The Dodgers, after an early report by a less-than-reliable source that their game against the Giants would be postponed tonight in solidarity with what the Milwaukee Bucks and Brewers did earlier today, eventually announced they wold not be playing tonight.
And if you had any doubts the Dodgers weren’t going to play tonight, Jon Weisman had this observation when news was breaking this afternoon.
Clayton Kershaw, who has been quite vocal on racial inequality in recent months, was set to start tonight against the Giants. Factoring that in with literally everything else, and this was the right decision (even if it took a while for it to become official).
Mookie. Fuckin’. Betts.
On a day like this, after yet another black person being shot by the police, sports is about the last thing that should be on anyone’s mind. And it sure as hell shouldn’t be used as an escape from our current reality.
This is a historic day for the sports world, led by the players on the Bucks. They staged a boycott — probably not the most accurate term for it, but I’m not going to claim any expertise in the area — and didn’t play Game 5 of their first-round playoff series against the Orlando Magic. Shortly after it was official, the NBA postponed the other games scheduled for tonight.
Earlier this afternoon, the Brewers (and Reds) announced they would not play tonight’s scheduled game in Milwaukee — some 50 miles from where Jacob Blake was shot seven times in the back, while posing no threat, by a Kenosha, Wisc., police officer. The Mariners followed suit.
Some other MLB players have refused to play, too.
This has to stop. There isn’t a ton we as baseball writers/bloggers/etc., can do to change things with this platform. We get yelled at when we don’t write about baseball (and even when we do!). But the fact athletes are using their power in hopes of effecting change is exactly their right, and anyone who disagrees with it needs to look at him/herself in the mirror.
So much has happened to get to this point. So much wrong has happened to get to this point. It’s 2020 and, despite a raging pandemic, we (the royal “we”) still have to racism to this degree! It’s appalling for our country. It isn’t fair and if athletes want to use their platform to try to make positive changes in this country, more power to them. I’ll be behind them every step of the way.
Coincidentally or not, four years ago today was the first time Colin Kaepernick sat during the national anthem to protest this very issue.
There are many, many people who can speak with infinitely more authority on the issue than this straight white male. I urge you to seek them out on Twitter and their respective platforms.
Finally, I leave you with this from Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic. It cannot be said any better.
So go ahead and miss me with “keep politics out of sports” because, 1) this isn’t politics and 2) politics has been in sports since the very beginning. If you haven’t realized that, that’s on you.
Black Lives Matter.