There has been some controversy in the past involving the Blue Jays and sign-stealing. Back in 2011, Amy K. Nelson reported a story that made “The Man in White” — an alleged sign-stealing plant set up in the outfield at Rogers Centre — infamous. Her story detailed suspicions about the Jays and sign-stealing going back a couple of years before that, shared by multiple parties.
Whether that continued or, rather, just got in people’s heads is unknown for certain. But other opposing players have since stated that, in their view, the Jays had some help from above, behind or beyond.
On the one hand, yes, there is some history here that strongly suggests that sign stealing was, at least at some point, a tool in the box of the Blue Jays. On the other hand, baseball players are a superstitious lot and four-year-old stories could easily lodge in their head. And of course, if you got lit up like Cueto got lit up last night, you may be pretty tempted to believe that the opposition got some help in that regard.
Either way, fun times and drama are afoot.
UPDATE: Jim Caple of ESPN got a comment from Rob Manfred on the matter:
Manfred on Cueto: “Stealing signs is something often claimed, rarely proven in baseball. I’m not going to say anything more than that.”
Yup. My view of sign stealing stuff is “prove it or clam up.” There’s no percentage in talking about it unless you’ve got the goods.