With the 2020 MLB season drawing near, there have been cries for the 2017 Houston Astros team to relinquish their World Series title in wake of a cheating scandal. The fans believe that the team does not deserve the title of "champions." The decision to give back the rings has not been made, but one former player in Ken Giles is willing to do whatever is requested of him.
Speaking with the Toronto Star, Giles said he would oblige with whatever MLB asks. He said that "what was going on at the time was not ok" in reference to the sign-stealing during the season and into the World Series.
The Houston Astros have received some punishment from Major League Baseball and Commissioner Rob Manfred, including a fine of $5 million and the forfeiture of draft picks in 2020 and 2021. Manager AJ Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow were both suspended for one year for their roles in the scandal and were subsequently fired by the team.
In January 2020, MLB released a nine-page report that detailed how the Astros stole signs from their opponents during the 2017-18 regular seasons and postseasons. This included the use of a trash can to alert batters about incoming pitches.
The players have no received any punishment for their roles in the scheme despite an outcry from the public. Fellow pitchers have hit the Astros batters seven times during spring training, which has led many fans to believe that they are being purposely targeted.
Giles spent 2016-18 with the Astros while serving as a relief pitcher. However, he told the Toronto Star that he was unaware of any cheating taking place during his time with the team.
"I was not aware about anything," he said. "It crushed me to learn about the stuff that went on when I was there. I had no idea. ...I was blindsided by the commissioner's report. Up until then, I honestly didn't believe it."
The former Astros pitcher is not the only player that has mentioned giving back his championship ring. Mike Fiers of the Oakland Athletics, who spent 2015-17 with the Astros, also said that it "wouldn't be the end of the world" to part ways with his ring.0comments
Fiers is the player that originally brought the alleged sign-stealing to light. He went on record in November 2019 and detailed the methods used to steal opposing signs. His revelations prompted MLB's investigation into the matter.
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