Was the Astros' efforts to address the team's sign-stealing scandal, headed by owner Jim Crane, completely bungled? Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Astros held a press conference on Thursday to finally address cheating their way to a World Series title in 2017, and to say it did not go well would be an enormous understatement.

Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve expressed remorse over their roles in the sign-stealing scandal by issuing very brief statements. They took no questions but did speak with reporters in the locker room after. The real highlight of the media event, however, was when Jim Crane spoke. The Astros initially told reporters he does not believe the elaborate sign-stealing scheme had any impact on the outcome of games. Crane then immediately flip-flopped.

When pressed with several follow-up questions, Crane reluctantly admitted that it would be possible for batters knowing which pitch was coming to have an impact on the outcome of a game.

As you might expect, Crane’s comments did not go over well. He was ripped and ridiculed by people all over the sports world, including some current MLB players.

The Astros would have been better off saying nothing at all and moving on to the 2020 season. Their press conference was cringeworthy on so many levels, especially if you heard Bregman’s initial thoughts on the scandal a month ago. Crane claiming the cheating had no impact on games was truly surreal.

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.


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