D-backs, coach fined for Apple Watch in dugout in playoffsPosted: Updated:
Arizona coach Ariel Prieto and the Diamondbacks have been fined by Major League Baseball for his wearing of an Apple Watch in the dugout during the NL wild-card win over Colorado.
The commissioner's office says it interviewed Prieto and examined his watch and cellphone. It says it "found no evidence" that Prieto used the Apple Watch or cellphone for any purpose in the dugout, nor any baseball-related communication on either device.
Prieto refuted any allegations of cheating, saying the watch was in airplane mode and he mistakenly wore the watch into the dugout.
The league issued a statement Friday saying it did not find any evidence Prieto used the watch to gain a competitive advantage but wearing it was a violation of on-field rules.
"MLB found no evidence that Mr. Prieto used the Apple Watch or cellphone for any purpose in the dugout, nor any baseball-related communication on either device, during Wednesday's game. Despite these findings, Mr. Prieto violated MLB's on-field regulation by having this device in the dugout. As a result, Mr. Prieto and the D-backs have each been fined an undisclosed amount. The amount of the fines will in turn be donated by the Office of the Commissioner to hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico."
Earlier in the week, the D-backs had issued this statement:
"Ariel Prieto has assured us that this was a simple oversight and honest mistake. The watch he wore last night was absolutely not used in any way related to our game and we will make certain prior to the NLDS that it will not be an issue again. Ariel takes full responsibility and feels terrible that this has been a distraction of any kind."
Last month, the Boston Red Sox were fined by MLB for using an Apple Watch to relay signs to hitters.
After the Dbacks won the Wild Card game, they will play game one of the NLDS on Friday at 7:30 p.m.
The D-backs hired Prieto as a coach and translator in 2015. The 47-year-old pitched six seasons in MLB with the Oakland Athletics and Tampa Bay Devil Rays from 1995-2001.
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