His players addressed the Astros' sign-stealing scandal down at the Yankees' facility in Tampa, and manager Aaron Boone did the same as his squad kicked off spring training on Wednesday.
Boone was specifically asked about the rumors of the Astros wearing electronic buzzers underneath their jerseys during games that would relay pitches to them in real time. Is he confident, after MLB's thorough investigation on the matter, that Houston wasn't using these buzzers?
"No. I mean that's certainly one of those great unknowns" he said.
While the investigation was ongoing, there seemed to be a new report every day about what the Astros were involved in, and how deep it all went to stealing signs. So Boone's skepticism is shared by many as to what exactly went down.
However, he won't continue to dwell on it.
"I've spent time, and I'm sure a lot of people have, wondering all the things that could have potentially been going on and probably will never know for sure frankly," he said. "The exciting thing about it is with how Major League Baseball I feel like has dealt with this, and obviously dealt with it with a heavy hand. I do feel like it's something that will aid our sport moving forward. ...That's kinda where my focus lies."
MLB's report, as well as their punishments that led to three managers losing their jobs -- A.J. Hinch, Alex Cora, and Carlos Beltran --happened a few weeks before spring training. It's why Boone doesn't mind talking about the situation, or his players for that matter, because there has been time to process everything.
Gary Sanchez discussed it on Wednesday, and joked around saying, "If I hit a homer and get my team to the World Series, they can rip off my pants. They can rip everything off," in reference to the rumors Jose Altuve was wearing a buzzer after hitting a walk-off homer in Game 6 of the ALCS and refused to have his shirt ripped off because of it.
"I think that's important," Boone said about his players discussing the scandal. "Some guys will want to talk about it and give you a lot. Some guys have already moved on."
Boone said he was "mad, frustrated, disappointed." Getting those thoughts out of their system, the Yankees are looking forward to the 2020 season, and once again, the Yankee skipper has a group that "we know the sky's the limit" for.
The addition of Gerrit Cole as the team's "bonafide ace," as Boone said, could be the missing piece the Bombers needed to make their long-awaited return to the World Series.
But in the end, does Boone believe that the 2020 season will go off without any word of teams cheating, especially with it being on such high alert? Does he believe MLB has now set the standard for it to never happen again?
"That's a fair question," he replied. "Hopefully we continue to put in --- I think frankly it's been more difficult the last couple years with some of the things that Major League Baseball has done to clean things up. I think that's already started to happen frankly the last couple years. Obviously the penalty, the severity and the repercussions of some of the things that have gone on you think would be a deterrent. I think it will be."