Well, it appears that two more major league baseball players had to apologize Sunday after tweets that used anti-gay and racial slurs surfaced, sent while they were teenagers (18).
Sean Newcomb pitcher for the Atlanta Braves and Trea Turner a shortstop for the Washington Nationals both apologized in various degrees, and well as their respective teams. The two become join Josh Hader of the Milwaukee Brewers who have had to publicly apologize for their offensive tweets. Major League Baseball said that Newcomb would meet with league executive and former player Billy Bean, who is openly gay as part as of diversity training. Turner might have to I certain at some point do the same, his tweets were found late Sunday night.
Newcomb’s tweets were sent when he was 18 and a freshman in college. He used the word “fag” in six tweets and made racist comments including using the word “nigga.”
Turner as well made his when he was 18 and playing college baseball. They were summarized by the Washington Post:
Two of Turner’s resurfaced tweets were replies in which acquaintances were called homophobic slurs. In another, the tweet reads “unless ur gay” in a reply to a former North Carolina State teammate. A fourth tweet suggests that if a woman working at a drive-through were to ask who the [faggot] in the back of a car was, it would be Turner. A fifth tweet reads, “Once u go black, u gonna need a wheelchair,” a line from the movie “White Chicks.”
Both players did manage to apologize, Newcomb’s, to be honest, was less than convincing.
“I felt that it would be good to address it right away and just let people know that I meant nothing by it,” Newcomb said. “I didn’t mean to offend anybody and I’ll make sure it doesn’t happen again. I’ll be smarter. I think that people who know me know that’s now the kind of person I am.”
Lame, that’s all I can say of that apology, there is nothing sincere or contrite about it and it’s a stark contrast to Hader’s reaction when his tweets surfaced.
Turner’s mea cupla was better:
“There are no excuses for my insensitive and offensive language on Twitter,” Turner said in a statement released by the Nationals. “I am sincerely sorry for those tweets and apologize wholeheartedly. I believe people who know me understand those regrettable actions do not reflect my values or who I am. But I understand the hurtful nature of such language and am sorry to have brought any negative light to the Nationals organization, myself or the game I love.”
Both teams also issued statements:
“I have spoken with Trea regarding the tweets that surfaced earlier tonight,” Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo said. “He understands that his comments — regardless of when they were posted — are inexcusable and is taking full responsibility for his actions. The Nationals organization does not condone discrimination in any form, and his comments do not in any way reflect the values of our club. Trea has been a good teammate and model citizen in our clubhouse, and these comments are not indicative of how he has conducted himself while part of our team. He has apologized to me and to the organization for his comments.”
From the Atlanta Braves:
“We are aware of the tweets that surfaced after today’s game and have spoken to Sean who is incredibly remorseful. Regardless of how long ago he posted them, he is aware of the insensitivity and is taking full responsibility.
“We find the tweets hurtful and incredibly disappointing and even though he was 18 or 19 years old when posted, it doesn’t make them any less tolerable. We will work together with Sean towards mending the wounds created in our community.”
In a weird side issue, it appears it wasn’t a coincidence that Turner’s tweets surfaced hours after Newcomb’s, according to the Post. “The offensive messages surfaced after a Nationals-centric Twitter account earlier Sunday dug up racist and homophobic tweets sent by ... Newcomb.”
In another weird side issue, Turner “lends his time to MLB’s ‘Shred Hate’ program, an anti-bullying initiative.” I guess he can use himself as an exhibit from now on.
The MLB has ordered that Hader take sensitivity training and choosing not to impose a fine or suspension since the tweets were before his time with the MLB. Newcomb and Turner will most likely get the same.
You can forgive both Newcomb and Turner for their homophobia and racist comment as teenagers if they’ve both changed. Turner, I am more convinced, but to be honest Newcomb’s response was lame. But you have to give credit to the MLB, they have directly addressed the issues, but I would suggest that these players spend some time going over their Twitter (social media) accounts and take care of business.