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  1. #176

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by theDurk View Post
    There is, of course, a really simple way to resolve the whole situation, using technology to fight technology. Give the catcher a wireless mic and speaker built into his mask, and the pitcher can have an earpiece and lapel mic. Make it all digitally encrypted to milspec. I know there will be a lot of moaning about "same game at all levels", but little league doesn't have three umpires and change the ball 80 times a game...at least they didn't in my time.

    If that is "too much communication", make it just a buzzer, one way, that can send one to five buzzes.
    This is a great solution. And the NFL already set the precedent for this with the coach calling in plays to the defense via radio. This system was implemented right after the spygate scandal was uncovered.

  2. #177
    New Murderer's Row False1's Avatar
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by yanksftw View Post
    I judge things on the principles, not the effectiveness. If sign stealing is cheating, then all sign stealing should be prohibited and harshly punished. If sign stealing has always been part of the game, then making it more effective by using technology is just another way to get an edge.

    I simply don't buy the assertion just cause you use technology instead of doing something in a rudimentary way it elevates it from harmless gamesmanship to outright cheating. The intent was always the same.

    Either sign stealing is cheating and all instances should be punished. Or it's part of the game. there is something fundamentally silly to me about the idea that "sign stealing is ok... as long as you don't use a camera". what about a binocular? is that allowed? how about a telescope? Should the MLB rulebook list all the equipment that is ok and all the ones that isn't?
    Still have no idea what your POV has to do with analytics, but I digress.

    This is just silly. If every time a poker player was bluffing you could manually detect it with a visual tell sitting across from them, you use that information to your advantage and you do so fairly. If you installed a undetectable camera in the table that streamed live video of your opponents' hands to your google glasses, that would be unacceptable. Do you need a specific rule to tell you that installing such a device is prohibited?

    If an NFL defense manually identifies a pattern that every time an opposing quarterback audibles the following play is going to be a going to be a screen pass to the RB, using that manually derived intelligence to the team's advantage is fair game. Would you need a specific rule saying the home team cannot deploy microscopic drones that hover in the huddle to hear the play calls?

    It's really not hard to understand. If it's manually detected by in-game players/personnel, that's fair game. If it's bolstered by technology or by others not in-game, that's out of bounds.

  3. #178
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    Quote Originally Posted by theDurk View Post
    There is, of course, a really simple way to resolve the whole situation, using technology to fight technology. Give the catcher a wireless mic and speaker built into his mask, and the pitcher can have an earpiece and lapel mic. Make it all digitally encrypted to milspec. I know there will be a lot of moaning about "same game at all levels", but little league doesn't have three umpires and change the ball 80 times a game...at least they didn't in my time.

    If that is "too much communication", make it just a buzzer, one way, that can send one to five buzzes.
    Thatís a quality suggestion.

  4. #179

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by False1 View Post
    Still have no idea what your POV has to do with analytics, but I digress.

    This is just silly. If every time a poker player was bluffing you could manually detect it with a visual tell sitting across from them, you use that information to your advantage and you do so fairly. If you installed a undetectable camera in the table that streamed live video of your opponents' hands to your google glasses, that would be unacceptable. Do you need a specific rule to tell you that installing such a device is prohibited?
    that's a complete false characterization and equivocation. a better analogy is installing a live camera which tapes the face of the player in order to better catch the visual tells. they are not looking at the hands directly. The signs are the visual tells

    If an NFL defense manually identifies a pattern that every time an opposing quarterback audibles the following play is going to be a going to be a screen pass to the RB, using that manually derived intelligence to the team's advantage is fair game. Would you need a specific rule saying the home team cannot deploy microscopic drones that hover in the huddle to hear the play calls?
    Funny you should bring that up. Because that's EXACTLY what happened and the NFL did need to institute a rule which specifically said that.

    That wasn't enough to prevent the Giants from stealing Brown's play calls in a 1956 game, though. Shortly after Brown pioneered the ability to radio in plays to his quarterback, the Giants figured out a way to intercept the signals with a receiver stationed on their bench.

    The league didn't even clarify that videotaping signals was illegal until 2006.
    the NFL didn't make a felony deal out of it, they just makes it harder to do going forward. which is the smarter solution.

