Prior to Thursday’s Major League Baseball season opener between the Washington Nationals and New York Yankees, every player took a knee during an opening ceremony in which the players held a black piece of fabric and Morgan Freeman read a speech adjusting social injustice.
Following the opening speech by Freeman, every player then stood during the playing of the national anthem.
Niko Goodrum, Ron Gardenhire shed light on team’s national anthem stance
Prior to tonight’s exhibition game between the Detroit Tigers and Cincinnati Reds, four Reds players decided to kneel during the playing of the national anthem.
The Tigers, however, weren’t on the field during the playing of the anthem and instead decided to remain behind in the locker room.
SS Niko Goodrum later explained meeting and several players chose to stay in the clubhouse while the national anthem was played. Skipper Ron Gardenhire also offered his thoughts:
“We had a meeting and decided what we wanted to do. And that’s what we decided on doing. So we just stayed in for the anthem and came out ready to play ball.”
“Some guys are kneeling. Some guys are locking arms. I’m not really sure what every other team is doing. But that’s what we came up with, that we wanted to do. We did it as a unit. We just stayed inside.”
“I believe in my guys. I told them, ‘Take a stand, you do what you have to do.’ I have no problem with that whatsoever. And I have no problem with those guys on the other side kneeling. That doesn’t bother me one bit. They’re kneeling for a reason, a good reason.”
“We are united. Our baseball team is united here. Baseball in general is united on what we’re trying to do here and make statements about what’s been happening in this country.”