Ken Rosenthal shares thoughts on Jose Altuve interview that fueled buzzer rumors
An interview Ken Rosenthal conducted with Jose Altuve after the Houston Astros won the ALCS last season gained widespread attention on Thursday, but the reporter insists he did not suspect that Altuve was covering anything up when the two spoke amid a hectic celebration.
Altuve belted a walk-off home run off of New York Yankees flamethrower Aroldis Chapman in Game 6 of the ALCS, and he was seen making a conscious effort to keep his jersey closed and pleading with his teammates to not tear it off as he approached home plate. Rosenthal asked Altuve after the game about not wanting to have his jersey pulled off, and the infielder asked Rosenthal to repeat the question — the only time that interview he needed a question repeated — and then said his wife got upset last time his jersey was torn off.
After some rumors popped up about Astros players possibly wearing buzzers under their jerseys as part of their sign-stealing scheme, many looked back at the Altuve home run and interview and concluded he must have been hiding something. Rosenthal said Friday that he did not even see Altuve come to home plate, and the question the reporter asked is one that was fed to him by a FOX Sports producer in his ear piece.
All those asking if I “knew something” when I asked Altuve about refusing to allow teammates to rip off his jersey . . . hardly. In my rush to get onto the field, I did not even see Altuve cross home plate. Producer suggested question in my ear as I conducted the interview.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 17, 2020
Rosenthal also noted that Major League Baseball investigated the possibility of Astros players using wearable devices and found no evidence of it happening. The league found no evidence of the Astros cheating in 2019 in general.
The way Altuve acted was unusual, if nothing else. In addition to fumbling a bit in the Rosenthal interview, he also went to a private area to change out of his jersey and into a championship T-shirt before celebrating with his teammates. Most Astros players did not leave the field.
Altuve has denied wearing any type of electronic device, and it seems unlikely that MLB will re-open its investigation unless there is compelling new evidence.