Executive Rewind: The Houston Astros Tone Deaf Owner

You probably heard by now that the American League’s Houston Astros have been outed for cheating. They were stealing the signs of opposition catchers in real time and signaling to Houston batters what the next pitch would be. This was going on in 2017 when the Astros beat the NY Yankees for the American League title and then the LA Dodgers in the World Series.

The Astros were fined $5 million by Major League Baseball and their general manager and field manager were suspended for a year by MLB. Then they were immediately fired by the team owner.

And that sets the scene for the non-apology apology news conference by Astros owner Jim Crane. Listen carefully:

Let’s make sure you heard that correctly. Crane blatantly contradicts himself:

In addition, Crane marched out two players, both obviously scripted and rehearsed, and emotionally disconnected and appearing decidedly disingenuous.

By the way, the players have been protected from any punitive action by Major League Baseball.

The sports media erupted, and for good reason. Here’s ESPN’s Jason Fitz:

ESPN radio anchor, Mike Golic added: “Well I guess we see why the Astros organization has handled things so poorly, it starts at the top. Their owner Jim Crane is leading the way at embarrassing the organization with these answers.”

Another sports reporter suggested an upcoming season of horrors for the Astros when they are on the road for away games. He said it will feel like 81 perp walks.

This is a spectacular example of how not to handle a crisis.

Due to either ego or arrogance, or both, team owner Crane apparently thought he could just wing it. Unfortunately for him, his utter lack of preparation led to a crash landing. He refused to be held accountable, saying he didn’t know the sign stealing was going on. But he promised it won’t happen again under his watch, yet it happened under his watch in the first place.

Indeed, under Crane’s watch, things are getting much worse.

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