Astros Owner Jim Crane Says Sign Stealing “Didn’t Impact the Game”

Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve did apologize for what the team did in 2017

Astros Owner Jim Crane Says Sign Stealing "Didn’t Impact the Game"
Owner Jim Crane of the Houston Astros. (Michael Reaves/Getty)
By Evan Bleier / February 13, 2020 11:52 am

During prepared remarks he made on Thursday as Houston opens spring training, Astros owner Jim Crane denied that the team stealing signs in 2017 had any impact on the ballclub winning games or the World Series.

“Our opinion is this didn’t impact the game,” Crane said. “We had a good team. We won the World Series. We’ll leave it at that.”

Crane, who also said he should not be held accountable for the team stealing signs, fired general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch before they received one-year bans from MLB.

“It could have been stopped and it wasn’t stopped,” Crane said. “Our players should not be punished. … These are a great group of guys who did not receive proper guidance from their leaders.”

Despite what Crane had to say, two of his most prominent players — Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve — issued apologies on Thursday for what the team did in 2017.

“I am really sorry about the choices that were made by my team, by the organization and by me,” Bregman said. “I’ve learned from this and I hope to regain the trust of baseball fans.”

Altuve added: “We had a great team meeting last night and the whole organization and the team feels bad about what happened in 2017. We especially feel remorse for our fans and for the game of baseball.”

The contradiction between the statements from the owner and the players did not go unnoticed.

Crane did promise during his remarks that technologically advanced sign-stealing would “never happen again on my watch.”

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