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Players upset with Manfred

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Players who have won a World Series — and those who have come up short — seethed at Commissioner Rob Manfred’s reference to the sport’s championship trophy as merely a “piece of metal,” saying that comment reflected a disconnect between baseball’s boss and those who produce the product on the field.

As with so many things being talked about around the majors as spring training gets started, this all stems from the Houston Astros’ sign-stealing scam.

There have been calls for players involved to be punished in some way; MLB gave them immunity in exchange for cooperating.

Some think the Astros should be stripped of their 2017 championship, but Manfred said this on Sunday in an interview with ESPN: “The idea of an asterisk or asking for a piece of metal back seems like a futile act.”

That phrasing did not sit well.

Reliever Ryan Doolittle — a member of the 2019 title-winning Washington Nationals — and other players noted that the official name of the hardware itself is The Commissioner’s Trophy.

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