FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Twins utility man Marwin Gonzalez was openly remorseful and apologized for his role in the Astros' sign-stealing scandal as he addressed the media at Hammond Stadium on Tuesday, his first public appearance since the 2017 Astros were implicated in a report by the Office of the
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Twins utility man Marwin Gonzalez was openly remorseful and apologized for his role in the Astros' sign-stealing scandal as he addressed the media at Hammond Stadium on Tuesday, his first public appearance since the 2017 Astros were implicated in a report by the Office of the Commissioner.
"I'm remorseful for everything that happened in 2017, for everything that we did as a group, and for the players that were affected directly by us doing this and some other things," Gonzalez said. "That's why I feel more regret and that's why I'm remorseful."
Gonzalez was a member of the Astros from 2012-18 and played a key role in Houston's run to a World Series championship in '17, as he started all 18 games that postseason and hit an important game-tying homer in Game 2 of the World Series off Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen. He hit a career-best .303/.377/.530 during that regular season with 23 homers in 134 games.
He fully cooperated with MLB's investigation into the scandal and planned to talk to his current Twins teammates so as to avoid the issue becoming a distraction for the club. Because Gonzalez arrived in Fort Myers for camp on Monday, he had not yet had the chance to address many of his teammates, including Rich Hill and Kenta Maeda, who were both members of that 2017 Dodgers team that lost to Houston in a seven-game World Series.
"Unfortunately, this is a trial for this special group of guys," Gonzalez said. "I don't want it to be that way. I want to focus and give my 100% effort -- as I always prepare to do -- [to trying to get over] anything that played out in the past. ... We have a great team and we can get super far."
Twins manager Rocco Baldelli threw his full support behind Gonzalez after the pair had a chance to chat in advance of Spring Training. Baldelli said that Gonzalez took full ownership of his role in the scandal and wanted to speak up in front of the media and teammates in order to apologize.
"He's a guy who is very sensitive to his teammates," Baldelli said. "He cares a lot of about his teammates and his former teammates. Frankly, he cares about everyone. And we are going to support him through the process and help him in every possible way, but he's definitely going to want to communicate about this."
Gonzalez said he was unsure about how the scandal would affect the legacy of the World Series championship or how it would impact how people viewed his personal performance in 2017. He was most regretful of the way the club's actions affected opposing players and pitchers.
"That's the part for which I'm most remorseful -- the players that were directly affected," Gonzalez said. "I wish we could take it back and do it a different way, but there's nothing we can do."
Do-Hyoung Park covers the Twins for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @dohyoungpark and on Instagram at dohyoung.park.