The Seattle Mariners have suspended backup catcher Steve Clevenger for the remainder of the season without pay after he sent out a pair of racially insensitive and inflammatory tweets Thursday night. The tweets were aimed at the Black Lives Matter Movement, President Obama, and Charlotte Protesters.
The Governor of North Carolina declared a state of emergency after the city of Charlotte erupted in protests in wake of another fatal shooting of Black man by police. Clevenger’s Tweet’s were also critical of athletes taking part in national anthem protests around the country, which attempt to shed light on racial oppression and social injustice. Clevenger’s first tweet read:
“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!”
He went on further in a second tweet:
“BLM is pathetic once again. Obama you are pathetic once again! Everyone involved should be locked behind bars like animals.”
The Mariners issued a statement condemning the tweets as soon as they were made aware of them and decided that his actions were worthy of a suspension. Clevenger, whose Twitter account is now protected, meaning he can decide who gets to see his tweets, also issued a statement apologizing to his teammates and his organization. He lamented for being a distraction but failed to acknowledge the parties he offended most with his tweets. That’s Keith Lamont Scott, the Black man killed by a police officer, Scott’s family, and the many law enforcement and civilians harmed during the Charlotte protests.
Team manager Scott Servais had no input in Clevenger’s punishment and said that incident was ‘unfortunate’ and that the team was ‘very surprised’, but that it would not be a distraction to the club. Clevenger was making a non-guaranteed $517,000 this season and with ten games left the suspension will cost him just over $30,000. Clevenger is unlikely to appeal.