Red Sox

Report: MLB gave players immunity in exchange for testimonies in sign-stealing scandal

Report: MLB gave players immunity in exchange for testimonies in sign-stealing scandal

While ex-Houston Astros manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow were slapped with year-long suspensions and subsequently fired for their roles in the team's sign-stealing scandal, players involved were completely exonerated.

Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred explained his decision not to penalize the players by calling it “difficult and impractical." But according to The Wall Street Journal, the league and the MLB Players Association agreed to a deal that granted immunity to players in exchange for honest testimony.

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via WSJ:

But there is a simpler explanation for why no players were penalized: The league and the MLB Players Association struck an agreement early in the process that granted immunity in exchange for honest testimony, according to several people familiar with the matter.

The league was quick to make such an offer, these people said, in part because it did not believe it would win subsequent grievances with any players it attempted to discipline ...

The deal is a sign of MLB’s desire for a speedy and conflict-free investigation, the continuing power of the baseball players’ union and the fragile state of the sport’s labor relations. The promise of amnesty allowed the league to interview 23 current and former Astros players during the two-month investigation.

The investigation resulted in the aforementioned suspensions as well as the Astros being fined $5 million and losing their first and second-round draft picks for the 2020 and 2021 seasons.

Manager Alex Cora mutually agreed to part ways with the Boston Red Sox shortly thereafter, and former Astros player Carlos Beltran stepped down from his new role as New York Mets manager. Cora had been the Astros bench coach and Beltran an Astros player in  2017 and both were mentioned prominently in MLB's report on the scheme.

MLB is in the middle of a separate sign-stealing investigation involving the 2018 Red Sox. Cora is expected to be handed a suspension as long -- if not longer -- than Hinch and Luhnow's once the investigation concludes.

Here's when to expect MLB's ruling in Red Sox sign-stealing investigation

Here's when to expect MLB's ruling in Red Sox sign-stealing investigation

It looks like the Boston Red Sox will have to wait even longer to hear the results of MLB's ongoing investigation into the 2018 team's alleged sign-stealing.

Commissioner Rob Manfred stated back on Feb. 16 he expected the investigation to conclude by the end of this week. On Tuesday, though, Jon Heyman of MLB Network reported an announcement likely won't be made until early March.


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Of course, that means a ruling will come only a couple of days later than anticipated, but there's no doubt Sox fans are growing frustrated with the constant delays.

MLBPA executive director Tony Clark said Tuesday the league has concluded its interviews for the investigation.

“As of right now, we understand that the interviews that they were going to have and did have as well as the information they were gathering from beyond the player interviews has all happened,” Clark said, per The Boston Globe. “Now we’re just waiting for the decision itself.”

Multiple Red Sox players claim the 2018 team did nothing wrong and that there shouldn't be a punishment coming their way. If MLB does hand down punishments, the expectation is that they won't be severe.

Red Sox prospect quarantined amid coronavirus concerns

Red Sox prospect quarantined amid coronavirus concerns

The Boston Red Sox are playing it safe with one of their prospects during spring training. Not because of anything injury-related, but because of the coronavirus.

Taiwanese right-hander Chih-Jung Liu is being quarantined in a hotel room, as a team spokesman said the organization is using “an overabundance of caution" to guard against the virus, per The Boston Globe.

Liu, who arrived to the United States for his first spring training after being signed in October, provided an update on his status on his Facebook page. According to The Globe, the 20-year-old says he is "being delivered three meals a day, doing some weight training, and going for an occasional run." He's also spending his time online “watching information about the team” and reading.

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Taiwan currently has 31 confirmed cases of coronavirus to the United States' 57, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Liu flew from Taiwan to San Francisco prior to joining the Red Sox in Fort Myers, Fla. for spring training.

Liu expects to come out of quarantine and finally join his teammates on Saturday.