A lawyer for the Boston Red Sox said in a court hearing Friday morning that players on the team and the club’s management did not engage in an electronic sign-stealing campaign.
Lawyer Lauren Moskowitz, who is representing the team in a class-action suit brought by an online bettor, said they were not prepared to admit they violated sign-stealing rules when asked by a Manhattan federal court judge in the telephone conference.
“You’re not saying the Red Sox didn’t violate those rules, are you?” Judge Jed Rakoff asked Moskowitz, referring to the club’s alleged electronic sign stealing that dates back to 2017.
“Do you admit that the Red Sox violated the rules?” Rakoff added.
“We do not admit that,” Moskowitz responded.
“The commissioner of baseball was just off base, in your view,” Rakoff said.
The MLB is currently investigating the Red Sox for allegedly using a camera to steal signs opposing teams’ catchers were sending to pitchers.
In 2017, MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred fined the Sox for using Apple watches to relay the information captured on camera to players on the field.
In a memo to 30 teams later that year, Manfred warned future electronic sign stealing would result in stiff penalties, including loss of draft picks.
MLB rules do not prohibit stealing signs, but using electronics to do so is not allowed.
In the class-action suit, the Draftkings bettor alleges the MLB, the Red Sox and the Astros created an unfair gambling platform by turning a blind eye to the sign-stealing scandal.
The plaintiff in the case, Kristopher Olson, placed at least 226 DraftKings fantasy baseball bets from 2017 to 2019.