can banging system.
The TL/DR is this: In 2018, the Astros swept the Indians in the ALDS but the Astros had an 'off the books' employee filming the Indians dugout with a cell phone. The Indians then warned the Red Sox about this guy and the Red Sox set up an ipso facto sting operation to catch him in the act in the ALCS. The Red Sox then told MLB about him, MLB investigated, and nothing ever really came of it. At least nothing more than conjecture from a bunch of internet assholes like myself. The whole thing just stunk to high heavens. But their excuse to why they had this McLaughlin cat filming the dugout like this...
Jeff Luhnow says that this was done because they were concerned Cleveland, and then Boston, was cheating, and they wanted to try to stop them. MLB appears to have accepted that, which Passan says has resulted in complaints from the rest of the teams.
We're not cheating, YOU'RE cheating - Houston Astros
I hate adding gifs to blogs like this, but this gif is such a perfect response for this blog it's obligatory: What. The. Fuck. It's MIND BOGGLING that MLB (allegedly) accepted that as a worthy excuse for McLaughlin piping his cell phone into dugouts. This quote has not and is not getting the attention it should be. AWFUL look for MLB. I'm not sure how MLB conducts their internal investigations, but you'd have to guess that Commissioner Rob Manfred and EVP Joe Torre are calling a lot of the shots. If that's the case, this is a BAD look for both of them.
The more this story unfolds, the worse those two (among others) are going to look, especially now that there is mountains of evidence piling against the Astros and their filthy ways. Just some food for thought. MLB might have been able to put the kibosh on this whole thing just after the Astros won a World Series and before they appeared in another. Brutal look all the way around. This whole thing keeps getting bigger and bigger. Love me a good conspiracy.