Since commissioner Rob Manfred and the MLB decided on the punishment levied against the Houston Astros for their sign-stealing scandal, there has been a steady level of criticism. Many have felt that the league didn’t go far enough with the extent of the punishment handed out to the Astros. That has already included many of the game’s best players, such as Mike Trout, Cody Bellinger, Aaron Judge, and Kris Bryant, among other voice their frustrations with the situation. It has now bled over into other realms of sports as Los Angeles Lakers star forward LeBron James has chimed with his opinion on the matter.
Criticism towards Astros’ punishment
It has been nothing short of a tumultuous last week for the MLB that has seen many prominent figures in the game blast the handling of the cheating scandal.
Many of the best players in the league have aimed at the lack of significant punishment towards the Astros. There are issues with the MLB not going far enough with what they decided to do that involved the lack of players disciplined or the possibility of the 2017 World Series title stripped from the organization.
That has become the crux of the entire backlash with players like Trout and Bellinger, each stating that the punishment handed out was weak. There is bewilderment stemming from no player suspended from their involvement in the matter that has impacted many teams and players’ careers.
The outrage has now expanded well out of the realm of baseball as it has seen the most prominent NBA player voice his frustrations with the matter.
LeBron James blasts Rob Manfred
The public criticism of Manfred and MLB has continued to extend around the league with much of the same sentiment being reached.
It has now included the four-time NBA MVP, who has been quite vocal over the last several years on various matters. James lent his platform to discuss his feelings on the subject on Tuesday, where he aired out that Manfred must listen to the players and eradicate the shortcomings on the disciplined handed out to the Astros.
James’ emotions on the issue are one that is shared by many players in the MLB as there is an overwhelming notion that they didn’t do enough. The output of criticism should more than indicate that the league office fell short in many ways. It’s something that won’t be fixed entirely given that the damage is done, but the punishment for such disappointing actions didn’t reach what many had hoped to unfold.
Rob Manfred, MLB’s failure to respond appropriately
Amid all the outpouring of criticism, Manfred has attempted to navigate through the entire process. However, it has been conducted poorly with his comments.
Manfred has made numerous statements that have left many baffled about his mindset regarding the entire matter. He voiced that the league decided not to punish players due to the backlash the players’ association would have. There is no telling if the MLB would be successful on that end, but the effort in trying to get that done would say much about where the league office stands on the entire situation.
Meanwhile, Manfred has stated that the public criticism and bashing is an extended part of the punishment that the Astros will face. In other words, he felt that there is no needed additional discipline given what the fans reaction has been to it all. Manfred also stated that the league felt that vacating the 2017 World Series title wouldn’t make a difference in how the Astros are now viewed.
During these comments, he also made the misstep of calling the World Series trophy “a piece of metal,” which demeaned one of the highest honor in the sport. It just further underlines the disappointing handling of the entire situation that has made this whole matter even more of a mess that has no end in sight.