On Monday, ESPN televised a Cactus League game between the Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Angels. While it's safe to ignore almost everything that happens during spring training, this particular contest featured a neat wrinkle: several players, including Anthony Rizzo, wore microphones and interacted with the broadcast booth throughout the game.
Given the combination of Rizzo's personality and a hot mic, there was a fair chance of him saying something notable … like, say, about the Houston Astros' sign-stealing scandal. Yes, folks, Rizzo cracked wise about the story of the offseason.
Take a look and a listen:
For those who prefer to read, here's a transcript of the sequence:
Rizzo: "I'm doing some math in my head about what he's going to throw."
Jessica Mendoza: "What do you got?"
Rizzo: "I have no idea. I wish I knew… someone bang for me."
Rizzo is making light of the Astros' technological misconduct. The operation began in 2017, with the Astros using an illegal live feed to crack the opposition's signs. They would then signal to the batter's box what pitch was coming by banging on a trash can (or not).
That story broke in November after Oakland Athletics pitcher Mike Fiers went public with information about the scheme. A league investigation resulted in the Astros being stripped of two draft picks and fined $5 million in January. The Astros also fired general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch after each was suspended for the season. In recent weeks, more information has surfaced that counters commissioner Rob Manfred's report and assertion that the sign-stealing operation was "player-driven," as there is evidence that t .
The Boston Red Sox remain under investigation by MLB for improper use of video during the 2018 season. The Red Sox parted ways with manager Alex Cora -- the Astros bench coach in 2018 -- earlier this year. The New York Mets also split ties with manager Carlos Beltran for his involvement in the Astros' scandal. Beltran had not managed so much as an exhibition contest before being forced out.