Dodgers Rumors: Suspicions Arose Of Astros Manipulating Baseballs In 2017 World Series
World Series baseball
David J. Phillip/Pool Photo via USA TODAY Sports

Prior to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic postponing the start of the 2020 season, the Houston Astros were the talk of MLB after being found to have electronically stolen signs in 2017.

The organization used a camera in center field at Minute Maid Park to capture the signs of opposing catchers and then relayed them to batters by banging on a trash can.

A new book by SNY’s Andy Martino titled, “Cheated: The Inside Story of the Astros Scandal and a Colorful History of Sign Stealing,” takes a deeper look into the scandal and brings previously unknown details to light.

In a special to the L.A. Times, an excerpt from Martino’s book reveals the Los Angeles Dodgers had additional suspicions that Astros pitchers were using doctored baseballs:

Shortly after the series moved back to Houston, the Dodgers felt that Astros pitchers were rejecting baseballs more frequently than is typical, tossing them back to the umpire and requesting new ones.

Then an L.A. pitcher approached his front office with an observation: The balls that the Astros were using were mudded up differently. They were visibly darker. “These game balls are suspicious,” the pitcher said.

Doctored baseballs have dominated headlines within baseball this past month, as the league is ramping up efforts to prevent pitchers from using foreign substances to increase their spin rates.

Such has led to historically poor offensive numbers and high strikeout totals across the sport. If the Astros indeed manipulated baseballs in the 2017 World Series to reach the same goal, it certainly didn’t pan out for them.

L.A. scored a combined 21 runs in their three games at Minute Maid Park — 12 of which came in an extra-inning loss in Game 5. The Dodgers bounced back with a win in Game 6, only to lose the winner-take-all bout at Dodger Stadium the following day.

Barnes unlikely to forgive Astros for cheating against Dodgers in 2017 World Series

Even after winning the World Series last year, Austin Barnes recently admitted he may never completely get over losing to the Astros in 2017.

“I don’t know if I’ll ever fully get over it,” Barnes said during the teams’ series at Minute Maid Park last month.

“Winning helps, obviously. If we never won a World Series, that would’ve been pretty hard to swallow. Not trying to go too deep into it, but we could’ve won twice. I don’t know. It’s a weird little situation, but we’re looking forward to playing these two games.”

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