By Rory Carroll
(Reuters) – Major League Baseball fans deprived of the opportunity to heckle the Houston Astros for the 2017 sign-stealing scandal have been offered the chance to make their point from home by drinking a beer.
In January, the league said that Astros players near the dugout had hit garbage cans to let its batters know what pitch was coming next during the club’s 2017 championship season.
Departed Soles Brewing, a small brewery in New Jersey, has made a clear reference to the scandal with a new offering, an IPA called Trash Can Banger.
The beer comes in white, orange and yellow striped cans that recall the distinctive “Tequila Sunrise” uniform worn by the Astros between 1975 and 1993.
“Beer releases are like a pitcher’s arsenal, and you never really know what’s coming and when … unless, of course, you cheat,” the brewery said in its promotional material.
The sign-stealing scandal rocked the baseball world during the offseason, leading to the firing of Astros manager A.J. Hinch and General Manager Jeff Luhnow.
The team was also fined $5 million and lost draft picks but was allowed to keep its 2017 title and no Astros players were punished, leading some to argue the franchise got off too lightly.
Baseball fans had been primed to make the team’s life a living hell on the road this season but baseball’s March 26 Opening Day was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
(Reporting by Rory Carroll in Los Angeles; editing by Nick Mulvenney)