Have the Toronto Blue Jays been stealing signals?
I generally do not comment on this kind of stories, but the Toronto Blue Jays stealing signals scandal is starting to grow some legs. That four letter network has an in depth look at what has been going on in Toronto. They are saying that four MLB players saw a man situated in Center Field signaling Blue Jays’ batters about off speed pitches. There are also reports that Jose Bautista got a message from a certain MLB player that the Jays should knock it off. I assume that most baseball teams try to steal signals, but having a guy in the stands doing it for them seems out of bounds.
Of course we have no tangible proof that this is going on. We have a lot of smoke, and where there is smoke there is usually fire. Many folks are using the Jays OPS numbers to suggest that they have an unfair advantage at home. OPS is On base percentage plus Slugging percentage and yes baseball has a lot of numbers and sometimes not everyone knows exactly what they mean. However, when we look at these numbers the Jays do far better at the plate when playing in Rogers Centre.
For example Yunel Escobar has an OPS of .699 in road games this year. At home that number jumps to .957. That is a very large increase. However, since the road games encompass all of the parks the team has played in, and the home numbers are for games at Rogers Center alone, I wonder if that is a fair comparison. I would like to see the numbers broken down by park before I jump to any hasty conclusions.
With that being said this certainly does not look good, but in an instant gratification society let’s take a moment and really ferret this one out.