Category Archives: MLB

Corporate Espionage in MLB: Astros Password Hack Results in Prison Time for Ex-Cardinals Director

Christopher Correa, former Cardinals director of baseball development, was sentenced to nearly four years in prison after pleading guilty to five counts of hacking into the computers and emails of Houston Astros employees. In addition to prison time, U.S. District Judge Hughes also ordered him to pay $279,038 in restitution to the Astros. In January, Mr. Correa admitted that from 2013 to at least 2014 he accessed the Astros database called “Ground Control” and emails to obtain scouting information. The hacks occurred after…

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MLB Next at Bat Against Cardinals in Scouting Database Hack

On Monday, July 20, 2016, a Texas federal judge sentenced the former St. Louis Cardinals director of baseball development, Christopher Correa, to 46 months in prison for hacking into the Houston Astros’ player personnel database. The move has been considered a form of espionage, noting the unusual nature of two Major League Baseball clubs being involved in high-tech cheating. In January 2016, Correa plead guilty to five counts of unauthorized access of a protected computer from 2013 to 2014. Correa was fired, forced to…

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Wrigley Rooftop’s Accountant Bargaining for His Freedom

Lovers of baseball can enjoy a Chicago Cubs game from the seats of Wrigley Field or from the rooftops outside the field that surround the outfield. These skyboxes offer seats, drinks, and food for a deal—and give great views inside Wrigley Field. In 2004, the Chicago rooftops and the Chicago Cubs reached an agreement that guarantees a 17 percent of gross revenue to the Cubs. While these skyboxes seem ideal, the Cubs have long complained that rooftop boxes take money away from the Cubs. The…

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Miami Marlins Sue Ex-Season Ticket Holder — The Case of Mickey Axelband

Mickey Axelband is self-proclaimed lifelong baseball fan. When the Miami Marlins were formed in 1993, he bought two season tickets and was excited to be part of the new franchise. Now, Mickey finds himself the defendant of a lawsuit. The plaintiff? None other than his beloved Miami Marlins. In 2012, the Miami Marlins opened up their new stadium—Marlins Park. Axelband agreed to upgrade his two season-tickets and pay $24,000 per season for the pair of seats. As part of the upgrade, the Marlins promised various…

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Nationals Want Ugly Legal Battle against Orioles, MASN Over TV Broadcasting Back in Arbitration

On May 27, 2016 the Washington Nationals filed a Memorandum in further support of their motion to compel the Baltimore Orioles and the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN) to re-arbitrate their broadcast dispute. With their memorandum the Nationals seek a NY State Judge to force re-arbitration before the Revenue Sharing Definitions Committee (RSDC) of Major League Baseball between the Nationals, Orioles, and MASN. This tireless fight over broadcasting between the two clubs began back in 2005 when the Nationals moved from Montreal to Washington against the…

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Family of Deceased MLB Player Blames Tobacco Company for Player’s Death

On May 23, 2016, the wife and children of former MLB player Tony Gwynn brought a wrongful death suit against a tobacco company for manipulating Gwynn into an addiction that eventually took his life. The lawsuit was filed in a California court against Altria Group, Inc., the parent company of Philip Morris USA and U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company. The complaint alleges that the company got the baseball hall of famer addicted to smokeless tobacco and used him and his addiction as a promotional agent for…

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Judge Gives Final Approval of $200 Million MLB Settlement

On April 25, 2016, U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin gave her final approval of the settlement resolving the antitrust claims against MLB. The settlement, which is worth $200 million, lowers the price MLB fans pay to watch games online. The suit began in 2012 when fans brought a class action lawsuit against MLB claiming its territorial blackout policies and policy to sell only league wide game packages violated antitrust laws. The fans complained that the policies prevented them from buying access to watch only the…

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MLB Anti-Trust Settlement Hits Snag with Objector

Back in 2012, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Major League Baseball and some of its broadcast partners, including Comcast and DirecTV, alleging that the high prices for “out of market” games and the blackouts of local “in market” telecasts constituted violations of the Sherman Antitrust Act. The suit accused the defendants of protecting exclusive territories that had been carved out for live-game video presentation using “anticompetitive blackouts.” However, recently it seemed that the lawsuit was coming to an end, with Forbes reporting that the…

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MLB Wins Partial Dismissal in Stadium Netting Suit

MLB partially won its motion to dismiss the class action lawsuit over stadium netting. A California federal judge recently ruled that the court lacked authority over the claims against out-of-state MLB teams. The lawsuit arose in July 2015, when named plaintiff Gail Payne brought suit against all 30 MLB teams and Commissioner of Baseball Rob Manfred. The complaint alleged that MLB failed to protect fans with proper safety netting. Payne, a longtime season ticket holder of the Oakland A’s, claimed she once had to…

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