Boston Red Sox punished for 'sign-stealing' in 2018 season

Boston beat the Los Angeles Dodgers to win the 2018 World Series
Boston beat the Los Angeles Dodgers to win the 2018 World Series

The Boston Red Sox have been stripped of their second-round draft pick after a Major League Baseball investigation into claims they used video replays to steal signs from catchers to pitchers during the 2018 season.

The team’s video replay system operator JT Watkins has also been suspended for a year.

Catchers use hand signals to tell pitchers what delivery to throw.

The use of electronic equipment to steal signs is banned by MLB.

The Red Sox won the 2018 World Series with victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred concluded that neither then-manager Alex Cora nor any other Red Sox staff were aware of Watkins’ actions.

Cora was sacked as Red Sox coach in January for his role in a sign-stealing scandal while Houston Astros coach in 2017, for which he was suspended for the 2020 season.

"MLB acknowledged the front office's extensive efforts to communicate and enforce the rules and concluded that Alex Cora, the coaching staff, and most of the players did not engage in, nor were they aware of, any violations," said Red Sox chief executive Sam Kennedy.

"Regardless, these rule violations are unacceptable. We apologise to our fans and Major League Baseball, and accept the commissioner's ruling."

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