Little League Teams Banned From Naming Clubs After Houston Astros

In the District 16/31 Little League near Williamsport, there will be no Astros

Little League Bans Teams From Naming Clubs After Astros
Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros is congratulated by his teammate Carlos Correa. (Bob Levey/Getty)
By Evan Bleier / February 20, 2020 9:51 am

Little League teams in a division located near Williamsport, Pennsylvania, have been banned from naming themselves after the Houston Astros.

Bob Bertoni, the head of District 16/31 Little League, wants to send a message to his 4,000 players that stealing signs is not a part of baseball as long as they are under his watch.

Though a few teams used the Astros name last season, Bertoni doesn’t want any of the 23 teams in the leagues he oversees to utilize Houston’s name after the team’s sign-stealing scandal because he doesn’t want any of his players to emulate that sort of behavior.

“Right now, in our leagues, the Astros are suspended,” Bertoni told The Associated Press. “Our kids emulate and idolize major league players. I don’t think we as an organization should be idolizing teams that have decided not to play by the rules.”

Two Little League communities in Southern California have also banned the Astros team name for the upcoming season, partially because Houston beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 2017 World Series at the end of one of the seasons when the Texas team was known to be cheating.

With Little League heads set to convene in Hartford in two weeks, Bertoni believes the Astros will be a big talking point and that more divisions will ban teams from using Houston’s name.

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