How An Astros 2020 World Series Title Could Wash Away Their Cheating Scandal

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The Houston Astros punched their ticket to the ALCS yesterday, and fans have no clue how to feel. Their World Series title in 2017 has been completely vacated in the minds of some fans. Would winning this year validate them? We might have no choice but to give them their flowers if they win this year’s World Series.

When they finished with a losing record in the regular season (29-31), we realized that Carlos Correa and the Astros were who we always thought they were. Until they weren’t. Suddenly, Houston flipped a switch, dismantling the Minnesota Twins (for whatever that’s worth) and then annihilating the Oakland Athletics. That’s a division leading (36-24) Oakland squad that everyone, especially Vegas, favored.

We assumed pulling the plug on their cheating operation would turn their playoff success into a dud, but it hasn’t. Maybe they were an excellent team that used cheating to find separation with the Dodgers? Their regular season averages plummeted like we expected, yet they’re monstrous in the 2020 postseason.

Carlos Correa continues to be the most outspoken Astro of them all, and his play is unfortunately backing that up. When you hit two homers in two different ALDS games, you get to speak on it.

Will fans forgive them?

If Houston wins the World Series, we should give them credit for being a World Series team. Their title this year would validate what they accomplished three years ago, even if some fans disagree. A major snag for the Astros is how they’re handling the media. Embracing the punk mentality and popping off when they were the ones that cheated doesn’t sit right with many audiences.

Sometimes apologizing and letting fans breathe gives you the opportunity to earn your stripes back. Alex Bregman is a perfect example of this approach. He hasn’t said much since the scandal. With players like Correa running their mouths, all they’re doing now is making opposing fan bases more reluctant to give ’em their due.

Nobody wanted the Houston Astros to be good this year, but it’s a reality we can’t deny. They took a coach in Dusty Baker that was just shoved out the door by the Nationals. They lost a Cy Young runner-up in Gerrit Cole (who should have won) and replaced him with young farm system arms. They also lost a Cy Young winner in Justin Verlander, who has undergone Tommy John surgery. And still the Astros sprinted into the ALCS like it was nothing.

Four straight ALCS berths just might mean they’re better than we thought they were. It’s human nature to blame the opponents for choking, but the Astros are getting the same results regardless of cheating.

Yankees/Rays Game 5 is on tonight, and most of us are hoping for Gerrit Cole to earn his contract. A Yankees victory might be the only way for upset fans to rain on the Houston parade.

Written by Gary Sheffield, Jr

Gary Sheffield Jr is the son of should-be MLB Hall of Famer, Gary Sheffield. He covers basketball and baseball for, chats with the Purple and Gold faithful on LakersNation, and shitposts on Twitter. You can follow him at GarySheffieldJr


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  1. Patriots are hated for being the champion of champions. The Astricos are hated because they’re cheaters who got mad when people were angry at them for cheating. Coincidentally, Astricos hitting numbers are SIGNIFICANTLY down across the board this year. Especially the “little person” at 2b. Not to mention they finished below .500 in the weakest division in the AL (arguably the MLB).

    If a god really does exist, he purposely gave them the easiest postseason schedule thus far so a team that deserves to punch them in the mouth does.

    • Because they all practice Selective Memory. They simply choose NOT to remember that the Dodgers, Yankees, and Red Sox all cheated by sign stealing, but it was the Astros that became MLB’s scapegoat. Can’t touch the Yankees or Dodgers, no sir-ee.

      They also simply choose NOT to remember that the Astros have made it to 4 straight ALCS series, choosing to remember only this season and ascribing the bad batting averages to the lack of cheating. This, of course, ignores the previous two seasons of production at the plate. Oh, and with the Extra Added Bonus of a host of MLB spies hanging around for one of those seasons and poking into everything.

      In short, the Astros are the repository of all blame. Thus the scorn and hatred. It would do my heart glad to see them win it all, just so Carlos Correa can hoist the Trophy in one hand, and flip the bird to the rest of the League and commentariat with the other. Both would be well deserved…

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