Red Sox - Yankees Cheating 'Scandal'
Please try it ONNNNNEEEE more time just onnnneee more time


Dr. D was tearing the oval-top off a crisp new box of Kleenex and doing his best to scroll through his Twitter followees with the spare 20% of his brain.  Oh!, what's this ... Bill James had a quip "in reply," something like "Don't forget ineffective."  If you're not on Twitter, a 3-word Tweet means that somebody said something first.  Well, usually.  With over half of his Kleenex supply left, he clicked On James' already-amusing punch line, and scrolled up to the original Tweet.  Michael Silverman BB, who somehow crushed 5 separate rage-monster insults into 140 characters.  Go check James' Twitter feed if you hunger for details. 

If you missed it, and I had, here is a well-written NY Post article on the subject, something about the Red Sox cheating.  Don't miss the fact that the Post bylined four (4) writers on a story that had what, like 600 words, and wouldn't have made the comments cut underneath a decent SSI physics or Carlos Ruiz post.  But the Exec Sum is that --- > the Red Sox had a trainer sitting in the dugout using an Apple Watch to more quickly receive stolen signs than Billy Martin used to be able to do.  ... well, not Billy.  But quicker than Earl used to be able to.  

Either Silverman or I know next to nothing about baseball.  (Come to think of it, that's an and/or, isn't it.)  The Commish did everything to signal the audience of the routine-ness of the subject short of doing Jim Carrey out-takes to Red Sox veeps in the audience.  Girardi was asked about "charges and counter-charges" and smirked, "you can assume what you want."  So, no, the concept that MLB teams might occasionally try to cheat isn't exactly the takeaway for the erudite SSI reader.

It gets a little closer to a "takeaway" to notice a person like Bill James wryly biting his tongue in reply to a person like Michael Silverman.


Minor takeaway for Dr. D, at least, was this rather succulent quote from Brett Gardner:


“It was something we suspected was going on,” Brett Gardner said. “I don’t want to say I was suspicious. I think there’s certain teams over the course of a season or a series or two seasons, teams that maybe have a higher average against you or hit a lot better against you with runners in scoring position, things like that.’’


There is a vague feeling of "inevitability" that sometimes surrounds Mariner losses particularly, such as the 2001 ALCS demolition by the Yankee$.  But you get this creepy feeling of inevitability a lot of times, usually on the road, and the last time I had it was the Angels series we just got smashed in.  I've felt for twenty-five years like the Mariners don't cheat very good.  (Naturally, the Angels might have swept that series fair 'n square.)

Big-money sports are so, um, what's the word .. big-money, that I'm just glad when they're not fixed as bad as the NBA is.*  I'm glad that the NFL likes parity, glad that no American sport is Serie A and glad for QuesTec.  Baseball fans have the pretty clean end of the stick by comparison.

Of course, it could be that BOTH Silverman and I know nothing about nothing.


Dr D

*As bad I PERSONALLY BELIEVE the NBA is fixed.  There y'go Geoff.  



When that happens, any idea how often the pitcher and catcher would change pitches in response?  ... even if they could do so, you'd still have forced them off their preferred pitch.



but I love how baseball, from little league up, directly incorporates the concept of stealing signs into the play style.  Changing up catcher signs with runners on base is something any pitcher is taught to do--why on Earth would people *not* think that at the highest levels of the sport, where EVERYTHING ELSE happens with several generations' refinement, stealing signs would not also have evolved into a higher form?

If you ain't cheatin', you ain't tryin' hard enough.

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