There was much speculation that the return of sports would bring with it a return of protesting during the national anthem.
Well, that speculation turned out to be accurate.
Before Monday night’s Spring Training game against the Oakland A’s, Giants manager Gabe Kapler, first base coach Antoan Richardson and outfielders Jaylin Davis, Mike Yastrzemski and Austin Slater, knelt during the national anthem.
Several Giants, including Gabe Kapler, knelt for the national anthem. pic.twitter.com/qMIkwOaFOn
— KNBR (@KNBR) July 21, 2020
Hitting coach Justin Viele also took a knee. Brandon Crawford put his hands on Davis’ and Richardson’s shoulders.
According to KNBR in San Francisco:
Kapler, whose parents were civil rights activists, had signaled he would have ‘difficult’ conversations with the team in the clubhouse following the death of George Floyd in police custody and the ensuing fury and protests that spilled out across the country and globe.
Kapler, in stating that ‘Black Lives Matter,’ said, ‘Racism, sexism, homophobia and examples of privilege and inequality are happening all the time in the baseball environments as well as in society. White men are privileged.’
None had kneeled during the Cactus League games in February and March. Kapler, asked why Floyd’s death while a Minnesota policer officer knelt on his neck had affected him so, said in May: ‘I think it’s perhaps that it’s the fact that you need to ask that question. We shouldn’t have to ask ‘why this case’ about the deaths of unarmed black men in this country. It should be an abhorrent aberration when it happens instead of just another statistic. Unfortunately, that isn’t yet our reality.’
Whether the Giants coaches and players plan to continue their protests during the regular season, remains unclear.
Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter @themightygwinn