Former Astros GM Jeff Luhnow doesn’t appear to be telling the truth about the team’s sign-stealing scandal.
The Houston Astros got off pretty easy with their sign-stealing scandal. Zero players were punished and the main casualties, aside from fines, were manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow losing their jobs and serving one-year bans.
The players got all the way to the ALCS this postseason with Dusty Baker and Hinch is already a top managerial candidate for 2021. Luhnow is the odd man out and recently appeared on local television in Houston to say he knew nothing about the scandal.
Not accepting blame seems to be the Astro way with this scandal and Luhnow maintains his innocence. The only problem, as The Athletic’s Evan Drelich uncovered, is that he appears to contradict things discovered in MLB’s own investigation on the matter.
Tough to believe Luhnow and the Astros at this point
So those within the organization reportedly told the league he did have evidence of the sign-stealing and he was punished accordingly. Now he is trying to clear his name at the time when his ban is set to be up and he can seek a new job.
The Athletic’s reporting on this also explains how Luhnow received emails discussing the scheme. Ultimately, Luhnow was the general manager of the team and is responsible even if he claims he wasn’t intently reading the emails or engineering the sign-stealing. It was happening under his watch and he apparently admitted that was true.
Luhnow and Hinch’s suspensions are both up at the conclusion of the World Series. At one point Luhnow’s front office was seen as one of the best in all of baseball. Clearing his name now may result in a team taking a chance on him with the reasoning that it was the Astros players who did all the sign-stealing.
He may not have been in the video room himself banging on trash cans, but the scandal happened on his watch. That is not a sign of great leadership and any team hiring Luhnow would also want to clear up any lies before taking him aboard.