U.S. Congressman Requests Oversight Hearing Into MLB's 'Cheating Scandal'

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The scope of MLB's sign stealing scandal appears only to be growing. 

At the end of what has been a historic week for the sport, on Friday, U.S. Congressman Bobby Rush (D—Ill.) called for a congressional hearing related to league's sign stealing scandal.

"I believe it is our ethical and moral imperative to investigate the Major League Baseball cheating scandal fully and to determine the extent to which this cancer has spread," Rush wrote in his letter to senior members of the Committee on Energy & Commerce. "I firmly believe that our investigation must also look at the actions taken by Major League Baseball, and the teams that comprise it, to reprimand the individuals who have been implicated."

Noting that the Committee on Energy & Commerce has the oversight of major league sports, Rush cites a Sports Illustrated story from Thursday about the "ethical crisis" currently engulfing the league.

On Thursday, the Mets parted ways with new Carlos Beltrán, who became the third manager this week to be fired in the wake of MLB releasing its report on the Astros.

Astros manager AJ Hinch was suspended and subsequently fired on Monday. Alex Cora "mutually agreed" to part ways with the Red Sox on Tuesday following his participation in the Astros' scheme as their bench coach. Houston general manager Jeff Luhnow was also suspended by MLB and fired.

"Cheating in any sport is anathema, especially in professional sports," Rush wrote. "Many children, and adults for that matter, look up to professional athletes as a testament to the American dream and what is possible through hard work and determination. This latest fiasco is nothing short of a gut punch to those ideals."

Commissioner Rob Manfred recently told Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci that new protocols will "absolutely" be in place by Opening Day to curb the misuse of technology around baseball.

Congress has gotten involved with MLB-related issues previously, perhaps most notably in a March 2005 hearing related to performance enhancing drug use in the sport. 

More recently, this past November multiple representatives sent a letter to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred to express their “firm opposition” to MLB’s “radical proposal to eliminate numerous Minor League Baseball clubs.” The letter, which was co-signed by more than 100 members of the House of Representatives, reflected a bipartisan message and hinted at potential repercussions for MLB if it moves forward with potential plans to shrink minor league baseball.

As it relates to Rush's call, however, there was no word Friday evening whether the committee plans to hear the Illinois congressman's request.