CHICAGO – Chicago White Sox reliever Ryan Tepera hinted that the Houston Astros may have stolen signals in the first two games of the AL Division Series after Chicago won Game 3 on Sunday night.
The Astros were looking for the sweep after two impressive home wins. But his batters struck out 16 times as they fell 12-6 at Chicago. They had struck out a total of 16 times in the first two games. The champions of the Western division were removed in order in each of the last five innings.
Tepera, who pitched two perfect innings, highlighted the difference between the home and road Astros.
“Well yes. It is what it is. Of course they have a reputation for doing certain strange things at home,” he said. “Let’s just say you can tell a bit of a difference. I think you guys could see the swings that missed tonight as opposed to the first two games at Minute Maid. But that’s not the main story. We came to play, we came to compete. We are going to do our best thinking about what they will do. “
“We have to execute the launches and that they cannot connect,” he added.
Game four of the series was played Monday in Chicago, but rain was forecast.
The Astros were sanctioned by the Major Leagues after verifying that they stole the signals of the rivals during the 2017 campaign in which they were consecrated World Series champions and also in the 2018 campaign.
The MLB investigation found that Houston used video transmission originating from a center field camera to decipher signals from the opposing receiver during home games. Astros players hit a trash can to let hitters know what was going to be thrown, improving the chance of landing a hit.
Manager AJ Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow were fired in the wake of the scandal, but neither player was sanctioned after commissioner Rob Manfred granted them immunity as part of the MLB investigation.
Stealing signals is legal and part of baseball tradition as long as it is caught with the naked eye – for example by the runner at second base. The use of technology is prohibited.