No game tonight
If you tune in to see the M's and Padres tonight, you won't see them
August 26, 2020
Tonight's game between the Mariners and the San Diego Padres has been postponed.
The postponement was a decision made by the Mariner players in an effort to join the Milwaukee Brewers in making a social statement; the Brewers elected not to play today as a protest against the unwarranted police shooting incident in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The Milwaukee Bucks of the NBA were the first pro sports team to take this stance and call off their game, a playoff against the Orlando Magic. (The NBA then called off their entire slate of games for the day, as did the WNBA.) The Brewers and Reds will pick up their series tomorrow; presumably the M's and Padres will as well, though that has not yet been announced. Initial expectations are that a doubleheader will be played tomorrow.
The Mariners voted to join the protest this afternoon and Kyle Seager, Shed Long, and Marco Gonzales met with Padre players Manny Machado, Austin Hedges, and Tommy Pham to clarify the situation.
There are serious issues in this country. For me, and for many of my teammates, the injustices, violence, death and systemic racism is deeply personal. This is impacting not only my community, but very directly my family and friends. Our team voted unanimously not to play tonight— Dee Gordon (@FlashGJr) August 26, 2020
The unrest in Kenosha began with the shooting of Jacob Blake, an African-American man, last Saturday evening. Blake was entering his car, in which his three children sat, when a Kenosha police officer, Rusten Sheskey, shot him multiple times in the back, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down and severely wounded in other areas. Prior to shooting him, the police had also punched and tasered Blake. Police claim Blake was threatening them with a knife when he was shot, which is a dubious claim given the nature of Blake's actions and how he was shot. Blake's attorneys say he was attempting to de-escalate a domestic incident when the police assaults began.
The Kenosha police department has placed Sheskey and the other officers involved on administrative leave. Protests have erupted calling for the officers to be fired and be charged with criminal actions. Protesters have confronted police ever since the news of the shooting broke. A teenaged white-supremacist with an AR-15 shot three and killed two of the protesters; he was not pursued by local police but was taken into custody without violence after returning to his home state of Illinois. President Trump has threatened to unleash his anonymous and unaccountable Federal secret police force, last seen in Portland kidnapping protesters off the street in response to graffiti on a Federal courthouse, on the citizenry of Kenosha as the protests continue.
The Mariners have the most African-American representation of any major league team, with nine players on the active roster/injured list—Long, Kyle Lewis, Taijuan Walker, Justin Dunn, J.P. Crawford, Dee Gordon, Carl Edwards Jr., Aaron Fletcher, and Justus Sheffield—plus Mallex Smith, currently at the Tacoma satellite operation. The club itself has offered its support of the players' decision not to play tonight:
Instead of watching us, we hope people will focus on the things more important than sports that are happening.— Dee Gordon (@FlashGJr) August 26, 2020
- Dee Strange-Gordon
Enough is enough pic.twitter.com/Rhs0hbLVMN— Shed Long Jr. (@SLONG895) August 26, 2020
It’s about justice, equality, and understanding. Thank you to our @Mariners family for supporting us and standing up for what’s right.— Marco Gonzales (@MarcoGonzales_) August 27, 2020
I felt like this needs to be shared on here. pic.twitter.com/GwQHPJiEwL— Braden Bishop (@bradenbishop7) August 26, 2020
I love every single one of my guys, so proud to be apart of this group! @Mariners— Justus Sheffield (@Topsheff42) August 27, 2020
And from our friends at Lookout Landing:
If you are inspired by the Mariners' action tonight and looking for resources in how to help (or resources for mental health), here is a great compilation: https://t.co/8rXJf7IDKh— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) August 26, 2020
UPDATE: The Seattle Sounders have followed suit and decided not to play their MLS game tonight.