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Front Page: Have the Twins Been Getting Beaten by Cheaters?


Nick Nelson
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Well, when you lose 20 playoff games in a row (which is impossible in baseball) to a team that has been implicated in this mess by former players (the Yankees), I think it’s clear how the Twins were “cheated out of something.”

Also, the Yankees beat the Twins for home field last year by 2 games, including losing a series at home to the Yankees. You don’t think illegally using video analytics to steal signs for the entire season could’ve changed that outcome?

It’s not bad enough to have the umps calling doubles 3 feet inside of the line foul....you also have to beat the most potent offense in the game when they know what pitch is coming.

I’m not sure how it would work, but I’m pissed if I’m a pitcher like Berrios or Odorizzi. I’m going to players association and elsewhere to see if there is any sort of grievance I can file against the alleged teams or MLB. These guys just negotiated contracts. Playoff victory’s vs playoff losses to the Yankees on their record could cause a difference of millions.

And I don't get a union that will tolerate this. Beltran is guilty and gets nothing because the players union will resist punishment? What a crock. Hang Beltrans *** out to dry. Now he's a manager. Kick him out. No to him and others who are cheating for HOF either. This imo is as bad as Rose. Honestly, worse.

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Say goodbye to Marwin for 1/3 of the season, then....eeeks.

Love Marwin but would be fine with that, punishment should apply to all players and personnel that participated or were aware and looked the other way. I don’t feel MLB came down nearly hard enough, every team and player in the league should be scared ****less to attempt or continue this type of behavior.

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Crane also knew darn well what was going on too. What a farce. Reap millions with a WS and get a slap on the wrist.  An organization that turns a blind eye and Hinch gets to fall on the sword.

 

That's an assumption.  He very well could have.  He very well might not have known a damn thing.  

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How about suspend their franchise for a year? No schedule, no games. Nothing.

That would leave a lasting mark in the record books. Let the Players Union work out what happens as far as the current players go.

 

That doesn't only effect the players union though.  There are thousands of players and employees in the Houston franchise that had nothing to do with this.  You are effecting so many people doing something rash like that.  Not to mention, the league isn't going to hurt itself.  Doing something like this is a great way to push fans away from your sport/league.  Manfred and commissioner's office works for the league and the owners of the league, not the other way around.

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Let's say this is the tip of the iceberg, it turns out at least half the teams in mlb has been doing exactly what Houston did and it's been an open secret for years within clubhouses.

 

Are you more mad if you find out the Twins are one of the teams that did or that didn't do it?

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Let's say this is the tip of the iceberg, it turns out at least half the teams in mlb has been doing exactly what Houston did and it's been an open secret for years within clubhouses.

 

Are you more mad if you find out the Twins are one of the teams that did or that didn't do it?

More mad if the Twins were found to be one of the cheaters...although if they were doing it prior to 2019 it clearly didn’t pay off very well for them...

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Any mention of Marwin Gonzalez in the report? Marwin was among the Astros batters who knocked Darvish out of the second inning in both games 3 and 7 of the 2017 World Series, despite a largely ineffective postseason at the plate otherwise.

 

Good point. In my view, each and every one of the position players on those teams should be given an opportunity to go on record: tell the public if you participated, if you knew, or otherwise be singled out for your "no comment" thing. But they'll be let off the hook, by fans and owners and the union.

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Perhaps this is the perfect excuse to speed up the game. Make every hitter abide by the pitchers pace. Mark Buerhle wasn’t having his signs stolen as it couldn’t happen in the brief second it took him from sign to delivery

I appreciate the effort, but most pitchers aren't Buehrle. They are often happy to slow the game down, just like most batters. I don't want *any* players being able to set the pace of the game, that's the problem.

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The batters didn't need to look away.

They were using sounds (specifically banging on trash cans) to indicate the pitch to the hitter from the dugout.

I know there are one or two video clips floating around of banging on trash can lids. I’ve got to think there was more to it than that, or we would have dozens of clips. That particular sound would be pretty obvious and I think people would catch on pretty quickly. But you are right, it could still be an audio signal that hasn’t been revealed yet. Edited by Hosken Bombo Disco
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Any mention of Marwin Gonzalez in the report? Marwin was among the Astros batters who knocked Darvish out of the second inning in both games 3 and 7 of the 2017 World Series, despite a largely ineffective postseason at the plate otherwise.

 

I remember multiple articles about the possibility of Darvish tipping his pitches as an explanation for his poor World Series Performance that year. 

 

Obviously... it can no longer be assumed that by "tipping pitches" it was something that he was doing... like holding the ball or glove in a different location or something with this new can of worms opened up. 

