Brian Cashman Says Astros Had ‘Distinct Advantage’ In 2017

Yankees General Manager Speaks On Houston’s Sign-Stealing Scandal

Brandon Contes
February 14, 2020 - 4:05 pm

The Houston Astros can attempt to spin their sign-stealing scandal by saying it didn’t give them an advantage in 2017, but Yankees general manager Brian Cashman doesn’t buy it.

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"Without question," Cashman said in response to a question regarding whether or not sign stealing impacted the 2017 ALCS.

"The Houston Astros were dealing with a distinct advantage more so than their opponents," Cashman continued while speaking to reporters. "That’s a fact. I don’t think anybody can disagree with that. Even though they may try."

Those comments from the Yankees general manager came after Astros owner Jim Crane told reporters their sign-stealing system didn’t affect the outcome of games.

"Our opinion is this didn't impact the game," Crane said Thursday as the Astros held a press conference to open spring training. "We had a good team. We won the World Series and we'll leave it at that."

The Yankees were eliminated by the Astros in the 2017 ALCS while Houston went on to win the World Series, a championship that is now viewed by many as tarnished. Following the seven-game series, the Yankees parted ways with their manager Joe Girardi, replacing him with Aaron Boone. Boone’s Yankees lost to the ALCS to the Astros again in 2019.

Speaking to the media earlier this week, Boone wasn’t so sure the Astros played fair in 2019 either.

“I’ve spent time, as I’m sure a lot of people have, wondering all the things that could have potentially been going on, and probably we’ll never know for sure, frankly,” Boone said. “The exciting thing about it is with how Major League Baseball, I feel like, has dealt with this … it’s something that will aid our sport moving forward.”

The Astros were only punished by Major League Baseball for cheating in 2017 and not for anything that occurred in the two seasons after, although many people believe Houston continued using electronic devices to assist their sign-stealing schemes.

Carlos Beltran was deemed to have played a major role in implementing the Astros illegal sign-stealing methods, reportedly touting Houston as being "behind the times" when he joined the team as a player in 2017. Beltran was with the Yankees during the three seasons prior to joining Houston in 2017, but according to Cashman the retired centerfielder did not influence their organization to do anything illegal.

"Well Carlos Beltran was a part of our organization last year and didn't have any influence," Cashman said according to SNY. "We did things right," the Yankees general manager added.