Pennsylvania Little League bans ‘Astros’ as a team name

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Major League Baseball has come under fire for not doing more to punish the Astros. Many want players punished. Some want them to vacate the 2017 title. Some people — mostly commenters and people on social media — have said that the Astros should be banned (or something like it). That’s silly of course. You can’t simply BAN a baseball team.

Or can you? From ESPN:

Just 60 miles east of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, one Little League director is sending a clear message to his 4,000 players about the Houston Astros and their sign stealing . . . “Right now, in our leagues, the Astros are suspended,” said Bob Bertoni, head of District 16/31 Little League.

Meaning: in the 23 Little Leagues he oversees, none of the teams will be named “Astros.” His reasoning is that part of the Little League pledge is, “I will play fair and strive to win,” and given that the Astros did not play fair, what kind of message would it send to the kiddos to put on Astros gear?

This is not the first Little League to do such a thing. The OC Register mentioned last week that some California Little Leagues doing this too. Rob Manfred was specifically asked about that in his ESPN interview on Sunday and offered up a “yes, this is a bad example for the children” quote. No word on how baseball’s partnership with gambling plays into that, what with all this thinking of the children he’s apparently doing.

Anyway, baseball often laments the fact that no one outside of us insiders and hardcore fans talks about the game. Welp, they’re certainly getting a lot of people talking about the game now.