The last major piece of news to drop in the Cardinals hacking scandal came when former Cardinals Director of Scouting Chris Correa entered a guilty plea in federal court. Correa is scheduled to be sentenced on April, 11, the same date as the Cardinals' home opener. Major League Baseball is unlikely to announce a punishment for the Cardinals until the federal case is finally wrapped up. While we might have expected quiet on the hacking front until then, the Houston Chronicle has revealed a few more interesting details.
The Chronicle published a transcript of the hearing detailing how Correa accessed the Astros database. Much of the information was already known, including the fact that Correa originally accessed the Astros database to check for Cardinals proprietary information. Correa indicated he told Cardinals colleagues, but did not mention any by name and no further charges are expected in this case.
Correa admitted to accessing the database on multiple occasions and doing more than just check for stolen information. These facts have been known since Correa entered the guilty plea. The Chronicle reported some new information detailing with a bit more specificity exactly how Correa was able to get in the Astros database.
He knew the password:
The password of a high-ranking Astros executive that Chris Correa used to access Astros' systems was based on the name of a player "who was scrawny and who would not have been thought of to succeed in the major leagues, but through effort and determination he succeeded anyway," assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Chu said on Jan. 8 when Correa pleaded guilty to hacking the Astros in federal court.
Any guesses on who that might be...
THE PASSWORD WAS ECKSTEIN!!!! pic.twitter.com/4piNx8MKHv— MaleFeminist4Hillary (@weed_mouse) January 23, 2016
The Cardinals have no shortage of players who might meet the description above. He could have been talking about Aaron Miles. Pete Kozma will always have that run in 2012. Skip Schumaker is a bit better athlete than people give him credit for. However, nobody quite embodies "scrawny...effort and determination" like the former Cardinals' shortstop.
Listed at 5'6" and 170 pounds, Eckstein played 10 seasons in the majors, making two All-Star teams, playing on two World Series winners, including winning the 2006 World Series MVP with the St. Louis Cardinals. He had 1,414 hits, but just 35 of those went for home runs. As for Eckstein himself, he seems to be taking his potential role in the scandal in stride.
I guess Eckstein123 was NOT just enough... #thisisnotthepasswordyouarelookingfor— David Eckstein (@DavidEckstein22) January 23, 2016
The hacking scandal has been a rather unpleasant matter for everyone involved since details began to come out last June. Outside the realm of sports, Correa could potentially serve jail time. Within the sport, the Cardinals have been embarrassed and could suffer financial and competitive penalties. That does not mean, however, that the fact Eckstein might be the password used to hack the Astros is not funny, because it is pretty darn amusing.