Major League Baseball has concluded that the Houston Astros were not cheating when a team employee was taking cellphone photos of the visiting dugouts in Cleveland and Boston during their postseason games – they were actually monitoring the field to ensure that the Indians and the Red Sox weren’t violating rules.
MLB.com Executive Reporter Mark Feinsand tweeted the company’s official statement on the investigation, which reads:
"Before the Postseason began, a number of Clubs called the Commissioner's Office about sign stealing and the inappropriate use of video equipment. The concerns expressed related to a number of Clubs, not any one specific Club. In response to these calls, the Commissioner's Office reinforced the existing rules with all playoff Clubs and undertook proactive measures, including instituting a new prohibition on the use of certain in-stadium cameras, increasing the presence of operations and security personnel from Major League Baseball at all Postseason games and instituting a program of monitoring Club video rooms.
"With respect to both incidents regarding a Houston Astros employee, security identified an issue, addressed it and turned the matter over to the Department of Investigations. A thorough investigation concluded that an Astros employee was monitoring the field to ensure that the opposing Club was not violating any rules. All Clubs remaining in the playoffs have been notified to refrain from these types of efforts and to direct complaints about any in-stadium rules violations to MLB staff for investigation and resolution. We consider the matter closed."
Two people familiar with the situation said the Houston Astros attempted to get a second person next to Cleveland’s dugout during Game 3 of the AL Division Series after another man was removed earlier by security for taking pictures with his cellphone, the Associated Press reported earlier in the day Wednesday.
The second person tried to gain access to the field photographer’s pit but was turned away, said the people who spoke Wednesday to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter.
The Indians filed a complaint with Major League Baseball, which investigated Houston’s actions.
The same man, who had been issued a credential before the Oct. 8 game in Cleveland, was removed from an area near Boston’s dugout for taking photos during Game 1 of the ALCS on Saturday.
The Red Sox had been warned before their series-opening game, the AP was told by the people.
The Indians were concerned the man was attempting to view scouting reports Cleveland had on Houston’s players, one person said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.