    Criminal law in the US has always been about intent, not outcome. Sign stealing is sign stealing, saying it if you do it succesfully it's cheating otherwise it's not does not simply does not stand up to scrutiny. It's not a logically coherent position.

    Frankly MLB had this coming by fostering an environment where manual sign stealing was basically accepted. By taking that type of lax position, you are inviting teams to gain an advantage by being more sophisticated at stealing signs. Because the impression you are giving is that sign stealing is ok. In a competitive environment, it's natural for teams to push the boundaries of rules to gain an advantage. If the "rule" is that manual sign stealing is ok and there's no precedent saying technology assisted sign stealing is not, where do you think teams will go? The fault lies squarely with the MLB.
    Last edited by yanksftw; 11-19-19 at 08:56 AM.

  5. #180
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by theDurk View Post
    There is, of course, a really simple way to resolve the whole situation, using technology to fight technology. Give the catcher a wireless mic and speaker built into his mask, and the pitcher can have an earpiece and lapel mic. Make it all digitally encrypted to milspec. I know there will be a lot of moaning about "same game at all levels", but little league doesn't have three umpires and change the ball 80 times a game...at least they didn't in my time.

    If that is "too much communication", make it just a buzzer, one way, that can send one to five buzzes.
    I was thinking along these lines also, thanks for articulating it so clearly.

  6. #181

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by theDurk View Post
    There is, of course, a really simple way to resolve the whole situation, using technology to fight technology. Give the catcher a wireless mic and speaker built into his mask, and the pitcher can have an earpiece and lapel mic. Make it all digitally encrypted to milspec. I know there will be a lot of moaning about "same game at all levels", but little league doesn't have three umpires and change the ball 80 times a game...at least they didn't in my time.

    If that is "too much communication", make it just a buzzer, one way, that can send one to five buzzes.
    If the catcher says Fastball, Big Rock Candy Mountain or whatever code word they use for it, will not the batter standing just in front of the catcher hear him say it as well?
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  7. #182
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by fredgmuggs View Post
    If the catcher says Fastball, Big Rock Candy Mountain or whatever code word they use for it, will not the batter standing just in front of the catcher hear him say it as well?
    There is mic tech used by the military and police that can pick up barely audible voices. If it can't work in this application, the buzzer thing, with five buttons equivalent to five fingers, perhaps on the underside of his throwing side thigh, would work for sure.
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  8. #183

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by theDurk View Post
    There is mic tech used by the military and police that can pick up barely audible voices. If it can't work in this application, the buzzer thing, with five buttons equivalent to five fingers, perhaps on the underside of his throwing side thigh, would work for sure.
    I had a third grade teacher who could not only hear barely audible whispers from the back of the room, she also knew exactly what had been said.

    As for the buzzer thing, someone will be able to count the prompts. Kind of like guys who watch ATMs to get passwords.
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  9. #184
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Hoooo boy.



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  10. #185
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    When telepathy is invented in 2022, the only foolproof sign stealing prevention method will be literal tin foil hats. Those will unfortunately also prevent telepathic communication between pitchers and catchers.

    It's definitely true that there's no system that can't be broken given enough technology/thought. The escalation could get entertaining.

  11. #186
    New Murderer's Row False1's Avatar
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by yanksftw View Post
    that's a complete false characterization and equivocation. a better analogy is installing a live camera which tapes the face of the player in order to better catch the visual tells. they are not looking at the hands directly. The signs are the visual tells
    How so? Sitting across from someone at a poker table, if I can make a manual observation that I can use to my advantage, I'm going to use it. If a runner at 2B can see the sign the catcher puts down, and the defense does nothing to prevent it, that's intelligence I'm going to use. Why is your analogy better? Because it fits your perspective?

    Funny you should bring that up. Because that's EXACTLY what happened and the NFL did need to institute a rule which specifically said that.
    I stopped reading after "play calls in a 1956 game".

