The Houston Astros spoke on Thursday about their role in cheating by using electronic devices to steal signs during their 2017 championship season.
Astros owner Jim Crane, Astros manager Dusty Baker, Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve spoke in a press conference, and Carlos Correa, Justin Verlander and Josh Reddick commented to a group of reporters to address the sport’s biggest issue that hovers around the club. Even ex-Astro Gerrit Cole commented about the Astros as a Yankee.
Out of all the people that sounded emphatic and apologetic, it was Baker, and he didn’t manage the Astros during that championship season or even last season. He recently got hired to lead his players through this crisis for this season. The rest seemed indifferent and annoyed just talking about it.
It takes a special kind of arrogance for anyone to be bothered to answer a question, but the Astros accomplished just that in their horrible attempt of mea culpa.
Crane claimed the sign-signals did not impact the Astros’ accomplishments, which was translated to his team did nothing wrong and they have nothing to apologize for. He also claimed he shouldn’t be held accountable. He did all he could to skate away from those questions by not giving an answer. Meanwhile, Bregman and Altuve showed zero emotion and regret in their attempt to apologize, which seemed forced. Verlander offered nothing, and Reddick didn’t think it was that big of a deal for him to apologize to the opposing players, not to mention he didn’t think the Astros’ championship was tainted. Cole said he had nothing to apologize for.
Correa admitted his team cheated by saying the sign-signals gave the Astros an advantage. He came out well along with Baker.
Crane and the Astros hired a public relations firm to help them navigate out of this mess and move forward, and apparently, this was the best they could do. Talk about waste of resources. A waste of everyone’s time.
Shame on them for doing such a bungling job. They made it worse.
No one should be surprised with Crane’s act. He’s an owner who doesn’t know better other than making profits. Ethics be damned as long as he is winning. It isn’t surprising he couldn’t handle a moment like this. But then again, this is the same owner who tried to smear Sports Illustrated’s Stephanie Apstein after she called out then-Astros assistant general manager Brandon Taubman for screaming at her and several female sportswriters on why the Astros acquired Roberto Osuna in an attempt to mansplain them despite the fact he was involved in a domestic violence dispute. It took until Major League Baseball to tell him to apologize to Apstein and fire Taubman, which is such an indictment on the Astros owner.
Bregman and Altuve tried to say the right things, but there was no emotion. Reading off a script does not convince others that they are sorry other than they are sorry they got caught. For them to treat this like a chore shows they are not really remorseful.
Reddick and Cole came out so out-of-touch, and Verlander lacked courage to call out the team he is being employed about cheating.
I didn’t expect much from these perpetrators. Shame on anyone if he or she did.
Maybe apologizing wouldn’t make it any better since the Astros would still have the Commissioner’s Trophy and keep their World Series share, but at least, it would help them move forward and cleanse their sins. If nothing else, they would show they cared, even if they don’t mean it. They made it worse by being brunt of jokes and criticism from their peers, baseball fans and the media.
Crane all but double-down by saying stealing sign signals did not have much impact in the games his team played. Think about that. Reddick’s comments came out as taunting by saying the Astros’ championship is not tainted. Cole appeared as an immature jerk.
The Astros know this won’t go away this season. When they attend games as visitors, they will hear it in places such as Oakland, Anaheim, New York (they play the Mets and Yankees this year), Chicago, Arlington, St. Petersburg, Toronto, Boston (irony here since the Red Sox allegedly used electronic sign-signals), Cleveland and Washington, Oh, and look for some of their players to get a taste of chin music from pitchers.
They could have helped themselves with the public by just admitting it and moving on. At least, they wouldn’t have to hear from criticism after that useless one-day apology tour.
By doubling-down, they made it easy to like them even less.