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Is Stealing Signs Cheating?

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posted on Sep, 13 2007 @ 03:29 PM
Signals are the universal language of all sports. One can not communicate with any language in the middle of a sporting event, so we rely on the relay of signals to communicate with one another. Is stealing signs really cheating though?

With Belichick being put through the ringer this week for this little extravaganza about sideline taping, it has really caught my eye. I do believe that videotaping the other teams sidelines is wrong, and teetering on the level of cheating. But what about just keeping an eye out? What if they don't video tape.

When Bobby Thomson hit the shot heard 'round the world, it was one of the greatest moments in history. Years later, and even still slightly today, it is tainted by the accusations that the Giants were stealing signs from center field. How does that taint anything?

I coach youth baseball on a very competitive level. The youth are 15-17, and we compete on a national level each and every year. I spend large portions of the tournaments scouting other teams, and watching what their tendencies are. More importantly, I focus on the coach of each team and try to figure out the indicator of his signals, and what each one is. Within six or seven innings, I can normally pick up on the essentials.

Is this cheating?

Even in some games when I know their signals, I do not utilize this bit of information until it is a meaningful moment. If I do something to let the other team know I have the signals, I won't have them for long. So it's just a little peice of information I keep in my back pocket.

I don't think this is cheating.

I think it is out coaching the opposing team.

On the baseball diamond, is relaying the catcher's signals to the batter cheating? Not a chance. Mix up the signals, try to mask them to the best of your ability. It can be done very easily, and will result in the other teams just scratching their head.

I don't like hearing coaches being called cheaters for stealing signals. I call them good coaches.

What are your thoughts?

[edit on 13-9-2007 by chissler]

posted on Sep, 13 2007 @ 03:47 PM
Filming the coaches isn't cheating?

There's an old saying in sports that goes something like this: If you ain't cheating, you ain't trying... This is, to put it bluntly, crap. It's one thing to notice a tendency in game film, but to film coaches is just not right.

I've never been a Bill Belichik fan, I'm even less of one now. I look forward to the NFL dropping the hammer on the Pat's. Losing a draft pick, and a suspension of Bilichik.

Make no mistake, I'm all for noticing trends on film, bad habits in certain situations, but this crossed a line.

posted on Sep, 13 2007 @ 03:48 PM
You know what they say chiss', it's only cheating if you get caught.

A lot of these things boil down to "I know the other guys is doing it, but I can't prove I'm gonna do the same thing!"

See; stealing signs, steroids, corked bats, sandpaper in the mit, Vaseline under the cap, and so on.


[edit on 13-9-2007 by Dr Love]

posted on Sep, 13 2007 @ 03:53 PM
Like I said, I agree that videotaping is wrong.

But let's put this example aside for a minute, and just stick to stealing signs. If I'm on the other sideline, in the dugout, or on the opposing bench, and I can watch the opposing coach for a few minutes and pick up on his signs, is this cheating? Or is it just strong coaching?

Videotaping is wrong, I agree. But what about being aware?

I don't think Belichick will get the hammer brought down on him, but I do see something coming his way.

posted on Sep, 13 2007 @ 04:00 PM
reply to post by chissler

If you are in the dugout and can see the opposing coach and correctly interpret his signs, more power to ya! If you employ a third party, devices, or subterfuge... It's cheating (when you get caught).

There's more to this Patriots incident that what is being reported. There were also too many audio receivers on the sidelines, they were probably listening in.

posted on Sep, 13 2007 @ 04:06 PM
I don't know, Chiss...the commish. is going to be pissed off something fierce. Apparently a letter was sent to all the NFL teams prior to the season warning them not to do these things...and the Patriots ignored that apparently. Ooopsey, he gonna be ticked.

posted on Sep, 13 2007 @ 06:44 PM
I have to admit, after tuning into a few sports analysis shows, I'll have to retract my initial statement and I'm thinking Belichick may get hit hard here. But as hard as ol' Bill is going to feel it, the Patriots organization is going to get it worse.

posted on Sep, 27 2007 @ 08:39 AM
Stealing signs is cheating. The phillies supposedly did it to the Mets a few weeks back. No way to prove it but, if you know what's coming, it makes it a hell of a lot easier to hit it. Same as in football. The point of sports is to compete (and hopefully win) using your talents and knowledge of the game, the team etc. If you taint that knowledge by gaining advance awareness of the play at hand, you make ability and talent less important. Is it wrong? Perhaps. Does it take something away from the game? Absolutely. Look at it from a different angle. All the players that used HGH before it was outlawed didn't do anything wrong, according to the rules of baseball but they did something to gain an edge. If there's nothing wrong with spying on the other team, there's nothing wrong with a few of your players taking substances to enhance their play, so long as the rules don't outlaw it.

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