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AJ Hinch Releases Statement and Apologizes for Role in Astros Sign-Stealing Scandal

AJ Hinch
AJ Hinch failed to stop his players from stealing signs, resulting in his suspension and firing. | Duane Burleson/Getty Images

On Monday, former Houston Astros manager AJ Hinch was handed one of the heaviest managerial punishments in the history of baseball due to his involvement in the organization's sign-stealing scandal.

After further investigation into claims of cheating made by former Astros pitcher Mike Fiers, the MLB found that the Houston Astros, during their 2017 championship run, used a camera in center field to relay signs to hitters. The video of catchers' signs was relayed to a monitor in the clubhouse tunnel, and to notify the hitter what pitch was coming players would hit a nearby trashcan.

Although he didn't directly participate in or condone the actions, AJ Hinch was suspended for the entirety of the 2020 season for failing to stop players from participating in these actions.

After the suspension was handed out to not only him but to general manager Jeff Luhnow as well, both were fired from their positions. The Astros were then fined $5 million and stripped of both their first and second-round draft picks for the 2020 and 2021 drafts.

In his apology that he made Monday evening, Hinch acknowledged that he failed to stop his players from cheating, and that he accepted the MLB commissioner's decision to suspend him for the 2020 season. According to the investigation, Hinch showed remorse for not stopping the actions, but he ultimately holds responsibility for the scandal.

Although Hinch was not the main culprit and many around baseball can see him getting a coaching job again in 2021, this is a stain on his resume and for that matter his legacy.