The Houston Astros' sign-stealing scandal has propelled them to the top of sports news and all eyes will be on them as we head into the 2020 MLB season.
But, despite the Astros' cheating ways, they weren't able to take down the Washington Nationals, who persevered to win the organization's first World Series since its inception in 2005. The Nationals bats showed up big time in the playoffs, but the club would not have hoisted the World Series trophy without Stephen Strasburg, Max Scherzer and the rest of its pitching core to thank.
In tandem, Scherzer and Strasburg combined for 84 strikeouts in the postseason, 24 of which came against the Astros in the World Series. Considering there's a real chance the Astros were stealing signs, those numbers are especially remarkable.
It takes a lot to shut down the Astros' lineup, especially one that knows what pitch is coming. That advantage didn't plague the Nats.
The Astros' cheating allegations have weighed heavily upon the organization, and while the baseball world tries to recover from its latest scandal. In the mean time, fans should take into consideration just how impressive the Nats' pitchers were, even with the odds against them.
Deservedly so, Stephen Strasburg was named the World Series MVP, and his performance is even more impressive in light of the controversy.