By BERNIE WILSON, AP Sports Writer
SAN DIEGO (AP)-Several of Gabe Kapler’s fellow managers have offered their support for his decision to avoid the field during the national anthem in protest after a school shooting in southwest Texas.
Kapler, manager of the San Francisco Giants, said Friday that he has no plans to be on the field for the anthem “until I feel better about the direction of our country. I didn’t expect it to work the needle should. It’s just something I feel has enough energy to make that move. ”
Nineteen children and two teachers were killed at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, on Tuesday. The attack came just 10 days after a gunman promoting racist hatred killed 10 Black people at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York.
Texas Rangers manager Chris Woodward said Kaler’s action was “courageous.”
“I think we’re all disappointed, especially in this country,” Woodward said. “No one is happy. It’s not about where you are. We just have to move forward as a society.… I will never comment in any way on whether or not I will do what he did.”
Boston Red Sox manger Alex Cora said Kapler, his former teammate, has been vocal on many topics and “because of that, I’m proud of him. I’m a good friend of him and the kind of guy I am. respected far from what he does, and if it is what he does, it is good for him.I understand his reasons.It is very open about it and I know there are a lot of people who will support him.
New York Mets manager Buck Showalter also said he respects “how Gabe feels and the way he goes about it.” Asked about Kapler, Philadelphia manager Joe Girardi replied: “That’s Gabe’s decision.”
Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez said he is rarely on the field for the anthem because of meetings and other pre-game prep.
“If I wasn’t there it wasn’t because I boycotted anything,” Martinez said. “But I believe we need to think of something better for everyone’s life because what we have now is absolutely impossible.
“Everyone has their own visions and wants.… Gabe is his own person and Gabe does what he wants to do. I do differently than Gabe.”
Arizona manager Torey Lovullo called Kapler “a humanitarian,” and that he was “very supportive of what Gabe was doing.” This is a very sad and touching topic for me. ”
Lovullo’s wife and his father’s family are from Buffalo.
“So I have a lot of thoughts about it, and I would say things have to stop, things have to get better,” he said. “I just hope we move in that direction soon.”
Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Kapler is “very passionate about the things he believes in and that’s his way of protesting. … I don’t think any of us are happy with what is happening in our country. I respect people who use whatever platforms they have to answer that. ”
Kapler had protested during the anthem before. In July 2020, just before the virus-shortened 60-game season began, Kapler joined outfielder Jaylin Davis in kneeling ahead in an exhibition game against Oakland Athletics. Davis made a statement about the racial and social issues facing the country.
AP Baseball Writer Jake Seiner, AP Sports Writer David Brandt, and AP freelance writers Ken Powtak, Michael Wagaman and Harvey Valentine contributed.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sport
Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.