Between 2013 and 2014, Chris Correa, the St. Louis Cardinals’ scouting director at the time hacked into the Houston Astros’ servers multiple times and accessed confidential data about potential Astros’ draft picks, player information and trade talks among other information that he should not have seen from one of his 29 competitors. Federal prosecutors estimated this action as costing the Astros $1.7 million in intellectual property and proceeded to agree to a plea bargain that put Correa in federal prison for 46 moths and cost him approximately $280,000 in fines.
The sentencing occurred on July 19, 2016, almost five months ago, and since that time major league baseball has been quieter than crickets in announcing what they would or would not do to the Cardinal organization as a result of this federal crime. The thought was that MLB could possibly fine the Cardinals, take away draft picks from them or even award picks from the Cards to the Astros as punishment. But nothing has happened.
MLB has suspended players such as Jose Reyes and Aroldis Chapman for domestic abuse in situations where they did not get convicted of a crime or sent to prison (though they may have deserved it). This is not to downplay the handling of domestic abuse, but to ask the question – Why is there a delay in this situation? A serious crime occurred according to the federal government. Guilt was found and punishment meted out from a legal standpoint. What is MLB waiting for 5 months later to take action on one of their own teams?
- Do they think that Luhnow had taken proprietary information from the Cards and deserved to be hacked?
- Do they not hold teams to the same standards they hold individual players?
- Are they hoping that this will fade away and fans, writers and other interested parties will forget about it?
- Do they think that Correa was truly a lone wolf rogue and don’t hold the Cards responsible for what he did?
The bottom line is that it is time for the MLB to come forward even if it is to find the Cardinals blameless in this crime. The Astros might have made different free agent decisions this off-season, if hypothetically they had received an extra 1st round pick from the Cards in the upcoming draft. It is time for the inaction and silence to end.