Joe Kelly wasn’t even on the 2017 Los Angeles Dodgers that got screwed out of a World Series title by the Houston Astros, but he has inherited the anger from that year when he joined the team.
In his first interview since getting suspended eight games for a July 28 incident with the Houston Astros, the Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher said that his animosity toward the Astros stems more from how they handled the sign-stealing investigation than the actual cheating itself.
Speaking on “The Big Swing,” a podcast hosted by his Dodgers teammate Ross Stripling — Kelly explained that he felt like the Astros players allowed higher-ups like manager AJ Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow to take the fall for their wrongdoing.
“The people who took the fall for what happened is nonsense,” Kelly said in an interview taped before his appealed suspension was reduced to five games. “Yes, everyone is involved. But the way that (sign-stealing system) was run over there was not from coaching staff. … They’re not the head boss in charge of that thing. It’s the players. So now the players get the immunity, and all they do is go snitch like a little b—h, and they don’t have to get fined, they don’t have to lose games.
“When you take someone’s livelihood … to save your own ass, that’s what I don’t like,” Kelly added. “Cheating? They cheated. Everyone knows they’re cheaters. They know they’re cheaters. It’s over. That’s done with. But now they mess it up by ruining other people’s lives, so they f–ked it up twice. … When you taint someone’s name to save your own name, this is one of the worst things that you could probably do. … That really friggin’ bugs me. I think I’ll be irritated forever.”
The 32-year-old gained support from around the country after he threw a ball near the head of Astros third basemen Alex Bregman, then taunted shortstop Carlos Correa during the Dodgers’ 5-2 win in Houston.