Major League Baseball has a serious credibility problem, and this time we are not talking about The House That Steroids Built. It’s the return of the sign-stealing, cheating scandal that tainted both the 2017 Houston Astros and the 2018 Boston Red Sox as “champions”—because MLB just doesn’t have the integrity to mess with its revenue streams, even when ethics and morality are at stake.
When you slap a kid on the wrist, it’s not really a deterrent to bad behavior. Likewise, when you do basically nothing at all to punish a major-league franchise for cheating its way to profits and success (as is the case with teams in Boston, Houston, and San Francisco), why would those teams ever stop doing what they are doing? Without serious consequences, nothing changes … ever.
So, here we go again with the 2021 MLB playoffs, where the Trashstros again are being accused of cheating (while the Giants once again slide under the radar, of course, despite the Game of Shadows cloud hanging over their entire existence for the last 22-plus years). What is even funnier is that Houston Manager Dusty Baker has taken offense to this, ignoring his own enablement of MLB cheaters.
This is the joke that MLB has become, and we’re not even going to discuss the Tampa Bay-Boston fiasco from last night, as it is irrelevant to this conversation. We are objective here, and the umps made the right call by the rule book there, even if it ends up shafting everyone’s favorite underdog—and the rule itself should be modified to allow for common-sense situations.
We stopped truly watching the NBA closely after the 1996 Finals for reasons to do with some clear game fixing, and we’ve never looked back. We’re tired of the NFL and its enabling of Tom Brady, despite three obvious strikes against his credibility and integrity. Now, MLB is right behind these two leagues in sacrificing what’s right in exchange for higher profits. We blame Bud Selig, of course.
Bring on the NHL, please: The league starts its new season tomorrow, and it cannot come soon enough.