Per Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times, the L.A. City Council will vote within the next week on a resolution urging Major League Baseball to award the Dodgers the 2017 and ’18 World Series which were won by the Astros and Red Sox over the Dodgers, respectively.
Major League Baseball recently released a report based on its investigation into a technologically-aided sign-stealing scheme by the Astros in 2017. As a result, it suspended GM Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch for one year, fined the team $5 million, and took away its first- and second-round draft picks for the next two seasons. The Astros soon thereafter fired Luhnow and Hinch. MLB’s investigation into a similar scheme by the ’18 Red Sox is ongoing.
Councilman Gil Cedillo said, “This is an equity and justice thing. Who was the best team in 2017? Who was the best team in 2018? It was the Dodgers. They got beat by teams that were cheating.” Cedillo added, “Do they need to be told that they shouldn’t have a title?”
While vacating the ’17 and ’18 championships based on the league’s investigations is an understandable albeit unrealistic suggestion, awarding the Dodgers both championships is a bridge too far. The Astros certainly cheated and the Red Sox almost certainly did as well, but that doesn’t mean the Dodgers would have otherwise won. It is impossible to know and, thus, a pointless exercise.
Besides, if you’re a member of the ’17 and/or ’18 Dodgers or a fan of the team, wouldn’t it be anticlimactic to win a championship this way? No celebratory mobbing on the field after the final out. A parade (or two) three years late. Anachronistic t-shirts and hats. Blech.
The most realistic thing baseball fans can do is to have an understanding of this moment in time and affix to it any necessary personal meaning, not unlike the steroid era, the dead ball era, or the pre-integration era.