Effectively Wild Episode 1456: Sign Language

Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller banter about the latest linguistic crimes by Scott Boras, then discuss the Astros sign-sealing scandal, touching on Mike Fiers’ role in the revelations, whether sign-stealing actually benefited the Astros, the immorality of sign-stealing, what the Astros’ punishment should be, the history of sign-stealing, whether the Astros sign-stealers acted alone, whether other teams are stealing signs in a similar way, what MLB can do to prevent electronic sign-stealing, the future of pitch-calling, moral hypotheticals, the implications for Carlos Beltrán and Alex Cora, and more, plus a Stat Blast about close MVP races.

Audio intro: Eric Clapton (with Bob Dylan), "Sign Language"
Audio outro: Moe Bandy (with Janie Fricke), "It’s a Cheating Situation"

Link to The Athletic’s report on Astros sign-stealing
Link to 2018 Passan report
Link to story on 2017 sign-stealing scandals
Link to BP article on 2019 Astros sign-stealing examples
Link to Jomboy breakdown of Astros sign-stealing
Link to story on Nationals’ plan to counteract sign-stealing
Link to report about Beltrán’s role
Link to story about Beltrán’s denial
Link to story about Cray supercomputer
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Noah Baronmember
3 years ago

You guys are completely missing the point. Not everything is about numbers, it’s basic ethics. They cheated, they lied about it, they called people who accused them of cheating crazy. It’s so unethical I can’t wrap my head around people defending this

3 years ago
Reply to  Noah Baron

I agree. THis iwas a lazy way to even look at the numbers too, especially when we have no idea if they actually cheated on the road as well, and who’s to say they did this *all the time*? Makes sense to keep it for higher lev situations.

And the comparison should be made from what we have in video evidence, gather up all the times you can hear the bangs from the videos (guys on reddit have been on it and compiled a looot of games this was used) and compare to the ones you couldn’t hear.

Otherwise this is such a lazy argument. Ben & Sam I usually love your columns & your podcast but this was just lazy & too flippant over the fact that they may have cheated their way onto the WS

And thus, I opine that the Astros must be destroyed.

Ceterum censeo Astra delenda esse

3 years ago
Reply to  Noah Baron

There is literally no evidence they actually cheated unless you like doctored video from a millennial butthurt Yankee fan. Get out of here with your garbage. There is nothing more to this “scandal” than crying, whining, bleeding, temper tantrum Yankee fans creating something out of nothing because their overpaid and overvalued team wasn’t even close to good enough to beat their daddy Astros, who own them in every which way since 2015 despite the YANKEES best attempts to cheat. And now the biased east coast media jumps on board, along with idiots like you who believe any allegation without evidence because of your jealousy toward the team in question.

3 years ago
Reply to  Hinched

Lol at thinking official Youtube vids from MLB official acct are doctored. Truly delusional

3 years ago
Reply to  jamesdakrn

Forgot to add:

Furthermore, I think that the Astros must be destroyed

Ceterum censeo Astra delenda esse