Another MLB player chimed in about the Houston Astros cheating scandal. He’s also taking it personally.
Royals second baseman Whit Merrifield said he believes the illicit sign-stealing operation cost him a spot in the 2018 All-Star Game.
“I’m going to consider myself an All-Star (for that year) with all this stuff that’s come out,” Merrifield said in an interview with Clubhouse Conversation. “Because MLB player: Astros cheating kept me from being All Star that game. We’ll put an asterisk by 2018. And on top of it, we’ll go ahead and throw in a silver slugger for good measure.”
Altuve, who has been one of the players at the center of the allegations, received the most votes among fans for that year’s mid-summer classic, making him the starter at second base. Gleyber Torres and Jed Lowrie were the junior circuit’s reserves that year.
Altuve also won the Silver Slugger award — his fifth straight — after the 2018 season.
MLB’s investigation, which led to the firings of general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager AJ Hinch, focused on the cheating during their World Series run in 2017.
Prior to the All-Star Game in 2018, Altuve hit .332/.394/.470 with 44 RBI and 14 stolen bases. Merrifield, meanwhile, batted .307/.378/.434 with five homers and 30 RBI.
Merrifield made his first All-Star team last season, when he led the major leagues in hits.