It’s easy to forget just how many players lives were changed by the Astros’ cheating. The Dodgers, in particular, had several guys on their team that really took a hit. But perhaps none more so than Andre Ethier.
Now approaching two years into retirement, the long-time Dodgers outfielder interviewed with Jon Weisman to discuss how he felt about the Astros 2017 campaign, and what he thought about proper punishments. You can read the full story here.
My dinner-time chat with Andre … https://t.co/UoDOuLQibT
— Jon Weisman (@jonweisman) February 19, 2020
Above all else, the takeaway from the brief phone call seems to be the Ethier does not try to think about what could have been. He does not sit and reflect on what might have happened if the Astros did not cheat, and certainly does not think there’s a guarantee the Dodgers win it all.
Do you feel cheated? Yes. But screw that. I can still beat these guys whether they’re doing that or not. That’s the mentality I would take when I would go out there and play every day. Did it affect at bats? Yes. Did it affect games? Most likely. Do we know if that all added up to effect the entirety of a series. We will never know … We’ll never actually know until they actually come clean and say what the reason is.
Ethier played 12 magical seasons in Los Angeles, becoming a fan-favorite almost immediately. As it happened to work out, his very last at-bat in baseball came against the Astros in game 7 of the World Series. Ethier hit a base hit to right that knocked in the only run of the game for the Dodgers.
Enter to Win a Justin Turner Signed Bat!
Did their cheating lead to his retirement? Probably not. After all, Ethier had played just one month of the season due to injuries.
It’s tough for any baseball player. You play professional baseball 16 years and one team for 12 years. … All of a sudden, not by your choice, it’s just over after one game.
Although that was his last game, Ethier did not actually announce his retirement until the Summer of 2018. He was not ready to give the game up, but was understanding that there was not a place for him on the Dodgers’ roster as well.
It’s definitely a tough transition, finding your footing, finding your place, but when you have solid people behind you — your family and friends — and you have solid support from the Dodgers’ front office guys and players, making you feel a part of it, that makes it so easy, I thank them so much for making me feel a part of it.
And now here we are. More than two years removed from his last game and caught in the scandal that is the Houston Astros. While Ethier is not a fan of how the team was punished, he also knows that this is on more than Major League Baseball to fix.
I know MLB’s hands are tied now…I think our union could do a great job of setting precedent and taking action. If MLB’s not (going to do it), why not stand up for the 400-500 other players around the league?
Ethier went on to say that players maybe should bot receive suspensions, but rather have them participate in more youth programs around the country. Not a bad idea.