MLB sign stealing: History of allegations before Astros, Red Sox scandal


Before there was Mike Fiers there were whistleblowers named Al Worthington, Bob Shaw and Jay Hook—all of them pitchers. Before there was a trash can there were curtains, buzzers, weathervanes, peach nectar cans, scorecards and mascots.

Throughout baseball history players have stolen signs through illicit means and found creative ways to signal them to hitters. It only took 120 years for someone to actually do something about it.

After a three-month investigation into sign stealing by the 2017-18 Houston Astros, commissioner Rob Manfred last week fined the Astros $5 million, took away four draft picks and suspended for the season manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow, both of whom were subsequently fired. Managers Alex Cora of the Red Sox and Carlos Beltrán of the Mets also lost their jobs because of their roles with the Astros in 2017.

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