Mets, Marlins make a statement as 7 MLB games postponed over racial injustice

284

NEW YORK, Aug 28, 2020 (BSS/AFP) – The New York Mets and Miami Marlins made
sure their point was clear Thursday as seven Major League Baseball games were
postponed in protest of racial injustice.

One day after player protests brought NBA playoff games to a temporary halt
— a demonstration that spilled over to the WNBA, Major League Soccer, Major
League Baseball and, on Thursday, the National Hockey League — seven MLB
games were postponed as players from the teams involved opted not to play in
the wake of the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin.

The Mets and Marlins didn’t announce their plans prior to the game, taking
the field in uniform and standing with caps off for 42 seconds.

It was a strong statement on the eve of MLB’s Jackie Robinson Day — which
commemorates the player who broke MLB’s color barrier and wore jersey No. 42.

Left fielder Dominic Smith led the Mets onto the field and led them off,
after a shirt with the legend “Black Lives Matter” was placed on top of home
plate.

Smith had been emotional after the Mets won on Wednesday night — when the
team went ahead with games even as the issues of racial injustice and police
brutality roiled the NBA and the rest of the sports world.

“I think the most difficult part is to see people still don’t care,” Smith
said Wednesday night. “For this to just continually happen, it just shows
just the hate in people’s hearts. That just sucks. Being a black man in
America is not easy.”

Video showed Blake was shot seven times in the back by a white police
officer in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The shooting, which Blake’s lawyer says left
him paralyzed, fueled protests just as the death of George Floyd at the hands
of Minneapolis police did three months ago.

Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said Smith’s words were a wakeup
call.

“What I saw from Dom Smith yesterday upsets me that he’s feeling that pain,
that black people across the country are feeling that pain, and it’s
outrageous,” Van Wagenen said Thursday in an interview on WFAN radio. “The
fact that we are still facing these situations at this point in our society
is upsetting.”