LeBron James rips Rob Manfred over Astros’ sign-stealing scandal: ‘You need to fix this’

The Astros’ sign-stealing scandal has made huge waves in MLB in recent weeks as players continue to criticize commissioner Rob Manfred and the way he handled the situation. The story’s reached the point that players in other sports are taking notice, with NBA superstar LeBron James weighing in via Twitter on Tuesday.

The Astros, of course, won the World Series in 2017, a season they cheated by relaying signs through trashcan banging and other means. MLB punished members of the club’s front office and docked draft picks, but players were not reprimanded nor was their championship stripped.

James’ comments are more negative publicity for Manfred, who has become an unpopular MLB figure amid this scandal. 

Earlier this week, Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner went took on Manfred by name after the commissioner referenced the Astros’ 2017 World Series trophy —​ which is called the Commissioner’s Trophy —​ as “a piece of metal.”

Atlanta Braves veteran outfielder Nick Markakis, who’s long been one of baseball’s quietest players, didn’t hold back his frustration.

“To see something like that, it’s damaging to baseball. It’s anger. I feel like every single guy over there needs a beating,” Markakis told reporters Tuesday morning as he reported to spring training.

“I know as players we do not agree with what they did. We don’t stand behind them and never will we support them for their actions. I think they got off pretty easy. They are going to be able to go out there and compete with no ramifications at all,” Markakis said of the lack of punishment for players. “I think the commissioner completely handed it the wrong way, but that’s the way he did it. That’s the way we got to live with it. I know a lot of people disagree with him. The way he handled the situation he should be embarrassed of himself.”

Even Mike Trout, the game’s brightest, albeit often dullest and least quotable star, voiced displeasure over the lack of punishment for the Houston players.

“I don’t agree with the punishments, the players not getting anything,” Trout said. “It was a player-driven thing. It sucks, too, because guys’ careers have been affected, a lot of people lost jobs. It was tough.”

And now the controversy has caught the attention of the NBA’s most well-known player. Manfred’s made it a point of emphasis to bring more attention to the game of baseball, but this likely isn’t what he had in mind, and it seems like it’s going to keep coming for the foreseeable future.

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