NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Watchgate has resulted in fines for both the Red Sox and Yankees.
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred announced Friday he has fined the Red Sox an undisclosed amount for participating in a scheme to relay pitching signs against the Yankees using an Apple Watch. The money will be donated to hurricane relief efforts in Florida, Manfred said.
MLB began investigating last month after Yankees general manager Brian Cashman filed a compliant that included video shot of the Red Sox dugout during a three-game series in Boston. When contacted by the commissioner’s office, the Red Sox admitted that their trainers had been relaying information from video personnel to players. They insisted manager John Farrell, general manager Dave Dombrowski and other front-office officials had no advanced knowledge of the sign stealing.
The Red Sox responded by filing a complaint of their own against the Yankees, claiming the team used a camera from its YES television network to steal signs. Manfred said Friday his office found insufficient evidence to support that claim but that the investigation did reveal that in “an earlier championship season” the Yankees illegally used a dugout phone. Although no team filed a complaint and the subject of the conversation itself did not violate any rules, MLB moved to fine the Yankees, too, because such use of the phone is prohibited, Manfred said.
The Yankees’ last championship season was 2009.
Manfred also did not disclose how much he fined the Yankees but said it is less than what the Red Sox are paying. The Yankees’ fine, too, will be donated to hurricane relief efforts.
Separately Friday, the Yankees announced they were donating $500,000 to Hurricane Irma relief — $250,000 to the Red Cross and $250,000 to the Salvation Army.
Baseball does not have any rules against teams trying to decode pitching signs, but it does outlaw the use of electronic devices to aid in the practice.
In response to the Red Sox-Yankees situation, Manfred said he has issued warnings to all 30 major league teams.