A recent report released by The Wall Street Journal revealed that it was a Houston Astros intern who initially introduced the team's sign-stealing system to then-general manager Jeff Luhnow in 2016. In a PowerPoint presentation, the intern showed Luhnow an Excel-based application called "Codebreaker," which was developed by the front office with an algorithm that could decode opposing catchers' signs. This was the genesis of the team's sign-stealing scandal that cost both Luhnow and manager AJ Hinch their jobs.
The new information counters MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred’s official report which stated that the Astros’ front office did not have a part in the cheating scandal, and at least one player wants answers. Nationals pitcher Sean Doolittle is calling for transparency and accountability from MLB and those involved in the scandal. Doolittle took to Twitter to express his frustration.
“The integrity of the game is at stake and players and fans deserve some answers,” Doolittle said in his first of several tweets.
Players around the league are pissed. But we’re looking forward to hearing more from parties involved in spring training. We want an apology, some transparency and accountability - real answers from people taking real responsibility for letting down the game of baseball.— Obi-Sean Kenobi Doolittle (@whatwouldDOOdo) February 8, 2020
According to the Journal, a letter Manfred sent to Luhnow on Jan. 2 outlined the findings. “Codebreaker” was used in real-time by the video room staff and the team’s baseball ops, and that information was shared with hitters. Additionally, the Journal is reporting that “Codebreaker” was used not only at home, but on the road.
Doolittle is calling for an apology from not only the MLB but from players and those who were involved in the cheating scandal.
“We want an apology, some transparency and accountability - real answers from people taking real responsibility for letting down the game of baseball,” he said.
In another tweet, he said: “Past outcomes are being second guessed and even future games will be cast in doubt.”
We recognize how important solidarity among players is. It’s our strongest asset. And we have already begun working on proposals to make sure a cheating scandal like this could never happen again. But we need answers so we can move on as a group, and as a sport.— Obi-Sean Kenobi Doolittle (@whatwouldDOOdo) February 8, 2020
Major League Baseball’s January report on the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal stated that the effort was “entirely player-driven.” The report stated that besides former Astros bench coach Alex Cora, no non-player staff had been involved.
In his first public comments since being fired, Hinch took responsbility for his part, saying he didn't "initiate or endorse it" but had a responsiblity to end it as the manager. During MLB’s probe, Luhnow denied having any knowledge of the Astros’ misconduct.
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