    Criminal law in the US has always been about intent, not outcome. Sign stealing is sign stealing, saying it if you do it succesfully it's cheating otherwise it's not does not simply does not stand up to scrutiny. It's not a logically coherent position.
    Last I checked the field is not manned by a bunch of plaintiffs and defendants. It's entertainment. It doesn't need to stand up to the scrutiny of criminal law. That's an extraordinarily odd take. It's needs to stand up to competitive balance. Manually observing and deciphering signs anyone can do. Installing technology in your home stadium not everyone can do. So, no. Not the same.

    Frankly MLB had this coming by fostering an environment where manual sign stealing was basically accepted. By taking that type of lax position, you are inviting teams to gain an advantage by being more sophisticated at stealing signs. Because the impression you are giving is that sign stealing is ok. In a competitive environment, it's natural for teams to push the boundaries of rules to gain an advantage. If the "rule" is that manual sign stealing is ok and there's no precedent saying technology assisted sign stealing is not, where do you think teams will go? The fault lies squarely with the MLB.
    I agree with this mostly. MLB should take the bulk of the blame here for not proactively and meaningfully prescribing extreme penalties for foreseeable rule violations in order to deter the behavior. With extraordinary rewards and expectations, teams will take extraordinary risks to win. The risks have to outweigh the rewards. MLB has been lax. I disagree though that they need to institute strict penalties for manual sign stealing. It's not the same, everyone does it and has an equal opportunity to do it and defend against it, and it would be nearly impossible to detect and enforce consistently. I also don't think they need to literally spell out various types of devices that cannot be used. "Oh, but you never told us we couldn't use cameras installed in our home field in real-time to view the signs, relay those electronically to the dugout where they can be audibly communicated to the batter. I had no idea!"

  12. #187
    New Murderer's Row False1's Avatar
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Jace View Post
    When telepathy is invented in 2022, the only foolproof sign stealing prevention method will be literal tin foil hats. Those will unfortunately also prevent telepathic communication between pitchers and catchers.

    It's definitely true that there's no system that can't be broken given enough technology/thought. The escalation could get entertaining.
    True. Even tech-based solutions can be hacked, one way or the other.

    That's why the penalty must be so extreme that one would have to be crazy to take the risk.

  13. #188
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Whoa, this whole thing is WILD. Hot damn.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/baseball/co...ent=t1_f838fp3
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  14. #189

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Snatch Catch View Post
    Whoa, this whole thing is WILD. Hot damn.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/baseball/co...ent=t1_f838fp3
    According to barstool that was posted the same day that Astros exec was fired.
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  15. #190
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Snatch Catch View Post
    Whoa, this whole thing is WILD. Hot damn.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/baseball/co...ent=t1_f838fp3
    I donít fully get the vibrating device thing (+ this reddit post). Wasnít it just that rival execs speculated that someone stealing signs MIGHT use something like this? What actually ties it to the Astros?

    A reddit post during the playoffs seems like a random coincidence. Everyone knew the Astros might be doing weird things and filming people back then, there was just no real proof yet, so any random person could have posted that.

  16. #191
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Jace View Post
    I don’t fully get the vibrating device thing (+ this reddit post). Wasn’t it just that rival execs speculated that someone stealing signs MIGHT use something like this? What actually ties it to the Astros?

    A reddit post during the playoffs seems like a random coincidence. Everyone knew the Astros might be doing weird things and filming people back then, there was just no real proof yet, so any random person could have posted that.
    Yesterday Sherman wrote:

    In recent days I have had scouts and executives talk to me about a variety of methods they think have been or could be employed, such as a realistic-looking electronic bandage placed on a player’s body that buzzes in real time to signal what is coming — one buzz for a fastball, for example — if the surveillance determines what type of pitching is coming.
    There's a hell of a lot of smoke on this now when looking back at that reddit post from last month before the whole thing broke. The first time the general public heard about the buzzer stuff was with Sherman, I believe. Whoever posted that is an MLB insider for sure, possibly even a player.
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  17. #192
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Snatch Catch View Post
    Yesterday Sherman wrote:



    There's a hell of a lot of smoke on this now when looking back at that reddit post from last month before the whole thing broke. The first time the general public heard about the buzzer stuff was with Sherman, I believe. Whoever posted that is an MLB insider for sure, possibly even a player.
    I dunno, to me that Sherman article sounds like people saying “if I was stealing signs with tech, this is what I’d do”. I just don’t get what the link to the Astros is, unlike the clear videos of the other crap they did.

