Last week, Major League Baseball punished the Astros for illegally stealing signs during their 2017 World Series championship season. Manager A.J. Hinch and GM Jeff Luhnow were suspended one year (and later fired), and the team has to forfeit four high draft picks, among other things.

The Astros held their annual FanFest event at Minute Maid Park over the weekend and players in attendance were hardly contrite. Alex Bregman ducked questions about the scandal and Jose Altuve shot back by saying the Astros will go back to the World Series this year, which they very well might, because they’re still a great team.

Still, one would think an apology is in order at some point. It sounds like that point will be spring training. Tuesday night Astros owner Jim Crane told reporters, including Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle, the team plans to get the players together and issue an apology in spring training. From Rome:

“When we get down to spring training, we’ll all get them together and they’ll come out with a strong statement as a team and, I think, apologize for what happened and move forward,” Crane said Tuesday prior to the Houston Sports Awards.

Crane said the players who’ve spoken have been “holding back a bit” and are apparently awaiting spring training to formulate a response.

“Everyone is split up. It’s a team,” Crane said. “We’re going to sit in a room and talk about it, then we’ll come out and address the press. All of them will address the press, either as a group or individually. Quite frankly, we’ll apologize for what happened, ask for forgiveness and move forward.”

Nothing says “we’re sincerely sorry” like waiting a month to issue an apology for a cheating scandal that spanned multiple years. The Astros have been largely unapologetic about the scandal, even defiant at times, so I guess a late apology is better than no apology.

Commissioner Rob Manfred issued a nine-page report detailing MLB’s investigation into the Astros and concluded the sign-stealing scheme was “player-driven.” Alex Cora and Carlos Beltran have also lost their managing jobs because of the scandal.


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