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Monday, January 27, 2020

Class action lawsuit filed against MLB, Astros, Red Sox on behalf of DraftKings players

I’m not a law guy so I don’t know if this suit has any standing, but it’s interesting and funny.  It’s relying in part on the official ‘partnership’ between MLB and DraftKings.

BillWallace Posted: January 27, 2020 at 03:43 PM | 14 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: astros, dirty rotten cheaters, draft kings, lawsuit, lawsuits, red sox

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   1. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 27, 2020 at 05:04 PM (#5919725)
While actively inducing their fans to enter into fantasy baseball wagers based on the individual statistical performance of MLB players, MLB’s member teams secretly engaged in corrupt and fraudulent conduct, in knowing and intentional violation of MLB’s Official Rules and regulations, that produced player statistics distorted by cheating and deprived their fans of an honest fantasy baseball competition. The corrupt conduct of at least two of those teams – the Houston Astros and the Boston Red Sox – has now been publicly exposed, revealing that, at the very least, all of DraftKings’ fantasy baseball contests from early in the 2017 baseball season through the end of the 2018 regular season and into the 2019 season, were tainted by cheating and compromised, at the expense of DraftKings’ contestants.
Seems like he should be suing Draft Kings, too. They’re the ones that got his money, allegedly assisted by their MLB partners’ chicanery. Full complaint here.
   2. winnipegwhip Posted: January 27, 2020 at 05:20 PM (#5919733)
I remember the same complaints happened when people bet on Carl Lewis to beat Ben Johnson in the 1988 Olympics. Vegas paid out on the winner of the race and not based upon the subsequent findings/events.
   3. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: January 27, 2020 at 05:43 PM (#5919742)
I think this is the most relevant bit summarizing (in a very general way) the nature of the claims:

Throughout this period, MLB was well aware that its member teams were engaging in corrupt and fraudulent conduct that rendered player performance statistics dishonest and undermined the validity of its fan wagers on DraftKings’ fantasy baseball contests. MLB
wholly failed to properly investigate, deter, remedy or disclose its members’ misconduct and purposefully continued to encourage fan participation in what it knew to be corrupted fantasy baseball competitions.
   4. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 27, 2020 at 06:53 PM (#5919752)
This is the most blatant case of fraudulent advertising since my suit against the film "The Never Ending Story".
   5. McCoy Posted: January 27, 2020 at 07:00 PM (#5919754)
The black sox court case was about defrauding fans as well. The fans lost that one.
   6. Walt Davis Posted: January 27, 2020 at 07:16 PM (#5919760)
Legalities aside, it's hard to see how it was "fraudulent." Maybe Altuve wasn't "really" a 160 OPS+ hitter in 2017 (though he had been that good in 2016) but, as a bettor, all the stats you had at your disposal said he was and there wasn't much reason for you to think that level of performance was going to change in whatever game you were betting on. If the cheating only happened at home, then you should see substantial H/R splits and possibly bet accordingly. The "image" of Altuve that MLB presented was consistent with Altuve's outcomes.

More simply, if DraftKings was around in 1998 and you weren't betting on Mac hitting HRs, that was your own damn fault no matter how many roids he may have done.
   7. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 27, 2020 at 11:12 PM (#5919799)
This is the most blatant case of fraudulent advertising since my suit against the film "The Never Ending Story".
Setup for the lamest Family Guy cutaway ever?
   8. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: January 28, 2020 at 12:16 AM (#5919806)
It's a Simpsons quote.
   9. majorflaw Posted: January 28, 2020 at 01:32 AM (#5919814)
“I don’t know if this suit has any standing”

That’s a non-sensical statement, lawsuits do not have or not have standing. People either have standing to pursue a case or they do not have standing. Someone who merely stayed at home and watched the game(s) likely does not have standing to sue. Someone who bought a ticket to the game, thinking s/he was gonna see a legitimate competition might or might not have standing to sue. Someone who bet money on the game, assuming that the game was ‘on the level’ might well have standing to sue. Standing to sue is personal to the individuals involved, either they have it or they do not have it.

   10. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 28, 2020 at 07:51 AM (#5919830)
Someone who bought a ticket to the game, thinking s/he was gonna see a legitimate competition might or might not have standing to sue.
They would indeed have standing, but the claim would fall on the merits. Others have tried a frivolous argument along those lines, and courts pretty unanimously rule that you paid for a license for a seat to watch a game, they played a game, and that's it. For example, professional gadfly Carl Meyer, a Jets fan, sued the NFL over the Patriots' videotaping of the Jets on the sidelines. It was rejected, with the Third Circuit ultimately explaining:
Here, Mayer undeniably saw football games played by two NFL teams. This therefore is not a case where, for example, the game or games were cancelled, strike replacement players were used, or the professional football teams themselves did something nonsensical or absurd, such as deciding to play basketball
Mayer v. Belichek, et al. (It cites a whole lot of caselaw.) The court expressly rejected the idea that rulebreaking by a team is relevant, and noted:
At the very least, a ruling in favor of Mayer could lead to other disappointed fans filing lawsuits because of "a blown call" that apparently caused their team to lose or any number of allegedly improper acts committed by teams, coaches, players, referees and umpires, and others. This Court refuses to countenance a course of action that would only further burden already limited judicial resources and force professional sports organizations and related individuals to expend money, time, and resources to defend against such litigation.
Which of course has happened.

Of course, this case is based on a different theory. But it's still bullshit; there's no ascertainable damages from the actual cheating, so they have to rely on the typical fake consumer claim that they wouldn't have spent the money if they had known of a particular fact. And while that allegation typically lacks merit in such cases, it's particularly absurd here, since they are speaking not as fans but as gamblers. If a gambler knew that the teams were stealing signs, it would not affect the gambler's willingness to gamble. It would just change, if anything, how he bet.
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 28, 2020 at 09:17 AM (#5919841)
If a gambler knew that the teams were stealing signs, it would not affect the gambler's willingness to gamble.

Au contraire. A gambler that thinks he has inside info is much, much more likely to gamble.
   12. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 28, 2020 at 09:36 AM (#5919845)
Fair enough, Snapper. I meant in the hypothetical in which it were generally known.
   13. . Posted: January 28, 2020 at 01:07 PM (#5919926)
I know the term is mostly just a cover for the leagues' shakedowns, but at least in theory this kind of thing is presumably what the "integrity fee" the gambling houses pay the leagues would be aimed at preventing.
   14. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: January 29, 2020 at 12:30 AM (#5920119)
Even I didn't think MLB getting in bed with gambling interests would lead to defending lawsuits quite this quickly.

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