BOSTON (CBS) — Boycotts took place around the world of sports on Wednesday. The Red Sox and Blue Jays were not a part of it.
With the first one of those boycotts taking place at 4 p.m. ET, and with first pitch scheduled in Buffalo for 6:30 p.m., the teams didn’t have enough time to properly discuss potentially joining the movement.
“Wasn’t very aware of any of the baseball stuff until probably, literally before I was about to go out for the game. Probably just before stretch,” Red Sox outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. said after his team lost 9-1. “Me, personally, I had seen the basketball situation and stuff like that, but all the other stuff, it was late notice when I found out.”
In Major League Baseball, three games were not played out of protest for the shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The Reds-Brewers game in Milwaukee was the first one, followed by the Mariners and Padres and San Diego. The Dodgers-Giants game in San Francisco was also called off out of protest.
Bradley said he’s not entirely sure what the Red Sox would have done if their game had been scheduled to start later in the night and that he supports teams exercising their rights to protest.
“Possibly. I’m not sure. But it hasn’t been, I guess, brought to the overall team’s attention yet,” Bradley said. “Full support of it. Obviously, things are going to hit a lot closer location-wise and obviously it hits a lot closer African-American-wise as well. So there’s feelings, there’s a lot of things that go on and a lot of things that you think about.”
Bradley, the Red Sox’ only Black player, explained why he still wanted to play on Wednesday.
“You always think about it. I still felt like I wanted to be there for my team,” Bradley said. “Not saying they wouldn’t have supported me; I’m sure they would’ve supported me full-heartedly. I obviously think about it. You just never know.”
Blue Jays first baseman Rowdy Tellez, who belted two home runs during Wednesday’s game, said that his team plans to have a serious discussion on Thursday.
“We got wind of what was going on in baseball and basketball as our game was getting ready to start, so we really couldn’t make that decision,” Tellez told reporters, per The Athletic. “But we are going to discuss it as a team [Thursday] amongst our peers, our teammates, management and everybody within the Blue Jays organization that’s taking part. It’s something that definitely is a very heavy point in all of the world right now, so it’s something we need to discuss as a team moving forward.”
Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said, “I support whoever wants to not play.”
Red Sox manager Ron Roenicke said that he only briefly discussed the cancellation of the Brewers-Reds game with Bradley, but Bradley said he feels fully supported by the Red Sox organization.
“I have support. It’s not difficult for me to address it. I am the only Black person on this team, so I kind of feel like it’s my responsibility to address it in certain situations, just so people can see what I feel and the things that I think about,” Bradley said. “So I can take it on.”
Bradley expressed some hope that some progress continues to be made by those fighting against racial inequalities in America.
“I think voices are being heard,” Bradley said. “Hopefully changes are being made and we just have to continue to grow and continue to push forward and try to be better as individuals and together as well.”