 

Now, I realize that Darvish got paid decently by the Cubs the following year in free agency but in consideration of that World Series performance and in consideration of the latest news out of Houston.

 

Here's a question that no one has the answer to but...Potentially how much money do you think the Astros garbarge can banging cost Darvish in Free Agency that year? 

 

If he has a strong world series right before hitting FA... isn't it possible he gets a bigger contract? 

 

 

 

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You can cheat, get caught, and then keep your title? What? Like the 1997 Final Four Gophers, they should have their post-season appearances and any titles eliminated and struck from the record.

 

The 2017 Championship Astros banners (and possibly the 2018 Red Sox banners) should be taken down from the stadium and the titles should be vacated.

Sorry, but can’t disagree more.  I personally think that the NCAA system is ridiculous.  We all know that the Gophers went to the Final Four - we saw it.  Fine the team, take draft picks, hit them where they hurt....but take away the championship??  Do we really know that the Astros wouldn’t have won the Series?  Their team was STACKED; cheating or no.  Of course they cheated, but how do you connect causality?  If a great team has to cheat to get a title, if that’s your assumption, then how do surprise teams win, like the ‘06 Cards or the ‘10 Giants??

The ‘87 Twins won A LOT of home games on their way to a title; did they cheat....or did they ride two pitchers, a couple hot hitters and a bunch of HRs?  I think we all know the answer to that.

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Removing all electronics from the dugout (Ipads, phones, watches, etc.) and restricting clubhouse technology to tapes of previous games might be part of a solution. 

Another approach might be to enforce the 20 second pitch clock. Batters must remain in the box once their at bat begins. One foot out for a quick sign check and back in to hit. Every single MLB player grew up with those rules, including Nelson Cruz. High schools, colleges, and the minor leagues effectively eliminated posturing, stalling, glove adjustments, etc. decades ago. Not everyone pitches like Buehrle but taking thirty seconds not only slows down the game but creates time for individuals and teams to seek "outside" advantages.

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I remember multiple articles about the possibility of Darvish tipping his pitches as an explanation for his poor World Series Performance that year.

 

Obviously... it can no longer be assumed that by "tipping pitches" it was something that he was doing... like holding the ball or glove in a different location or something with this new can of worms opened up.

 

Now, I realize that Darvish got paid decently by the Cubs the following year in free agency but in consideration of that World Series performance and in consideration of the latest news out of Houston.

 

Here's a question that no one has the answer to but...Potentially how much money do you think the Astros garbarge can banging cost Darvish in Free Agency that year?

 

If he has a strong world series right before hitting FA... isn't it possible he gets a bigger contract?

Darvish is just one tiny example of the massive ripple effect cheating could cause. Darvish because of his poor WS performance lost a couple million, and his mojo for 1.5 years because of their cheating. Other players potentially lost out on additional arbitration money... Their bad performance against the Astros is added to the sample size, making them look worse. Other players potentially lost precious MLB service time and MLB salary because of bad performances against cheating teams... Cheating like this has massive effects.

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IMO how do you punish players without hard evidence of who it helped and who it didn't?  You cannot just suspend everyone, that turns into a witch hunt.  You can go by word of mouth of who said what, but that's a pretty slippery slope when it comes to punishment, especially as harsh punishment as some people in here are suggesting.

 

Are you going to suspend everyone who put on a jersey because they didn't report it and immediate put their own career and future in jeopardy?  It's easy to yell right now at the players from the sidelines.  

 

In the end the commish works for the owners.  He gave the biggest monetary fee allowed by the constitution and threw down a pretty big penalty for the first ever punishment of this kind.  While I agree, it's kinda sad to see the player's get off scott free.....I really don't know what would be appropriate, or what you could possibly do.

 

Correct... in Beltran's case though, he organized it. That's pretty clear. I have no problems hitting the players who were heavily involved... but that's the sticky point, which was what I was getting at... I'm not quite sure how you do it.

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I am delighted with baseball coming down on cheating, but the game seems to invite cheating.  PEDs were cheating and people still want to give offenders HOF status, stealing signs goes all the way back and includes the famous 1951 - Dodgers/Giants playoff where Sabr https://sabr.org/research/durocher-spymaster-how-much-did-giants-prosper-cheating-1951-finalist says the SHOT was aided by sign stealing.

 

Shoeless Joe and Pete Rose do not get my sympathy either, but we have to have some perspective when we ask if the Twins were beaten by cheaters.  Who knows where all the leads will take the investigations.   And hopefully Cora and others will suffer too.

But as a reminder that no team has a clean record here is one of my favorite Twins moments - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MzxrKO-yVV8  This is the bottom wrung on the cheater ladder.  Joe Niekro might have been a little less obvious.

