September 5, 2017

MLB: Red Sox Used Apple Watches To Illicitly Steal Signs Against Yankees

(Boston Herald website)

(New York Post website)

Boston Red Sox Used Apple Watches to Steal Signs Against Yankees
Michael S. Schmidtsept, New York Times:
For decades, spying on another team has been as much a part of the gamesmanship of baseball as brushback pitches and hard slides. The Red Sox have apparently added a modern — and illicit — twist: They used an Apple Watch to gain an advantage against the Yankees and other teams.

Investigators for Major League Baseball have determined that the Boston Red Sox, who are in first place in the American League East and likely headed to the playoffs, executed a scheme to illicitly steal hand signals from opponents' catchers in games against the second-place Yankees and other teams, according to several people briefed on the matter.

The baseball inquiry began about two weeks ago, after the Yankees' general manager, Brian Cashman, filed a detailed complaint with the commissioner's office that included video the Yankees shot of the Red Sox dugout during a three-game series in Boston last month [August 18-20].

The Yankees, who had long been suspicious of the Red Sox stealing catchers' signs in Fenway Park, contended the video showed a member of the Red Sox training staff looking at his Apple Watch in the dugout and then relaying a message to players, who may have then been able to use the information to know the type of pitch that was going to be thrown, according to the people familiar with the case.

Baseball investigators corroborated the Yankees' claims based on video the commissioner's office uses for instant replay and broadcasts, the people said. The commissioner's office then confronted the Red Sox, who admitted that their trainers had received signals from video replay personnel and then relayed that information to some players — an operation that had been in place for at least several weeks.

The Red Sox responded in kind on Tuesday, filing a complaint against the Yankees, claiming that the team uses a camera from its television network, YES, exclusively to steal signs during games.

It is unclear what penalties, if any, Commissioner Rob Manfred will issue against the Red Sox and whether he will order a more expansive investigation to determine the extent of the Red Sox’ sign-stealing system. It is also unclear how he will proceed with the countercomplaint. ...

As part of the inquiry, baseball investigators have interviewed the Red Sox team trainers and outfielder Chris Young, a former Yankees player. The Red Sox told league investigators that the team's manager, John Farrell, general manager, Dave Dombrowski, and other front-office officials were not aware of the sign-stealing operation, the people said.

In the first game of the series in question [August 18], the first time the Red Sox got a runner on second was Xander Bogaerts, in the second inning. Rafael Devers promptly hit a home run, giving the Red Sox a 2-0 lead. The Red Sox went 5 for 8 in the first game when they had a man on second.

Their success when they had a runner on second in the other two games was mixed: 1 for 6 in the second game [August 19]; and 3 for 10 in the third game [August 20]. ...
Bob Nightengale, USAToday:
One of baseball's oldest rivalries is embroiled in a most 21st-century controversy, as Major League Baseball prepares to discipline the Boston Red Sox for using an Apple Watch to steal signs from their longtime enemies, the New York Yankees.

A baseball official with direct knowledge of the investigation confirmed that MLB is aware of the allegations - which also includes the unauthorized use of cellular phones - and will prepare discipline against the Red Sox.

The official noted that the practice also occurred against other teams, and involved at least four Red Sox players and members of the training staff. ...

While the report cited "other teams" from which the Red Sox stole signs, it primarily occurred against the Yankees.

1 comment:

allan said... news services:

Red Sox manager John Farrell, whose team is hosting Toronto, said that Boston is "aware of the rule (that) electronic devices are not to be used in the dugout." When asked to comment further, he said it's "a league matter."

Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner, who is in Baltimore for a game against the Orioles, said of the sign stealing: "It was something we expected was going on."