Seattle Mariners catcher Steve Clevenger has been suspended without pay for the remainder of the season after making controversial remarks about Black Lives Matter and President Barack Obama.
USA Today reports that Clevenger, 30, went on a social media tirade on the night of Sept. 23, advocating for Charlotte protestors to be “locked behind bars like animals.”
His tweets, which have since been deleted, include:
“Black people beating whites when a thug got shot holding a gun by a black officer haha (expletive) cracks me up! Keep kneeling for the anthem!
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“BLM (Black Lives Matter) is pathetic again! Obama you are pathetic once again! Everyone should be locked behind bars like animals!”
As a result, the Seattle Mariners have suspended Clevenger, issuing this statement:
The Seattle Mariners are very disappointed at the tweets posted on Steve Clevenger’s account. While he is certainly free to express himself, his tweets do not in any way represent the opinions of the Seattle Mariners. We strongly disagree with the language and tone of his comments. We are currently examining all internal options that are available to us as we determine appropriate next steps.
Follwing the controversy, Clevenger has locked his account and made it private, according to the Daily Mail. He also issued an apology on Facebook the same night, writing:
I am sickened by the idea that anyone would think of me in racist terms.
I am also proud that my inner circle of friends has never been defined by race but by the content of their character.
Any former teammate or anyone who has met me can attest to this and I pride myself on not being a judgmental person. I just ask that the public not judge me because of an ill worded tweet.
I like many Americans are frustrated by a lot of things in the world and I would like to be a part of the dialogue moving forward to make this a better world for everyone.
I once again apologize to anyone who was offended today and I just ask you not judge me off of a social media posting.