Five years in prison, fines of over $250,000, and restitution–all are punishments in front of former St. Louis Cardinals Scouting Director Chris Correa, who plead guilty and was indicted on Friday of five counts of unauthorized access to computer information. A sentencing hearing will be held on April 11th.
In the meantime, it remains to be seen how Commissioner Rob Manfred may respond in terms of discipline. The Major League Baseball Constitution lists punitive actions such as reprimand, fines, suspensions, and deprivation at MLB meetings among the actions which can be handed down. MLB did issue the following statement following Correa’s indictment.
“Major League Baseball appreciates the efforts of federal law enforcement authorities in investigating the illegal breach of the Astros’ baseball operations database, and identifying the perpetrator of this crime. We anticipate that the authorities will share with us the results of their investigation at the appropriate time, and we will determine what further actions to take after receiving all the relevant information.”
The singular language of “perpetrator” is interesting to note in the above statement, as it implies that Correa is the lone individual involved in this incident. But as noted in the conversation with the Houston Chronicle’s David Barron, who was in the courtroom covering the hearing on Friday, after Correa stated he did find St. Louis Cardinals information in the Houston Astros database, he was asked what he did with it.
“He said basically that he told his co-workers,” shared Barron. “It was one of those questions that was sort of left dangling out there because the judge did not pursue it.”
“I did not get the impression that this will lead to another round of charges or another round of investigation,” added Barron. “The initial phrase the US Attorney for the Southern District of Texas used was ‘this wraps an investigation that began’ etc, etc. So I got the impression that once the sentencing guidelines take place…the case is over and done with. And the Astros made the point that no one from the Cardinals has accused them of stealing information from them.”
The Cardinals issued a statement “because the court proceedings in this matter will not be completed until Mr. Correa’s sentencing, we have been advised that it would be inappropriate to comment at this time.”
No one else associated with the Cardinals organization has been charged.