    There’d have to be some real evidence or another source willing to go on record with their name about it.

  18. #193
    New Murderer's Row False1's Avatar
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Blazer View Post
    According to barstool that was posted the same day that Astros exec was fired.
    While that would be amazing in a way, it would also make that person an even more terrible human being. First, his actions taunting female reporters. Second, he stands idly by while his organization institutes a cheating scheme. Third, after the team foolishly tries to brush off his offensive comments from the aformentioned act - much to their own detriment - he comes back and anonymously throws gasoline on a fire.

  19. #194

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by billyhoyle View Post
    This is a great solution. And the NFL already set the precedent for this with the coach calling in plays to the defense via radio. This system was implemented right after the spygate scandal was uncovered.
    The Phil Hughes post was funny.

  20. #195
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Snatch Catch View Post
    Yesterday Sherman wrote:



    There's a hell of a lot of smoke on this now when looking back at that reddit post from last month before the whole thing broke. The first time the general public heard about the buzzer stuff was with Sherman, I believe. Whoever posted that is an MLB insider for sure, possibly even a player.
    The guy's reddit name has a TB logo. Charlie Morton would be a good guess as to who it is. Former Astro who currently plays for TB.

  21. #196

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Couldnít they have someone in bullpen or in seats FaceTime someone in clubhouse when they are on road?

  22. #197
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    It's insane. It's a lot worse than PED issue. To make the cheating work it means the whole team needs to cooperate (or at least all the positional players). It means all the players are cheating and could not use the 'I have no idea what I have taken' excuse.

    The advantage of knowing what pitches are coming is a lot bigger than taking PED.

  23. #198
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by THEBOSS84 View Post
    The guy's reddit name has a TB logo. Charlie Morton would be a good guess as to who it is. Former Astro who currently plays for TB.
    Whoever they are, they love Super Smash Bros and Radiohead.
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  24. #199
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    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    I've been pretty weirded out and really kind of disappointed by Fangraphs' coverage (really lack thereof) on this whole thing. They've done... zero articles on it. Literally written nothing, despite being a publication about baseball, and this being probably the biggest baseball story of the past week.

    There have been a couple podcasts, though... listening to them is making me wonder more why there is no written content. They basically amount to Ben Lindbergh dodging it, saying the Astros cheating is all too confusing for him and probably no big deal anyway. Sign stealing is as old as Jesus himself and even more storied, and besides old Wade Boggs said he didn't even want to know what pitch was coming! Who can predict those silly players' superstitions anyway, let's go watch the Mandalorian.

    They usually love all over the Astros analytically-minded organization, and hey their old friend Kevin Goldstein works there (who knew!), and hey we wouldn't mind job offers from MLB front offices so let's not jump to any conclusions here.

    Maybe they'll write something tomorrow instead of another piece reading 10 levels deep into a random 2-WAR player's 2019 stat line.

  25. #200

    Re: Astros cheating investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Jace View Post
    I've been pretty weirded out and really kind of disappointed by Fangraphs' coverage (really lack thereof) on this whole thing. They've done... zero articles on it. Literally written nothing, despite being a publication about baseball, and this being probably the biggest baseball story of the past week.

    There have been a couple podcasts, though... listening to them is making me wonder more why there is no written content. They basically amount to Ben Lindbergh dodging it, saying the Astros cheating is all too confusing for him and probably no big deal anyway. Sign stealing is as old as Jesus himself and even more storied, and besides old Wade Boggs said he didn't even want to know what pitch was coming! Who can predict those silly players' superstitions anyway, let's go watch the Mandalorian.

    They usually love all over the Astros analytically-minded organization, and hey their old friend Kevin Goldstein works there (who knew!), and hey we wouldn't mind job offers from MLB front offices so let's not jump to any conclusions here.

    Maybe they'll write something tomorrow instead of another piece reading 10 levels deep into a random 2-WAR player's 2019 stat line.
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