• Cheated

  • The Inside Story of the Astros Scandal and a Colorful History of Sign Stealing
  • By: Andy Martino
  • Narrated by: Andy Martino
  • Length: 9 hrs and 1 min
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (165 ratings)

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Cheated

By: Andy Martino
Narrated by: Andy Martino
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Publisher's Summary

“A baseball book that reads like a spy novel - a story about cheaters and the cheated that has the power to forever change how we feel about the game.”  (Brian Williams, MSNBC anchor and host of The 11th Hour)

The definitive insider story of one of the biggest cheating scandals to ever rock Major League Baseball, bringing down high-profile coaches and players, and exposing a long-rumored "sign-stealing" dark side of baseball

The ensuing scandal rivaled that of the 1919 "Black Sox" and the more recent steroid era, and became one of the most significant that the game had ever seen. The fallout ensnared many other teams, either as victims, alleged cheaters or both. The Los Angeles Dodgers felt robbed of a World Series title, and fended off accusations about their organization. Same for the New York Yankees. The Boston Red Sox were soon under investigation themselves. The New York Mets lost a promising manager before he ever managed a game.

Andy Martino, an award-winning journalist who has covered Major League Baseball for more than a decade, has broken numerous stories about the Astros and sign-stealing in baseball. In Cheated, Martino takes readers behind the scenes and into the heart of the events that shocked the baseball world. With inside access to the people directly involved, Martino breaks down not only exactly what happened and when, but reveals the fascinating explanations of why it all came about. The nuance and detail of the scandal reads like a true sports whodunnit. How did otherwise good people like Astros' manager A.J. Hinch, bench coach Alex Cora and veteran leader Carlos Beltran find themselves on the wrong side of clear ethical lines? And did they even know when those lines had been crossed? Cheated is an explosive, electrifying read.

©2021 Andy Martino (P)2021 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

Finalist for the 2021 Casey Award for Best Baseball Book of the Year

“Leave it to an old-school journalist like Andy Martino to get to the bottom of a modern-day baseball crime. With his intimate knowledge of clubhouse culture and ability to humanize the sport’s most recognizable figures, Martino explains how an accepted form of gamesmanship gradually transformed into blatant cheating. This story couldn’t be told in 280-character blocks on Twitter and we are fortunate Martino took the time to detail the confluence of factors that resulted a scandal that damaged baseball’s credibility.” (Dylan Hernandez, Los Angeles Times sports columnist)

"Andy Martino offers the definitive account of the sign-stealing scandal that brought low the 2017 World Series winners, undermining that victory and tarnishing the reputations of players and management alike.... In forensic detail, Martino describes the execution of the Astros’ scheme and assesses the advantage it conveyed. More compelling, though, are his attempts to understand its perpetrators, especially Carlos Beltran, one of the ringleaders.... Beltran’s descent down the slippery slope from all-but-sanctioned espionage to reprehensible cheating gives Martino’s narrative its compelling tragic arc.” (The New York Times Book Review)

“Andy Martino delves, dissects, and masterfully delivers the high drama of the sign-stealing scandal that has rocked the baseball world since 2017. Crisply told and densely packed with historical and psychological insights, this is one of the best books about American sports I have read in years.” (Paul Auster, author of The New York Trilogy and 4 3 2 1

What listeners say about Cheated

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Take away the 2017 WS Trophy!!

GREAT book! VERY informative…
It fills-in a lot of blanks.

The Astros need to be stripped of their 2017 WS Champion….PERIOD!!

3 people found this helpful

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Biased — the way this story is told

While there are some interesting facts and info in this piece, it is quite biased in the delivery. The constant effort to make it so bad despite us knowing for a fact that many teams were doing the same (yes, with cameras and in real time) thing during the same era is just silly and immature.

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Great insight

Great listen & informative. As a Dodgers fan, this information picked at an old scab. As a baseball fan, it's ridiculous how a corporation can allow blatant cheating by a team discovered during fact finding that suffered minimal consequences. If the players that participated or were complicit aren't going to be punished, then the Black Sox, Pete Rose, & all PED players should be allowed in the Hall of Fame. The NCAA vacates titles for lesser infractions. Terrible leadership.

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Pretty good back story to the "scandal"

Baseball very rarely has clean Championships, so just add this one to all the others. The author/narrator did a decent job of maintaining neutrality, while presenting the facts. Considering all the cheating that has occurred throughout baseball, I find it highly ironic that the Yankees of all teams called for the stripping of the Title from the Astros. For Pete's sake, you had Clemens and ARod when you won Championships and if you dig deeper I'm sure it won't be hard to find more cheating from that organization alone. Don't throw rocks in a glass house.

I'm not an Astros fan, but do find it hilarious that people were so outraged at this "scandal". The game has adjusted to combat this now, just like it has always been reactive to any "cheating" that has occurred in the history of the game. Who's next on the list, only time will tell.

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Review

I enjoyed this book but did not feel like the writer went far enough in depth as to exactly how the cheating was occurring. He gave a good overview but he did not delved into the real details that I would’ve liked to have seen. Overall it didn’t really give me that much more information over and above what I already knew from listening to in the news.

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written to make Yankee fans feel better

The book paints a picture of damning facts in the beginning. When the facts don't support the desired results (technical limitations prevented WS banging noise capture..maybe cause there were none?) depends on assumptions. Using supposed unnamed sources, ignoring sources that dont match the narrative, or noting the performance at home proves cheating continued (ever heard of home field advantage?). This in the face of vindicating MLB investigations. The Astros continue to win and this shows how limited this books supposed insight holds.

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Cheaters

I listened to this twice because of all the damning information. Lunhow, Hinch, Correa, Springer, Beltran, and Bregman are liars. Cora is a raging asshole. The 2017 Astros should give back the tin, but they won’t, because, in the end, they’re losers.

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Too biased

Good book. Enjoyed the story and detailed history. Have to rate it two stars to help balance the obnoxious bias of the author to degrade the Astros organization. Felt like he wanted to be a hero to the Yankees or Red Sox and wasn’t able to add enough journalistic nuance to pose other interesting thinking. I appreciate the book though, and enjoyed it.

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  • BG
  • 04-03-22

Great Book - Great History

Andy Martino provides a great version of the 2017 Astro’s cheating scandal which is why I bought this book for my son and downloaded for myself to listen to. I was pleasantly surprised with the history of sign stealing provided in the text as well. This book is packed with great information not only on the scandal, but about many of individuals that were involved in the organization as well. Super interesting and Martino did a great job reading it in the Audible version.

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Balanced Look at Baseball’s Nightmare

Author Andy Martino does not judge the Houston Astros after they stole the 2017 World Series. He simply tells a great story with deep research and superb writing. Martino takes us back 100 years to demonstrate the Astros was not the first, or likely the last team to cheat their way to victory. While some authors are horrible narrators, Martino does a good job telling this amazing story.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-06-22

Well written and informative

This book provided great insight into the cheating scandal. Very well written and not dry like a lot of other baseball books