I’m clearly ready for baseball season to start. Spring Training will be here next week and we will start getting exhibition games, baseball doesn’t like that description, the following week. A lot of bad has been discussed this winter but the spring brings renewal. In this week’s Saturday Reader, I have three stories about the negative news of the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal but finish with an uplifting piece about what is good about baseball. Enjoy!
Here is this week’s Saturday Reader…
We were told that the Astros’ cheating scandal was implemented by players and one coach, former Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora. In a piece for the Wall Street Journal, Jared Diamond exposed a different version of the story in which an Excel-based application named “Codebreaker” created by a front office intern put the wheels in motion. Former Astros GM Jeff Luhnow, who previously denied having any knowledge of the scandal, was found by MLB’s investigation to likely be lying. In fact, an email sent to Luhnow referenced “our dark arts, sign-stealing department.”
Former Houston Astros manager AJ Hinch spoke with Sports Illustrated writer Tom Verducci about the sign-stealing scandal for which he was recently suspended and fired. A video of the interview was aired on MLB Network and Verducci wrote an interesting piece about it for SI.
The Houston Astros cheating scandal was not only hard on those found to be cheating. Jeff Luhnow apparently lied to MLB investigators, AJ Hinch had a second managing job end abruptly, but most of all Astros fans found out that they cheered for a phony team. Marc Carig wrote a piece for The Athletic about a fan who spent hours researching the cheating and came away convinced that the team he loved cheated.
Roger Kahn, the author of The Boy’s of Summer, died on Thursday. Joe Posnanski wrote a piece for The Athletic explaining the importance of that book to him. Posnanski is one of the best writers I have ever read, and reading about the book that helped inspire him to be a writer is a treat.
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