CHICAGO — Brian Cashman isn’t taking advice from Jim Crane. The Yankees GM said Crane, the Astros owner, was deflecting when he made comments to USA Today that he should be quiet about the Astros cheating scandal being what has kept the Bombers from a World Series.
“I don’t think anybody’s gonna dance to the tune he’s singing, to be quite honest,” Cashman said Thursday night before the Yankees took on the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. “I’d say it’s called deflection and him trying to equate probably an equivalent of a parking ticket to maybe 162 felonies. I don’t think anybody’s gonna buy into any of that stuff.”
Crane was responding to Cashman’s comments in spring training that the Astros’ cheating scandal — which cost the team $5 million, years of draft picks and their GM and manager — cost the Yankees a chance at a World Series appearance in 2017. Crane also talked about “The Yankee Letter,” which revealed the club was fined $100,000 for illegal use of their replay room in 2015 and 2016, before the rules that the Astros were punished for were explicitly laid out by the league.
“I found his comments to be extremely strange,’’ Crane told Bob Nightengale in an interview. “There’s the letter, and you were doing it, too. You were there dude. What are you talking about? If I was one of the teams, and I knew our team was doing it [cheating], I’d keep my mouth shut and just go about our business. But listen, I can only control what’s going on here. I can’t control what the other guys do.’’
The Astros were caught using the replay room to steal signs and relay them to batters in real time during the 2017 season. The Yankees used their replay room to steal signs and relay them to a runner on second base, who could in turn relay them. The rule the Astros were caught violating was a result of the Yankees investigation, which gave commissioner Rob Manfred a chance to set the law and increase the punishment.
Cashman pointed out the league obviously did not see the violations as equivalent, citing the differences in punishments. He said the reaction within the industry has made it clear they are not the same as well.
“They lost multiple years of first round draft picks, they were fined millions of dollars and decided to fire their manager and general manager because of their actions,” Cashman said. “There’s no equivalent to any of it. So that’s why I said it’s a deflection. And no one’s buying it.”
The Yankees were the first team into the visitors clubhouse at Guaranteed Rate Field after the Guardians, who had a COVID-19 outbreak among their staff while here earlier this week. The White Sox assured the Yankees, however, that the rooms were clean.
“They came in and overnight, you know, did a deep clean and everything,” Aaron Boone said. “I know we brought more of our clubhouse staff that’s kind of handling a lot of the stuff with us.”
Guardians manager Terry Francona and several on his staff tested positive on Wednesday and the final game of the series between the two teams was canceled.
SITTING THE HOT HAND
After driving in all five of the Yankees runs on Wednesday, Gleyber Torres was on the bench to start the series with the White Sox Thursday. Boone said it was one of the days he had planned to give the second baseman off.
“I’m just kind of looking at the weekend and the week ahead and this one (game) made the most sense,” Boone said. “I’ll probably give a few guys on this road trip a day or a couple DH days… But I felt like this one with how they have the rotation set is how I wanted to get into that.”
Isiah Kiner-Falefa was also not in the starting lineup Thursday because Boone wanted to give him a rest.