 

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Correct... in Beltran's case though, he organized it. That's pretty clear. I have no problems hitting the players who were heavily involved... but that's the sticky point, which was what I was getting at... I'm not quite sure how you do it.

 

I mean....Beltran is the only player that could be named because he is no longer part of the player's union, so his name sticks out like a sore thumb.  There could have been a group of players who were instrumental in the whole thing but it won't come out because of just that.  It's a tough spot to be in for sure.

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What does stripping them of the title do?  Absolutely nothing.  It takes down a banner?  It puts a "vacated" in the record books?  Everyone knows who won, they watched the games.  The players played in the games.  It's just semantics at that point.  I hate how the NCAA vacates titles.  I feel it's much more a punishment for the fan base than it is to the players of the franchise themselves personally.
First and most importantly, stripping the title protects the integrity of the game. I refuse to acknowledge blatant cheaters as champions of anything and so should MLB. Yes, it takes down a banner that is ill-gotten gains. If you get caught cheating on a test in school do you think you should still get the test grade achieved while cheating? How about a criminal convicted of financial crimes? The criminal pays restitution to the victim. The victims in the Astros case are Dodgers fans and fans of baseball that want to protect the integrity of the sport. As it stands now, Hinch and Luhnow feel some pain. Not much though, I have already seen rumors Hinch will not have a problem finding a job after his suspension. The rich owner gets a $5 million fine, saves face by canning the manager and GM, keeps his team and title. The Astros didn't win. They cheated. We don't know what the results would have been with no cheating. What if you were playing poker, lose a hand for big $, then find your opponent was cheating? Would you think the cheater should keep your money? I am stumped why anyone thinks the Astros should keep their title now that we have facts and an admission of guilt. This seems like basic grade school logic to me. Astros fans are not getting punished, they have to take the hit for supporting cheaters and are collateral damage.
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First and most importantly, stripping the title protects the integrity of the game. I refuse to acknowledge blatant cheaters as champions of anything and so should MLB. Yes, it takes down a banner that is ill-gotten gains. If you get caught cheating on a test in school do you think you should still get the test grade achieved while cheating? How about a criminal convicted of financial crimes? The criminal pays restitution to the victim. The victims in the Astros case are Dodgers fans and fans of baseball that want to protect the integrity of the sport. As it stands now, Hinch and Luhnow feel some pain. Not much though, I have already seen rumors Hinch will not have a problem finding a job after his suspension. The rich owner gets a $5 million fine, saves face by canning the manager and GM, keeps his team and title. The Astros didn't win. They cheated. We don't know what the results would have been with no cheating. What if you were playing poker, lose a hand for big $, then find your opponent was cheating? Would you think the cheater should keep your money? I am stumped why anyone thinks the Astros should keep their title now that we have facts and an admission of guilt. This seems like basic grade school logic to me. Astros fans are not getting punished, they have to take the hit for supporting cheaters and are collateral damage.

 

We will just have to agree to disagree.  Taking down banners IMO does nothing.  It puts a black mark on the game and provides zero punishment to the players who were actively involved.

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I think all the fans that attended Astros home games are also complicit and they should ban all attendance for one year. C'mon, it's a game. Getting away with bending/breaking the rules goes as far back as competition was invented.

 

Maybe each team should have a secured network of communication tech so they can all communicate with each other. This is the 21st century after all.

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How about an easy solution to this?  There are no electronic or video devices allowed in the dugout, bullpen, or clubhouse during a game, other than the phone from the bullpen to the dugout.  There is no "instant replay feed" in the dugout or somewhere where someone can communicate with those in the dugout or on the field.  A manager wants to challenge?  Make that decision based on what you saw in real time from the dugout or what your players are telling you from the field. 

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Good point. In my view, each and every one of the position players on those teams should be given an opportunity to go on record: tell the public if you participated, if you knew, or otherwise be singled out for your "no comment" thing. But they'll be let off the hook, by fans and owners and the union.

That feels a lot like the witch hunt mentioned earlier. 

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Darvish is just one tiny example of the massive ripple effect cheating could cause. Darvish because of his poor WS performance lost a couple million, and his mojo for 1.5 years because of their cheating. Other players potentially lost out on additional arbitration money... Their bad performance against the Astros is added to the sample size, making them look worse. Other players potentially lost precious MLB service time and MLB salary because of bad performances against cheating teams... Cheating like this has massive effects.

You're right, and you forgot to mention that it's not just the guys who got negatively affected. Marwin Gonzalez, for example, had a great year in 2017 and probably made a few million extra in free agency thanks to the Astros WS victory. Some guys sure did lose $$$ thanks to the Astros, but a select handful of guys made more. Very, very unfair.

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