On Monday, the Yankees and Major League Baseball appealed last Friday’s ruling ordering a letter sent by MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred to Yankees general manager Brian Cashman be unsealed.
The Yankees argue the release of the letter would cause “significant reputational injury,” according to U.S. District Court judge Jed Rakoff’s ruling that the letter should be unsealed.
The letter is set to be unsealed on Friday, pending Monday’s emergency appeal.
Multiple industry sources told The Post’s Ken Davidoff over the weekend the letter Manfred wrote to the Yankees in September 2017 — the results of an investigation launched from the Red Sox “AppleWatchGate” scandal — documents a pair of sign-stealing-related transgressions, including the Yankees improperly using a dugout phone in a season before 2017. In addition, the letter states that in 2015 and 2016, some Yankees players stationed themselves in their replay room in an attempt to steal opponents’ signs, then relayed that information to runners on second base so they could try to tell the hitter what was coming.
The Yankees believe there is no justification for the publication of the letter.
The judge could let them redact some names in the letter if it is released.
The controversy stems from a lawsuit filed by online baseball gamblers from DraftKings that says the three-year-old private letter includes information that would implicate the Yankees in a far-greater scandal. The unsubstantiated claim is tied into an appeal filed by the gamblers, whose lawsuit that alleged the more-recent Astros and Red Sox sign-stealing scandals created an unfair wagering platform. The appeal was tossed in April.
In 2017, the Yankees and Red Sox were both fined undisclosed amounts after what the league deemed the improper use of a bullpen phone and Apple Watch, respectively.
Manfred wrote in a press release then that the Yankees “had violated a rule governing the use of the dugout phone,” but that the “substance of the communications [over the phone] was not a violation.”
This all took place before the MLB overhauled its sign-stealing rules with regards to electronics.
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