A.J. Hinch has some regrets.
The World Series-winning Houston Astros manager was fired on Monday, shortly after it was announced MLB suspended him and GM Jeff Lunhow one season each for not stopping the illegal sign-stealing scandal that took place during the Astros’ 2017 championship season — when they beat the Yankees in the ALCS — and throughout 2018.
“I regret being connected to these events, am disappointed in our club’s actions within this timeline, and I accept the Commissioner’s decision,” Hinch said in a statement. “As a leader and a Major League Manager, is it my responsibility to lead players and staff with integrity that represents the game in the best possible way. While the evidence consistently showed I didn’t endorse or participate in the sign stealing practices, I failed to stop them and am deeply sorry.”
Houston also forfeited first- and second-round draft picks for the next two years and was fined $5 million, as part of the penalty.
The league determined that former bench coach and current Red Sox manager Alex Cora devised an electronic system to steal signs, and while Hinch and Lunhow did not orchestrate it, they should have…