MLB fines Cardinals $2 million, strips them of draft picks in hacking scandal

Former St. Louis Cardinals scouting director Chris Correa has been banned from working in Major League Baseball for his involvement in a hacking scandal.
(Bob Levey / AP)

The St. Louis Cardinals were fined $2 million and stripped of their two top draft picks Monday, the long-awaited punishment by Major League Baseball after their former scouting director repeatedly hacked into the proprietary databases of the Houston Astros.

Chris Correa was sentenced last year to 46 months in federal prison. As part of Monday’s ruling, Commissioner Rob Manfred permanently banned Correa from working in MLB.

The Cardinals must pay the fine to the Astros, not to the league.

Manfred said MLB investigators had found no evidence that any other Cardinals employees were responsible for the hacking, which lasted for two years and provided Correa access into the Astros’ trade talks, draft evaluations and analytical research projects. However, Manfred said he held the Cardinals “vicariously liable for his misconduct.”


“We respect the commissioner’s decision and appreciate that there is now a final resolution to this matter,” Cardinals owner Bill DeWitt Jr. said in a statement. “Commissioner Manfred’s findings are fully consistent with our own investigation’s conclusion that this activity was isolated to a single individual.”

Manfred said the Cardinals and Astros cooperated in the league investigation but Correa did not. The Cardinals fired Correa in 2015, but MLB deferred its investigation until after the federal case concluded last year.

The Astros now will make five draft picks before the Cardinals make their first pick.

Follow Bill Shaikin on Twitter @BillShaikin


11:40 a.m.: This article was updated with staff reporting.

This article was originally posted at 11:30 a.m.