League to discipline Twins over sign stealing

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League to discipline Twins over sign stealing

The nation’s top baseball league said Thursday it will open disciplinary proceedings against a club over its sign stealing attempt.

The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) said it will convene a disciplinary committee meeting, today, to discuss the LG Twins’ admission Wednesday that they tried to steal pitching signs.

They got into hot water after Wednesday’s road game against the Kia Tigers at Gwangju-Kia Champions Field in Gwangju when a sheet of paper on the wall near the clubhouse, detailing Kia’s catcher signs for different pitches, was photographed by a local news outlet.

For instance, the paper said if the catcher touched his left thigh with his index finger, it meant a pitch on the inside to the right-handed batters. Flashing both the index and middle fingers meant a curveball was coming. Showing the index, middle and little fingers together was a sign for a slider.

When the photo began circulating online, the Twins admitted that they’d prepared the paper to help runners steal bases.

“It was clearly the wrong thing to do,” the team said in a statement. “We will make sure something like this never happens again.”

Under KBO regulations, teams are prohibited from relaying information on pitches - through coaches in the dugout, first base and third base coaches, and base runners - to hitters at the plate. Clubs are also not allowed to receive information from outside the dugout during games.

There had been accusations of KBO clubs stealing signs in the past but a disciplinary committee meeting was never held.

The Kia Tigers accused the SK Wyverns of stealing signs during a 2009 Korean Series game. Kia staff suggested SK runners were stealing signs and relaying them to their teammates in the batter’s box.

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