Written by Sean Clark
The Houston Astros’ sign-stealing scandal has rocked the baseball world. The Astros’ 2017 championship has a metaphorical asterisk and many players around MLB are furious at the Astros organization for cheating. They are currently the biggest villains in sports.
The organization, management and executives were punished for stealing pitch signs during the 2017 season, but the players that directly benefitted from this scheme were granted immunity for honest testimony by MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred during the investigation. This has further angered players and the speculation is that pitchers are now going to intentionally throw at the Astros’ players. While the anger is understandable, the pitchers should not do that.
As children, most of us either had siblings or went to schools where we played with other kids. Typically when conflicts occurred, the altercations tended to get physical and kids would be punished by their parents or by faculty, especially when it happened at school.
However, in many situations, the kid who retaliated is the one punished instead of the one who started the fight. Sometimes, the one who retaliates lands a hit that causes more damage.
The Astros are the ones who started the fight, but the pitchers who retaliate will land a more physical blow and will be punished. Manfred has already stated his intention of punishing pitchers who intentionally throw at the Astros by suspension.
Pitchers, no matter how frustrated they may be, should not get themselves into trouble for the sake of revenge. It will not only negatively impact the team, but their paychecks and season momentum will take a hit as well. It is simply not worth it.
Also, intentionally throwing a baseball that weighs around 5 ounces with a 9-inch circumference, around 90 mph at a person is highly dangerous and can lead to serious injury. It is painful getting hit by a pitch no matter where the ball lands.
Giancarlo Stanton, a former Miami Marlins outfielder, needed six to eight weeks to recover when he was drilled in the face Sept. 11, 2014, by then-Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Mike Fiers, who ironically is the one that was the whistleblower for the Astros’ scandal. Former Baltimore Orioles center fielder Adam Jones broke his wrist after being hit by a 96-mph fastball.
If pitchers want to take revenge on the Astros, there are two better ways to do so: beat them and don’t shake their hands. The Astros will be motivated this season to prove to everyone that they can win without cheating to steal signs.
Pitchers will be motivated to show the Astros they only won due to having an unfair advantage. The best revenge will be for the pitchers to win those battles.
There are ways to get revenge on the Astros for cheating. Just don’t do it in a way that can seriously injure other people.