The Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros have one fewer thing to worry about as the teams wait for the regular season to get underway. A judge dismissed one of the sign-stealing lawsuits against both clubs Friday, saying the evidence was too weak to proceed.
The lawsuit in question was filed by daily fantasy players against the Astros, Red Sox and Major League Baseball. The fantasy players have argued that since those teams cheated — and MLB was aware of it — that games those teams participated in were not fair. Had daily fantasy players known about the sign-stealing scandals, they would have adjusted how they bet on the Astros and Red Sox.
Judge Jed Rakoff wasn’t a fan of that argument, saying cheating has always been a part of the game.
Strong opener from Rakoff:— Daniel Wallach (@WALLACHLEGAL) April 3, 2020
A sport that celebrates “stealing,” even if only of a base, may not provide the perfect encouragement to scrupulous play. But as Frank Sinatra famously said to Grace Kelly (in the 1956 movie musical High Society), "there are rules about such things.” pic.twitter.com/cJoL3siX9V
Rakoff’s argument boils down to this: Bettors should know teams will do anything to win. He cites spitballs, corked bats and steroids to make his argument. By Rakoff’s logic, the sign-stealing scandal is the risk bettors take when they place money on a sport known for cheating scandals.
What happens to the Astros and Red Sox next?
The dismissal is good news for the Red Sox. The team hasn’t been mentioned in any other lawsuits surrounding its sign-stealing scandal ... yet. While it’s also good news for the Astros, Houston is dealing with multiple lawsuits as a result of their sign-stealing scandal. Former MLB pitcher Mike Bolsinger is suing the team claiming the sign-stealing scandal ruined his MLB career. Astros season-ticket holders are also suing the team for “deceptively overcharging” fans during the scandal.
Those two lawsuits against the Astros are still pending.
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