A Brief History of Cheating in Baseball



Throughout history, integrity of sports and competition has been held to a high standard, but there have been people who question the integrity and how sports are ran today. From the 1919 Black Socks, to even the World Series champions Houston Astros, baseball has always had some type of dishonesty going on. There have been many careers lost because athletes chose to not do the right thing and decided that taking the short cut when having a problem was a good idea.


Since the beginning of baseball, there has been cheating going on. Dating back to 1919, the Chicago Black Socks got in trouble for throwing the 1919 World Series against the Cincinnati Reds. Eight players, including star player Joe “Shoeless Joe” Jackson, were involved in the scandal. Each of the players were paid $80,000 to $100,000 to lose the games on purpose. In 1920, a private investigator was hired to investigate the suspicion of the games because there was a lot of controversy over how the games ended. Because of the scandal, all eight players who were involved were terminated from baseball and lost all credibility in the MLB. Since then, cheating has found a way into baseball and has only evolved since then.


The most recent scandal that has happened in today’s age is the Houston Astros and how they managed to bang their way into the World Series and bring a ring back home to Houston. In the 2019, the Houston Astros used technology and other techniques to steal the opposing teams’ signs to gain advantage over the teams they were playing. From using tv monitors in the dugout, to banging a bat on a trash can, they used these ideas to let their hitters know what type of pitch the pitcher is throwing.

In the Division Playoffs against the New York Yankees, second baseman Jose Altuve sent the Astros to the World Series with a walk-off homerun with the help of his teammates banging on trashcans to let him know what is coming. With the extra help they received, the Houston Astros went on to win the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Even though they got caught cheating, and even some people have admitted to it, no players were suspended, and no one involved was fined.


Since the first pitch of baseball, people have always had a reason to question the integrity of the game. If it were not for all the pitch tipping, there would be one less reason for people to dislike one another, careers be cut short, and goals shattered because a player decided they felt the need to add an advantage to their game. With technology growing, the MLB is cracking down on all the ways teams, coaches, and players can find a way to cheat their way to the top.

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