While they said that they have no direct evidence, the Brewers have suspicions that this has been happening throughout the series, which they informed Major League Baseball’s “resident security agents” about. The league said they have not detected anything.
“They use video people to get sequences,” a Brewers source told The Athletic of the Dodgers. “It’s known throughout the league. MLB knows it’s an issue.”
While this has become an increasing issue across the league, there was one instance in the sixth inning of Game 5 of the series on Wednesday in Los Angeles — in which the Dodgers won 5-2 — that tipped off Brewers catcher Erik Kratz.
Manny Machado stood alone at second base, beginning to lean towards third. With Chris Taylor at the plate and Corbin Burnes on the mound, Machado signaled to Taylor. First it was jumping in the air, then he began motioning with his hands. Seconds later, Taylor struck out.
As Taylor departed for the Dodgers’ dugout, catcher Erik Kratz went to the mound to talk to Burnes, both putting gloves over their mouths for the duration of the conversation. They were concerned that the Dodgers were picking up their signs, so they discussed their next move. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf broke up the meeting, and Los Angeles wound up scoring two runs that inning, taking a 3-1 lead. The next inning, they scored two additional runs, bringing the game to 5-1.
“So, did we change signs? Or did we keep them the same?” said Kratz. “How do they know?”
While the team said they don’t think the Dodgers have “completely” figured out their signs, they have started using multiple signs even when Los Angeles doesn’t have a runner on base — something a rival executive said is a “dead giveaway they think something is up.”
The team has also seen repeatedly on video where Dodgers players “move around and use their hands in motions that seem as if they could be signals.”
“I mean, the whole cameras and things, that’s not something we can really control,” Milwaukee pitcher Zach Davies told The Athletic. “But when you see guys do certain things out on the field to relay certain signs to hitters, then you know you’ve got to make things a little bit more tricky or complex. It’s definitely something you’re paying attention to.”
Both the Brewers and Dodgers officially declined to comment to The Athletic.
The Dodgers currently lead the series 3-2 heading into Friday night’s Game 6 in Milwaukee.
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