Major League Baseball announced Monday that the league has concluded its investigation into the Cardinals’ illegal hacking of the Astros’ internal database. The league sanctioned St. Louis in three ways:
- Chris Correa, the Cardinals’ former scouting director at the center of the scandal, will be placed on the permanently ineligible list effective immediately.
- The Cardinals’ two highest available selections in the 2017 First-Year Player Draft (their 2nd-round selection [pick no. 56] and Competitive Balance Round B selection [pick no. 75]) will be awarded to the Astros.
- The Cardinals will pay the Astros the sum of $2 million within 30 days.
Correa’s ban from baseball comes as no surprise, though the lack of precedent for this type of case led many to wonder about the competitive penalties St. Louis would face. The Cardinals already forfeited their first-round selection to sign Dexter Fowler, meaning that their first three picks in the draft are now vacated. St. Louis will now pick first at No. 94, in the third round.
Houston will select five of the first 91 players in the draft, selecting at Nos. 15, 53, 56, 75 and 91. The club will also receive the allotted pool money for the gained picks, along with the $2 million fine.
In the release, the league also noted the following:
- The evidence that no Cardinals’ employee other than Correa intruded into the Astros’ systems.
- The Cardinals are held responsible by Commissioner Rob Manfred for the incident, as well as held “vicariously liable” for Correa’s misconduct.
- The Astros “suffered material harm” as a result of Correa’s conduct, and suffered substantial negative publicity as a result.
- Correa declined to answer any questions or provide any cooperation in the league’s investigation.
Correa is currently in the midst of a 46-month federal prison sentence for his role in the incident, which was discovered in June 2015.