Old Houston Astros Tweet About a 'Buzz in The Air' Resurfaces After Allegations Team Used Buzzer System In Cheating Scandal

The fallout from Major League Baseball's investigation into the Houston Astros 2017 sign-stealing scandal this week has stretched from Houston to Boston, by way of New York. The Astros are said to have stolen signs by using electronic devices, and buzzing the dugout so the signs could be relayed to players on the field.

Then on Thursday, an old Astros tweet from the second half of the 2018 season surfaced that uses the word "buzz."

The team tweeted on August 3, 2018, telling its followers "Good morning! #NeverSettle." The Astros followed up on that tweet with a video of Jose Altuve celebrating, and the team asked, "How's everybody doing?"

Another follow-up by the team is a video tweet of Carlos Correa tossing his bat into the air with the verbiage, "Just feels like there's a buzz in the air."

The MLB investigation began after former Astros player Mike Fiers came forward in November 2019 to say the team used electronic sign-stealing methods that violated Major League Baseball policy during that season's World Series championship run.

The sign-stealing scheme involved a video camera set up in centerfield, and videos of signals being recorded, decoded and sent to the dugout with a buzzing sound. The information was then relayed to hitters, who would know what pitch to expect.

MLB on Monday suspended Astros manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow for one season without pay, and former assistant GM Brandon Taubman is ineligible to perform any services for any other baseball club for the 2020 season. In addition, the Astros were fined $5 million and must forfeit its first- and second-round draft picks in both 2020 and 2021.

The bench coach during that season was Alex Cora, who went on to become manager of the Boston Red Sox. Carlos Beltran was a player on that 2017 Astros squad who became the manager of the New York Mets last offseason. On Monday, the Astros fired Hinch and Luhnow. On Tuesday night, the Red Sox fired Cora. Then on Thursday, the Mets parted ways with Beltran.

MLB also interviewed dozens of people and viewed video equipment, emails and inter-office communications, according to its report.

"During the investigation, the DOI interviewed 68 witnesses, including 23 current and former Astros players," the report read. "Some witnesses were interviewed multiple times. The DOI also reviewed tens of thousands of emails, Slack communications, text messages, video clips, and photographs. The Astros fully cooperated with the investigation, producing all requested electronic communications and making all requested employees available for interviews."

The fact that an Astros tweet in the 2018 season used the word "buzz" while showing one of its star players could have been merely an accident or an intentional, underhanded way to say the Astros were still using a cheating system to electronically steal signs.

The Astros made it to the playoffs again in 2018, and made it back to the World Series in 2019, when they lost to the Washington Nationals in seven games.

On Thursday, the Astros resigned star outfielder George Springer—the 2017 World Series MVP—to a one-year contract worth $21 million to avoid arbitration.

Houston Astros
The Houston Astros stand for the national anthem prior to Game Six of the 2019 World Series against the Washington Nationals at Minute Maid Park on October 29, 2019 in Houston, Texas. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images
Old Houston Astros Tweet About a 'Buzz in The Air' Resurfaces After Allegations Team Used Buzzer System In Cheating Scandal | Sports