Angels' Max Stassi apologizes for Astros' sign-stealing scheme

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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Max Stassi says he wishes he had done "the right thing" when he learned about the Houston Astros' sign-stealing scheme late in their World Series championship season in 2017.

The former Astros catcher's new teammates with the Los Angeles Angels also aren't happy with their AL West rivals as they report to spring training.

Stassi apologized for his minor part in the Astros' cheating after he was recalled by the club in August 2017. The catcher played in just 14 games that season and didn't participate in the postseason, yet still won a World Series title as part of their 40-man roster.

"You apologize to those around the game, the people that were affected by it," Stassi said Wednesday. "The fans, coaches, especially the kids who look up to us. You're supposed to set an example and do the right thing, and we didn't do that."

Stassi said he was "surprised" to learn the extent of the Astros' schemes when he joined the club late in the season. He also said he was unaware of any sign-stealing by the Astros in subsequent seasons.

"It was wrong," Stassi said. "I feel terrible. I think looking back, every single person that was a part of that team or in that clubhouse regrets what was going on, and if we could all go back, I'm sure we never even would have thought of the idea."

Angels left-hander Andrew Heaney and right-hander Taylor Cole ripped the Astros when the Angels' pitchers and catchers reported to spring training Wednesday. Heaney was profanely vehement in his criticisms of the Astros' actions and their response after being caught.

"They sure ... need to do more than what they already did," Heaney said. "That was terrible. I understand they are going to go get their (story) in order and they are going to have their thing to say, and they are going to hide behind the commissioner's report and whatever, but I don't think that's good enough."