Every-Thing Sports

How I feel about the Astros’ haters

www.mlb.com/astros

Last Thursday, the Astros got to Spring Training and held a press conference to apologize for their sign stealing scandal. Getting out in front of something with an apology is ideal, but this was foreshadowed by team owner Jim Crane weeks in advance. It seemed as if Alex Bregman didn't want to be there, Jim Crane was uncomfortable, Dusty Baker was being Dusty, and Jose Altuve looked like he was held hostage. I wrote about them going full heel turn Thursday night and leaning into the bad guy role this season. The apologies didn't fair well with the public or some members of the media. That's when the fake outrage began.

I say fake outrage because most of the coverage of this has been strictly geared towards the Astro. Meanwhile, there are other teams (namely the Red Sox) who are also under investigation. Tea leaves are out there of the about other teams cheating as well (namely the Yankees). Why are they so riled up? Why do they care so deeply? Here's how I feel about the Astro haters:

Fake Outrage

The Red Sox investigation and report will be dropping any day now. They parted ways with manager Alex Cora. The Mets fired their manager Carlos Beltran as well. Both guys were with the Astros in 2017 and spearheaded the sign stealing. Beltran was with the Yankees before coming to the Astros. He told them they were behind the times when it came to sign stealing. Chris Young admitted he brought the use of an Apple Watch to the Red Sox after learn after learning it from the Yankees. Both teams were fined an undisclosed amount in 2017. That info was totally lost on me. I needed to use my Google machine. Why? Because there was very little to no coverage of it. The media, and MLB, probably didn't want to expose the two most popular teams in the league for cheating. Where was all this energy back then?

Extensive History of Cheating

MLB has had a storied history of cheating. For just about the entire 117 year history of the league, there's been cheating in one way shape form or another. Spitballs, corked bats, Vaseline, pine tar, sandpaper, greenies, steroids, Black Sox, and yes, sign stealing. I'm not even listing everything, just the things off the top of my head. The steroid scandal rocked MLB to its core. However, it's gotten to the point now where some of those guys are eligible for the Hall of Fame and are gaining more support every year. I heard some calling for bans for those guys, but it's largely died out. This too shall pass, but the extent of the vitriol seems to be much more aggressive now than in the heat of the steroid scandal.

Glass Houses

When you throw rocks at glass, it typically shatters. That's how I feel about a lot of these players going so hard at the Astros. Some of them more than likely have benefitted from some form of cheating. Maybe not to the extent the Astros have, but literally everyone steals signs in some form. The members of the media are just as bad. Some of them are hot take click-baiting to boost their following and ratings, especially that one crybaby punk from New York who's curiously ignored the teams from the Northeast and their parts in the cheating, but has a hard-on for the Astros. Keep that same energy when the Red Sox are exposed. I highly doubt Manfred has the balls to investigate the Yankees, so I won't hold my breathe.

Tomfoolery and Stupidity

From the frivilous lawsuits to the hot takes to the regurgitation of misinformation as fact, the tomfoolery and stupidity is in rare form. Social media has been a major platform for all the idiots out there who want to clout chase by jumping on the anti-Astro bandwagon. When I saw a season ticket holder filed a lawsuit against the team, I knew it was a clout chase. How can you sue the team you've given money to? People will often put things out there like this to draw to themselves. Media members and outlets do it for the clicks and ratings. But average people do it for other reasons. I need Raheel to do a "Follow The Money" segment on the people filing these lawsuits, the ones spewing misinformation, and especially the hot take media members.

To all the Astro haters out there: I got two words for ya...I'm so sick of the way people are responding to this as if they've lived guilt-free lives of perfect virtue. We all have done wrong and have all done things we regret. So who made us judge, jury, and executioner to those we attempt to pass judgement on? Look in the mirror before you criticize others and be willing to take your medicine when you do wrong. The Astros appear ready to take what's coming to them. They see the ravenous crowd with their pitchforks and torches coming. They know what they'll be facing. That's why I said embrace it. Relish in the role of the bad guys and become the cool heels that the crowd eventually has no choice but to cheer when they win the World Series this year.

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Houston loses to end the road trip

Dodgers get best of Odorizzi to split series with Astros

Jake Odorizzi allowed four home runs over three innings against the Dodgers on Wednesday. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images.

After spoiling the night of many Dodgers fans in the opener of this two-game series in Los Angeles the night prior, the Astros returned to the stadium to a fresh set of hostile fans, looking to get the mini-sweep. This one went much more in favor of the home team, though, as the Dodgers would ride three big innings to start the game to the win for the series split.

Final Score: Dodgers 7, Astros 5

Astros' Record: 65-43, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Max Scherzer (9-4)

Losing Pitcher: Jake Odorizzi (4-6)

Odorizzi gets shelled

After a Michael Brantley solo home in the top of the first run against Max Scherzer, making his Dodger debut, it looked like the Astros may continue their momentum from the night before to grab hold of this game as well. However, that all changed in the bottom of the inning, as the Dodgers would tee off against Jake Odorizzi.

In that inning, he allowed four runs, a leadoff solo shot by Mookie Betts, then later a three-run blast by Will Smith. Betts made it 2-for-2 with solo homers in the bottom of the second, extending the lead to 5-1. Things went from bad to worse in the third, with Los Angeles getting their fourth home run, this one for two runs to make it a 7-1 game. Odorizzi would finish the third but go no further.

Scherzer K's 10 over seven innings in his Dodger debut

Houston tried to start clawing back into it in the top of the fourth, getting a second run against Scherzer with a two-out RBI-single by Kyle Tucker, trimming the lead to five runs at 5-2. First out of Houston's bullpen was Yimi Garcia in the bottom of the fourth, and he tossed the first 1-2-3 inning for Houston. Rafael Montero was next in the bottom of the fifth, working around a leadoff double followed by a walk for a scoreless inning.

Montero remained in the game in the bottom of the sixth, still 7-2, and would get another scoreless inning, this time sitting down the Dodgers in order. Scherzer finished his quality debut for his new team in the top of the seventh, erasing a leadoff walk to complete seven innings while allowing two runs.

Astros lose to split the series with Dodgers

Brooks Raley was Houston's next reliever, and he, too, would get through a scoreless inning by erasing a two-out single. In the game-within-the-game, the Dodgers brought in Joe Kelly for the top of the eighth, who notched two strikeouts to bring none other than Carlos Correa to the plate, setting up a rematch of the well-known incident that led to the "pouty face" clip from 2020. Carlos Correa won this round, launching a 405-foot homer off of Kelly to make it a four-run game at 7-3.

Phil Maton kept the score there, stranding two runners in the bottom of the eighth to send the 7-3 game to the top of the ninth, where the Dodgers would bring in Kenley Jansen. After a leadoff single, Kyle Tucker would get the Astros within two runs on a two-run homer, making it 7-5. That's as close as they would get, as Jansen would regroup to get the next three batters out to wrap up the loss for Houston.

Up Next: With this road trip completed, the Astros will have a quick turnaround as they catch a late flight back to Houston then turn around with a game Thursday at 7:10 PM Central to open a four-game series with the Twins. Framber Valdez (7-2, 3.01 ERA) will take the mound for Houston in the opener, while Minnesota will counter with Griffin Jax (1-1, 6.41 ERA).

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