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The Cardinals will know their punishment for the Astros hacking scandal soon

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We’re pushing three years since the incident in which former St. Louis Cardinals scouting director Chris Correa hacked into the Houston Astros scouting and analytics database. It’s been a year and a half or so since it became known that, yes, a Cardinals employee was responsible. It’s been six months since Correa was sentenced to 46 months in prison for the hack.

Now, finally, we are to the point where the Cardinals themselves are going to be punished for the crime. From the Post-Dispatch:

“I expect, hope, that it will play out before the start of spring training,” Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. said Monday. “I know the goal is, for the commissioner, to get things completed by late January, hopefully early February at the latest.”

Also from the Post-Disptach:

The Cardinals enjoyed a strong 2016 amateur draft while awaiting sanctions and also spent aggressively in the international market. In that sense, the franchise prepared for the potential loss of draft picks or international signing capability the franchise could suffer.

Well, at least they’ve been allowed to get their affairs in order.

Giants place Hunter Pence on 10-day disabled list with right thumb sprain

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The Giants placed outfielder Hunter Pence on the 10-day disabled list with a right thumb sprain, per an official announcement on Friday. Pence initially sustained the injury during the club’s home opener on April 3, when he dove to intercept a line drive double from Robinson Cano and jammed his thumb. Weeks of playing through the pain hasn’t worked, so he’ll take a breather while the Giants give outfielder Mac Williamson a chance to start in left after getting called up from Triple-A Fresno.

Pence, 35, wouldn’t pin his recent struggles on his injury, but it’s clear that he’s having difficulty finding his footing this year. He slashed a meager .172/.197/.190 through 61 plate appearances in 2018, collecting just one extra-base hit and two walks during the Giants’ dismal 7-11 stretch. While it’s far too early in the season to make any final judgments, it doesn’t look like the veteran outfielder will be replicating the .275+ average, 4.0+ fWAR totals of years past (at least, not anytime soon).

Williamson, meanwhile, has gotten off to a hot start in Triple-A. Prior to his call-up this weekend, the 27-year-old batted an incredible .487/.600/1.026 with six home runs and a 1.626 OPS through his first 50 PA. A hot Triple-A bat doesn’t always survive the transition to the majors, but the Giants will use all the help they can get — especially as they take on the AL West-leading Angels this weekend.