Major League Baseball allowed the legal process to take its course with former St. Louis Cardinals scouting director Chris Correa and his hacking of the Astros’ internal player evaluation database and email system. Correa pleaded guilty and is serving a 46-month sentence in federal prison on five counts of unauthorized access to a protected computer.
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred announced on Monday the punishment for the Cardinals: St. Louis’ two draft picks and $2 million.
The Cardinals’ first-round pick was sent to the Cubs for signing former Astros outfielder Dexter Fowler, but Houston will receive the Cardinals’ second round pick (No.56) and Compensation Round B pick (No. 75).
Houston will now have five picks in the 100 selection in the 2017 MLB Draft: No. 15, 53, 56, 75, 91.
Additional, Correa will be placed on the permanently ineligible list for employment in Major League Baseball.
The news comes after court filing were unsealed by the U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes on Thursday. The details include Correa entering the “Ground Control” database 48 times and accessed the accounts of five different Astros employees — including complete access for 2 1⁄2 years using Astros director of decision sciences Sig Mejdal’s information.
Further details included Correa had access to prospect evaluations including medical info, trade notes, and winter meetings info.
It the most is about as positive an outcome could have been possible for the Astros. The team appeared pleased with punishment with their statement:
“The Houston Astros support MLB’s ruling and award of the penalties. This unprecedented award by the Commissioner’s Office sends a clear message of the severity of these actions. Our staff has invested a great deal of time in support of the government, league and league investigations and are pleased to have the closure on the issue. We are looking forward to focusing our attentions on the 2017 season and the game of baseball.”
CEO William O. DeWitt Jr. and the Cardinals comments continued to uphold the fact that Correa acted alone:
"We respect the Commissioner's decision and appreciate that there is now a final resolution to this matter. Commissioner Manfred's findings are fully consistent with our own investigation's conclusion that this activity was isolated to a single individual."