Major League Baseball is investigating a homophobic slur that was printed on Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Yunel Escobar’s eye-black stickers during a game Saturday.
CBS Sports reports:
As can be seen with those in possession of eagle eyes, to the right – or, for a closer look, click here – Escobar had a message written in spanish on the aforementioned eye black. Translated to English, it means “you are a (insert f-word that’s a slur against homosexual men).”
One possible scenario bouncing around the ‘net is that a teammate wrote that on Escobar’s eye black as a prank and Escobar either A) didn’t see it; or B) just wore it anyway.
If it was Option B, Escobar made a mistake in judgment. Displaying that word in public is sure to set off a firestorm these days, so it should be avoided at all costs. Major League Baseball is already looking into the matter, reports Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com.
The Blue Jays have released a statement on the matter.
The Toronto Blue Jays do not support discrimination of any kind nor condone the message displayed by Yunel Escobar during Saturday’s game. The club takes this situation seriously and is investigating the matter.
Alex Anthopoulos, Sr. VP Baseball Operations and General Manager will be available to the media tomorrow afternoon at Yankee Stadium and we expect him to be joined by Yunel Escobar, Manager John Farrell and Coach Luis Rivera. Details and location for the media availability will be announced tomorrow.
UPDATE:The Toronto Blue Jays announced that shortstop Yunel Escobar has been suspended for three games without pay for gay slur message in eye black.
Blue Jays shortstop Yunel Escobar has been suspended three games for displaying eye-black stickers containing a homophobic slur written in Spanish during Saturday’s game.
“I’m sorry for the actions of the other day,” Escobar said through a translator at a Tuesday news conference. “I’d like to apologize to the fans and the Blue Jays organization. It’s not something I intended to be offensive. It was nothing intentional or directed at anyone in particular. I have nothing against homosexuals.”
The salary lost by Escobar during his suspension will be donated by the Blue Jays to the You Can Play and the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. The shortstop will also participate in an outreach initiative to help educate others about sensitivity and tolerance toward others based on sexual orientation.
“Major League Baseball supports today’s decision by the Blue Jays to discipline Yunel Escobar and commends them for handling this situation appropriately and promptly,” said Commissioner Bud Selig in a statement. “It is important to note that in addition to being suspended without pay, Mr. Escobar has agreed to complete a sensitivity training program and will participate in a public outreach initiative aimed towards promoting sensitivity and tolerance.