Good morning, Athletics Nation!
Three scheduled MLB games weren’t played on Wednesday, in response to the shooting of Jacob Blake by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last Sunday. Blake, an unarmed Black man, was shot seven times in the back by officers.
The Milwaukee Brewers, who call the state of Wisconsin home, chose not to play on Wednesday. Their opponent, the Cincinnati Reds, agreed to postpone the game. The Seattle Mariners later voted not to play their game against the San Diego Padres, and the San Francisco Giants’ matchup against the Los Angeles Dodgers was also postponed.
“Tonight wasn’t the night for baseball,” Milwaukee reliever Brent Suter said via insider Adam McCalvy. The Brewers released a statement supporting their players’ decision, as did the Mariners.
“I think it’s an enormous stand. It’s more than sports, and they showed it. It’s not about the game; it’s more than that. And this is a time where we need to really not stay quiet and show our power and our voices,” said Brewers reliever Josh Hader, via insider Alyson Footer.
Reds reliever Amir Garrett offered his support of Milwaukee’s decision on Twitter: “Proud of my organization @Reds and also the @Brewers we were able to come together and make a decision not to play. We stand in solidarity today and I am very proud. We need change, and we need it now. #BlacklivesMatter.”
Mariners player Dee Gordon said the following, via insider Greg Johns:
“There are serious issues in this country,” Gordon said. “For me, and for many of my teammates, the injustices, violence, death and systemic racism is deeply personal. This is impacting not only my community, but very directly my family and friends. Our team voted unanimously not to play tonight.
“Instead of watching us, we hope people will focus on the things more important than sports that are happening.”
The Dodgers and Giants released a joint statement:
“Throughout our country’s history, sport has been a powerful vehicle towards change. The Dodgers and Giants proudly join our players in the shared goal for a more equitable and just society.”
MLB said the following in support of its players:
“Given the pain in the communities of Wisconsin and beyond following the shooting of Jacob Blake, we respect the decisions of a number of players not to play tonight. Major League Baseball remains united for change in our society and we will be allies in the fight to end racism and injustice.”
A few individual players also withdrew themselves from their teams’ games, including Chicago Cubs outfielder Jason Heyward, Colorado Rockies outfielder Matt Kemp, and two members of the St. Louis Cardinals, outfielder Dexter Fowler and pitcher Jack Flaherty, reports Footer.
Those on teams feeling isolated, YOU’RE NOT ALONE. Anyone that thinks their voice isn’t heard, IT IS. No matter how small or big your platform I grieve w/you, I’m angry w/you, I’m searching for solutions WITH YOU. The price of speaking up is great, the cost of silence is greater.— Bruce Maxwell (@bufaloblanco13) August 27, 2020
The Oakland A’s played the Texas Rangers on Wednesday. Manager Bob Melvin said the following, via Matt Kawahara of the S.F. Chronicle: “It was really close to game time. And we decided to play. I did give the option for anybody who did not feel comfortable playing not to play. ... [The players] wanted to be united as a group in what we did ... Our guys said, look, we’re going to play tonight and tomorrow we’ll discuss it as a group.”
These MLB postponements were preceded by similar decisions in the NBA. Three playoff games were scheduled for the day but none of them were played, with the Milwaukee Bucks being the first team to elect to boycott.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported the following:
Emotions are raw, players were already worn out of bubble environment prior to the Jacob Blake shooting and sources say discussions within teams are ongoing about postponing tomorrow’s three games too — and beyond. “The season is in jeopardy,” one vet player here tells ESPN.
Quote of the year: "Sports are the reward of a functioning society."— Julia Poe (@jpoe24601) August 26, 2020
So much respect for every single NBA athlete taking a stand today.
The scoreboard at Oracle Park on Wednesday:
- Slusser: No cancellation as A’s top Rangers — but Thursday’s game is up in the air ($)
- Hickey: Trivino’s Recent Surge has Melvin Excited About Athletics Bullpen Possibilities
- Prospect watch: Jonah Heim gets first career hit in MLB debut
- Game #32: A’s scratch out ugly 3-1 win over Rangers
MLB News & Interest
- Acee: Padres love team, but Preller sees chance to improve at trade deadline
- Piecoro: Hazen: Losing skid tempers trade deadline approach
- Polishuk: Indians Recall Mike Clevinger (former A’s catcher Beau Taylor was optioned down in his place)
- Today in Baseball History
Yesterday’s Game Highlights
Wednesday: Win! Three runs included one on a wild pitch and one on a bases-loaded HBP, but we’ll take it. (The other was an RBI by Piscotty, naturally.)
Best of Twitter
Talks continue for a postseason bubble (or rather, a few bubbles)
Three stadiums available in southern California, Arlington and Houston in Texas. Again: Nothing close to final. Other regions not out of question. But this is a plan being discussed. https://t.co/fp6S24S5Op— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) August 26, 2020
Just a reminder that Sports Reference is looking for a devOps engineer.https://t.co/xjGPzxvG4s— Sean Forman (@sean_forman) August 26, 2020
This could be a fun new way to watch the Giants lose
If @MLB playoffs began today, the @Dodgers and @SFGiants would meet in the *postseason* for the first time. @MLBNetwork had a great graphic on this during #MLBCentral. Yes, they played 3-game tiebreakers to decide the 1962 and 1951 pennants; those were regular-season games.— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) August 26, 2020
Will Pudge’s son catch on somewhere else? (Well, pitch on, I suppose.)
The #SFGiants DFAd Dereck Rodríguez.— Kerry Crowley (@KO_Crowley) August 26, 2020
Joey Rickard is coming up to the MLB roster. Shaun Anderson was optioned.
Bummer news for a player we just saw recently (he had a blood clot procedure)
Mike Hazen said Merrill Kelly probably won't be back this year.— Zach Buchanan (@ZHBuchanan) August 26, 2020