On Sunday, Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb made a public apology for tweets he made while a teenager labeling them “stupid stuff.” Newcomb, who is 25, spoke shortly after nearly pitching a no-hitter versus the Los Angeles Dodgers. His tweets were made in 2011 and 2012 during his senior year of high school.
One of his tweets had a racial epithet that had been a rap lyric, and several others included gay slurs. In his apology, Newcomb said that he wanted to apologize for the insensitive material he tweeted. He added that it was six to seven years ago and he was saying stupid stuff with his friends.
He continued by saying he has grown a great deal since then and did not mean anything by the tweets, calling them something stupid he did back then, and for sure did not mean anything by them.
Another incident that was similar was dealt with by Major League Baseball earlier in July that involved Josh Hader a reliever with the Milwaukee Brewers that surfaced the night he appeared in the All-Star Game.
In a prepared statement, MLB said that inappropriate comments do not have any place in the game. MLB is aware of the serious issue and Billy Bean will have a meeting next week with Sean Newcomb and following that meeting MLB will identify the appropriate diversity course in Atlanta.
Bean is the vice president of social responsibility and inclusion for MLB and a former outfielder in the big leagues who is openly gay.
Hader made an apology after the offensive tweets he sent while a teen were made public July 17. The following day, MLB announced that Hader, who is 24, would be required to attend sensitivity training as well as take part in inclusion and diversity initiatives. Hader met with Bean as well.
The Braves organization released a statement that it posted on Twitter saying it was aware of tweets that surfaced following Sunday’s game and had spoken to Newcomb, who is very remorseful. The statement continued by saying regardless of when the tweets were made, Newcomb is aware of their insensitivity and takes full responsibility.
The Braves clubhouse was closed to media after Newcomb had answered questions about his 4-1 win over Los Angeles in which he was within a strike of throwing a no-hitter. The no-hit bid was broken up by Chris Taylor’s single with two outs in the ninth inning.
Newcomb claims he forgot about his tweets until he saw them mentioned on his phone following the game. The clubhouse was reopened shortly after and Newcomb told reporters he asked the team to bring back reporters so the issue could be addressed.