Carlos Correa defends Carlos Beltran, says Astros players made own decisions
Many have tried to use Carlos Beltran and Alex Cora as scapegoats in the Houston Astros’ sign-stealing scheme, but Carlos Correa did his best to put a stop to that following the team’s big press conference on Thursday.
After the Astros embarrassed themselves with a scripted press conference that included phony statements from Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve, Correa offered a refreshing take on the cheating scandal. The shortstop addressed the recent report that Astros players were heavily influenced by Carlos Beltran, who was with the team in 2017 and painted by Major League Baseball as one of the masterminds behind the sign-stealing operation.
“We didn’t feel scared. We didn’t feel intimidated. He was the nicest guy that we could ever have. He was the best teammate we could ever have,” Correa said. “Beltran was the leader of the clubhouse, but we all had a say in everything that we were doing. Whatever he said, and whatever we were doing, we had the chance to stop it as a team — everybody. Everybody had a chance to say something, and we didn’t.
“Whatever anonymous sources are saying we felt intimidated or felt we were too young to say something, that’s just straight up bulls—. Beltran didn’t intimidate anybody.”
Correa also called Beltran an “unbelievable gentleman” and spoke about the positive influence he had on the team when players were slumping or feeling down on themselves.
The most recent report from The Athletic said Beltran and Cora saw ineffiencies with what the Astros were doing with their infamous codebreaking program and took matters into their own hands. Beltran was supposedly asked to stop by at least one veteran player, but even manager AJ Hinch believed overruling Beltran would hurt his credibility in the clubhouse. If you remember, there were reports that Hinch smashed video monitors in the Astros clubhouse to express his displeasure with the sign-stealing antics.
Correa is only 25, so he was 23 during the 2017 season. Beltran was 40 at the time, and The Athletic report said younger players were “steamrolled” by him with the sign-stealing scheme. Correa obviously feels that is inaccurate.