The Mariners suspended their backup catcher after his tweets Thursday, in which he apparently referenced the Black Lives Matter movement, the national-anthem protests and social unrest in Charlotte, N.C.
Mariners catcher Steve Clevenger sent out some controversial posts on social media Thursday, apparently referencing the Black Lives Matter movement, the national-anthem protests and social unrest this week in Charlotte, N.C. The Mariners suspended Clevenger for the rest of the season.
One man died after being injured during the Charlotte demonstrations, which occurred after a police officer fatally shot a black man. The governor of North Carolina declared a state of emergency in an attempt to quell further unrest.
Two Clevenger tweets Thursday drew much attention. In the first tweet he apparently referenced the protests in Charlotte and the recent national-anthem protests by athletes, including those in the NFL, the NWSL and high-school football:
M’s @ Twins, 5:10 p.m., ROOT
“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!”
In the second tweet he made an apparent reference to Black Lives Matter and President Obama:
“BLM is pathetic once again. Obama you are pathetic once again! Everyone involved should be locked behind bars like animals.”
Clevenger later changed his Twitter account to protected mode, meaning he must give followers permission to view his tweets.
He later issued this statement:
The Mariners released a statement from general manager Jerry Dipoto on Thursday:
“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.
“We will have no further comment at this time.”
Clevenger, 30, was acquired by Seattle before the season in a trade with Baltimore for Mark Trumbo — who entered Thursday with a career-high 43 home runs and 102 RBI for the Orioles this year — and C. J. Riefenhauser.
Clevenger, who is on the 60-day disabled list after fracturing his right hand in late June, hit .221 in 22 games for the Mariners this season with one homer and seven RBI.
The Baltimore native was drafted by the Cubs out of Southern Louisiana University in 2006.