Red Sox escape major punishment for stealing signals
The MLB fined the Boston Red Sox an undisclosed amount for their illegal use of electronic equipment in the dugout, it was announced.
All the money from the fine will go to hurricane relief in Florida after the New York Yankees filled a complaint last month, alleging the Red Sox used an Apple Watch to relay decoded signs.
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred released a statement and wanted to make it clear the stealing of signs is not illegal in baseball.
"Major League Baseball Regulations do, however, prohibit the use of electronic equipment during games and state that no such equipment 'may be used for the purpose of stealing signs or conveying information designed to give a club an advantage,'" Manfred said.
"Despite this clear regulation, the prevalence of technology, especially the technology used in the replay process, has made it increasingly difficult to monitor appropriate and inappropriate uses of electronic equipment. Based on the investigation by my office, I have nonetheless concluded that during the 2017 season the Boston Red Sox violated the regulation quoted above by sending electronic communications from their video replay room to an athletic trainer in the dugout."
Manfred went on to say that the Red Sox front office had no knowledge of the violation and that Boston halted the violation as soon as the Yankees filed their complaint.
Finally, Manfred said that many clubs find ways to steal signs that do not violate MLB rules.
"Taking all of these factors as well as past precedent into account, I have decided to fine the Red Sox an undisclosed amount which in turn will be donated by my office to hurricane relief efforts in Florida," the statement continued.
"Moreover, all 30 clubs have been notified that future violations of this type will be subject to more serious sanctions, including the possible loss of draft picks."
The investigation also found that the Yankees were not in violation of league policy in stealing signs from their opponents as reported by the Red Sox. However, improper use of a dugout phone was found and Manfred subsequently fined the Yankees "a lesser undisclosed amount."