Former Houston Astros pitcher Ken Giles says he’s prepared to pay a hefty price for the sign stealing scandal involving his old team. Giles, who is currently with the Toronto Blue Jays, said in a recent interview he’s willing to give back his 2017 World Series championship ring.
Giles told the Toronto Star that he would return the championship jewelry if Major League Baseball asked. “Whatever they ask, I would oblige,” Giles said. “Because what was going on at the time was not OK.”
MLB found the Astros used technology to steal signs during the 2017 and 2018 seasons — the former of which ended in a World Series title for the team. Giles led the team in saves in 2017, but unraveled in the postseason that year. He said he didn’t know about the cheating.
“I was not aware about anything,” Giles said. “It crushed me to learn about the stuff that went on when I was there. I had no idea. I had no clue whatsoever. I was blindsided by the commissioner’s report. Up until then, I honestly didn’t believe it.”
Giles is the second player who said he would be willing to hand over their championship ring. Former Astros pitcher Mike Fiers, who blew the whistle on the scandal, is the first.
The league concluded the Astros illegally used video footage to steal signs from opposing pitchers and catchers and alerted their own batters about what pitch was coming by banging on a trash can. MLB handed a one-year suspension to general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch, who were both fired by the team. The Astros will also pay a $5 million penalty and forfeit their first and second-round picks in 2020 and 2021.
Critics called the punishment too lenient. No players were disciplined for their actions and the team retained their championship title. Officials and players were also criticized for their apology at the start of spring training, which seemed to show a lack of remorse.