Sports Q

Sports Q: Should the 2017 Astros have to vacate their World Series title?

The threat of it would be fun, just to watch them squirm.

In this 2017 file photo, the Houston Astros celebrate their World Series championship in Los Angeles. AP Photo/Alex Gallardo, File

Welcome to’s Sports Q, our daily conversation, initiated by you and moderated by Chad Finn, about a compelling topic in Boston sports. Here’s how it works: You submit questions to Chad through TwitterFacebook, and email. He’ll pick one each weekday to answer, then we’ll take the discussion to the comments. Chad will stop by several times per day to navigate. But you drive the conversation. 

Hi Chad – When MLB released its report about the Astros cheating scandal, I thought the suggestion that they should have to give back their World Series was crazy. But I have to admit, after more news about what they were up to has trickled out the past couple of weeks, and then seeing their smug half-hearted apologies in that press conference today, I kind of think they should. These guys deserve the hammer, and there’s nothing bigger that can be taken away from them than that. What do you think? – Bill G.


Bill, as smug, arrogant, patronizing, unapologetic (in any authentic way), vague, condescending, remorseless, and tone-deaf that the Astros remain (especially owner Jim Crane), taking away the World Series would still be several steps too far.

The threat of it would be fun, just to watch them squirm. But in reality? There’s no way MLB would ever do it, because they know the truth: This is a lot more widespread than the Astros and, apparently to a lesser degree, the Red Sox. There’s going to be more stuff that comes out on the Astros, but there will be more around MLB as well, as desperate as Rob Manfred (does this guy even like baseball?) is to make it go away.

The Yankees deserve further investigation based on the fact that Carlos Beltran and Brian McCann (who allegedly told Beltran to knock it off to no avail) were on their roster before they went to Houston. Beltran reportedly told the Astros they were behind the times in sign stealing when he got there. Well, who exactly was up with the times? I bet whomever it was wore pinstripes.

The Dodgers have a legitimate beef about how that World Series went down, and perhaps they do with the loss to the Sox, too. But they were accused of sign stealing in the 2018 NLCS by the Brewers. Are we sure they’re clean? Vacating a World Series opens up a lot more questions that MLB doesn’t want to face.


Besides, the Astros are getting plenty of comeuppance. Everything Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve have achieved is under suspicion. Opposing players now loathe them. More ex-Astros will speak up in the future, even if they don’t have the courage Mike Fiers had. Jim Crane looks like a buffoon. The only one associated with that franchise that showed any grace Wednesday  — save for perhaps Carlos Correa, who seemed contrite — was Dusty Baker. And he’s only there because A.J. Hinch lost his job over this.

No, the Astros should not lose their 2018 title over this. But Sports Illustrated should re-run that famous cover that predicted that they’d be 2017 champs with a red rubber champ that says CHEATED. The Astros can keep their rings. But their respect and reputation is gone. That’s enough.

But what does everyone else think? Should the Astros have to vacate the 2017 World Series? I’ll hear you in the comments.


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