Astros Trying Not To Let Sign-Stealing Fallout Linger

Baker would like to move on, while the Astros work to rebuild their reputation

Brandon Scott
February 14, 2020 - 12:46 pm

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Even for Dusty Baker, who has been around Major League since the late 1960s, the scene at Astros spring training Thursday was unprecedented. 

Comparisons were made to Sammy Sosa's corked bat discovery in 2003, and the steroid era, which Baker was closely connected to as a manager. Baker was the Chicago Cubs manager in '03, and before that, he managed Barry Bonds. 

Sosa's corked bat was a one-time thing and it seemed to be over. The steroid era also focused on individual players who were implicated, rather than finding fault with an entire team. 

On Thursday, Baker joined Astros owner Jim Crane and the key players remaining from the 2017 World Series team to address the electronic sign-stealing scandal, which is what brought Baker here.

Crane struggled to acknowledge the competitve benefit of sign-stealing, while the players by and large did a decent job of holding themselves accountable.

Now, Baker would like to move on, while the Astros work to rebuild their reputation.

"It’s in the past now," Baker said Friday. "I’m hoping the players don’t have to answer anymore questions about it because how many times can you say the same thing? It’s time for us to get to work, put it behind us, ask for forgiveness. The guys said they were sorry. I’ve got a book I’m reading now, Break Free, and it says that you ask for forgiveness and that you never mention it again.

"Just like if you have an argument in your household, everybody get it out, now it’s over with and don’t mention it or else it lingers. And we’re trying not to let it linger."

As far whether the Astros are more motivated now, Jose Altuve said it's the same as every year.

"I think we're a pretty motivated team every single year," Altuve said. "This year, that has not changed. We have the same motivation to go out there and win some games."

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