Yankees manager Joe Girardi has leveled accusations in recent days that division rival the Toronto Blue Jays "could be" stealing signs using illegal methods: “Signs are coveted. Anywhere you play in the game you have to protect your signs. Sometimes we have inclinations that things might be happening at certain ballparks and we’re aware of it and we try to protect our signs. The last thing you want is the hitter to know what’s coming.” Could Girardi just be sore that the Jays beat the Yankees by a combined score of 23-8 in two games in a row, or are the Jays the New England Patriots of the MLB?
As former player Bert Blyleven has pointed out, stealing signs has long been a part of the game, an accusation that has been leveled at A-Rod, among many others—but there are certain unwritten codes as to how it's done, and one big no-no is using off-the-field equipment or binoculars. Girardi agrees that a runner at second relaying signs is within the code of the game, but he and Yankees catcher Russell Martin think the Jays had to have been using outside methods during Thursday and Friday night's games, during certain plays when no one was on base.
Blue Jays manager John Farrell denied the accusations, pointing at Toronto’s 21-22 home mark as evidence: “Honestly, I don’t have any idea what (Girardi’s) comment would be stemming from. We play this game to compete and prepare every day and we don’t look to any other means than what takes place in between the lines.” Coming so soon after reports of Canada's shocking and culturally-insensitive indifference to Harvard, could this feud spark Canadians to deploy more of their troops to flood our parks and enrage Andrea Peyser?