WSJ report: Intern started Astros ‘CodeBreaking’ program

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

According to the Wall Street Journal, the person behind the Houston Astros sign-cheating scandal was an intern at the time. Derek Vigoa is the man behind the scandal that has rocked baseball.

Vigoa is currently still employed by the Astros, as their Senior Manager of Team Operations. He allegedly told investigators that he thought former general manager Jeff Luhnow knew about the “Codebreaker” system that was set up.

Baseball (Photo by Pixabay)

The report said that the system was introduced in September 2016. It was then used during the 2017 season and part of the 2018 season.

It is not clear when the program was stopped in 2018. In 2017, the Astros won the Word Series defeating the Los Angeles Dodgers to win the first World Series Championship in team history.

Due to the MLB investigation, Luhnow and A.J. Hinch lost their jobs. Also, both men were suspended for the 2020 season due to the scandal that the Astros were involved in.

Vigoa had a computer application that helped decode the pitches. The application was mainly used at Minute Maid Park and occasionally on the road.

Through the application, staff members would enter the pitchers signs into an Excel-sheet. Then, “codebreaker” would go to work to determine which pitch the pitcher was attempting to throw.

Once the pitch was decoded, the message would then be elated to the hitter. Eventually, the story said that staff members would bang on trash cans to get the message across to the hitter.

It was previously reported that the Astros would bang on trash cans for fast balls. But when an off-speed pitch was coming, there was no bang.

Tom Koch-Weser — who is the Astros Director of Advance Information — claims that he thought Luhnow knew about the system that was previously in place. Koch-Weser told MLB investigators that Luhnow would “go to the Astros’ video room during road games and allegedly say “You guys Codebreaking?”

Luhnow refuses to comment on the story. But he allegedly denied the claims to Major League Baseball.

MLB allegedly found no evidence that Luhnow about the CodeBreaking that was going on.

While Luhnow refused for comment, Hinch did an interview with MLB Network on Friday.

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