It looks like the Blue Jays’ division rival the Boston Red Sox will get off pretty easy when it comes to punishment from the MLB office.
It feels like an awfully long time since the MLB office came down with their punishments for the Houston Astros organization, and almost immediately afterward, the question turned to when the Red Sox would face consequences.
We got our answer on Wednesday, and the punishment feels pretty light to me.
The Red Sox were hit with the loss of a 2nd round pick in the upcoming draft, and their former manager Alex Cora was suspended for the 2020 season. Of course, he was already fired by the Red Sox for his involvement in the Astros’ scandal, and it’s possible we may not even have a 2020 season. It’s also worth noting that Cora was punished for his involvement with the Astros, and not for anything that happened while he worked in Boston.
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The only other punishment that was handed out was served to the Red Sox replay official, who ended up being the fall guy for most of what happened in Boston. J.T. Watkins is his name, and he’s not allowed to work as a replay official again until after the 2021 season. As for the players, they were not allowed to be punished in this scenario, as was the case with the Astros.
There are a few points to consider here. First, the league genuinely messed up the handling of the Astros scandal, and I think the vast majority of baseball fans would agree that their punishment was too light. The problem with that precedent is that now what the Red Sox are being punished for looks like child’s play compared to an elaborate sign-stealing scheme, complete with trash can banging and secret cameras. The league had to give Boston a smaller punishment based on the limited evidence they found with their investigation, and I’m sure that’s how they came up with the end result.
But let’s not kid ourselves here, I think it’s more than a bit of a joke that the MLB office expects us to believe that Watkins worked on his own, and that Cora was unaware of what was going on. After the way the Astros’ situation was handled, I’m not at all surprised we’re being fed this narrative, but I don’t buy it for a second.
Either way though, it looks like all the Red Sox will lose out of the deal is a 2nd round pick. For what it’s worth though, Bo Bichette was a second round pick, so perhaps the Red Sox will lose out on an impact player, even if their punishment is pretty light.