Boston Red Sox caught using Apple Watches to steal pitching signs

The iconic rivalry gets a wearable twist
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What happens when a sport that's over a hundred years old meets new technology that can put information on your wrist? Well, how about using it to steal signs from your iconic rival?

The Boston Red Sox used an Apple Watch to put together a scheme to steal pitching signals from the New York Yankees, according to The New York Times. Red Sox video personnel looked for pitch signals, then relayed that information to trainers in the dugout, who just had to check their Apple Watch and alert the players. Talk about a can't-miss notification.

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Back in 2015, Major League Baseball OK'd Apple Watches in the dugout despite concerns they could be used for cheating. In fact, it gave Kansas City Royals manager Ned Yost an Apple Watch as a gift, then when he wore it during a game it called to make sure he wasn't using to cheat. Phones, for the record, are banned from the dugout, potentially limiting the communication capabilities of the Apple Watch during a game. It's unclear whether the Red Sox used Wi-Fi though.

The inquisition started a couple weeks ago after a formal complaint by Yankees general manager Brian Cashman, who included video evidence that forced the Red Sox to admit their injustice. In retaliation, the Red Sox filed their own formal complaint about the Yankees cheating, although with an older piece of tech: TV.

Stealing signals isn't totally outlawed in baseball though. It's allowed if you can see the signals with your own eyes. For instance, when a player is on second base they can see all the signals they want, and can try to figure them out and relay that information to teammates in the dugout. The Apple Watch just speeds up the process.

It's unclear what punishment the Red Sox will receive, but one thing is for sure: MLB may be looking into banning Apple Watches before the LTE-enabled Series 3 arrives this fall.

WareableBoston Red Sox caught using Apple Watches to steal pitching signs

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Husain Sumra


Husain joined Wareable in 2017 as a member of our San Fransisco based team. Husain is a movies expert, and runs his own blog, and contributes to MacRumors.

He has spent hours in the world of virtual reality, getting eyes on Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Samsung Gear VR. 

At Wareable, Husain's role is to investigate, report and write features and news about the wearable industry – from smartwatches and fitness trackers to health devices, virtual reality, augmented reality and more.

He writes buyers guides, how-to content, hardware reviews and more.

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