Waves were sent through the MLB world when Detroit Free Press writer Anthony Fenech was banned from the clubhouse by the Houston Astros and former Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander on Wednesday night.
Following Detroit’s 2-1 victory, the Astros opened their clubhouse to media members per MLB rules, but when Fenech attempted to enter, he was blocked by several security guards
Verlander himself explained that the request stemmed from alleged past “unethical behavior” by Fenech.
Meanwhile, Fenech himself released a statement detailing his thoughts surrounding the controversy.
“I’m extremely disappointed with the Astros’ inexplicable decision to limit my Baseball Writers’ Association of America-credentialed clubhouse access on Wednesday night,” Fenech said in a statement Thursday. “In my time as the Tigers beat writer for the Free Press, my foremost goal has been fair and ethical coverage. I am confident that goal has been clearly and consistently achieved in my body of work and with the personal and professional way I build relationships across baseball. As I do with every player in the clubhouse each season and dozens around the game whom I have covered over the past five years, I wish Justin Verlander good luck and good health for the remainder of the season.”
“Blocking a working reporter from doing his job is unprofessional, disappointing and intolerable,” Free Press executive editor Peter Bhatia said Wednesday. “We will be protesting to MLB and the Astros.”
Meanwhile, the Baseball Writers Association of America has also offered their thoughts on the matter.
“The Baseball Writers’ Association of America is alarmed by the Houston Astros’ decision to restrict the clubhouse access of a reporter from the Detroit Free Press after Wednesday’s game against the Detroit Tigers,” BBWAA president Rob Biertempfel said in a statement. “This action by the Astros violated the MLB club-media regulations, which are laid out in the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and the BBWAA expects MLB to respond accordingly and promptly.”