Fellow managers offer Gabe Kapler to support the protest

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Several of Gabe Kapler’s fellow managers are offering their support for his decision to avoid the field during the national anthem in protest after the shooting at a school in southwest Texas.

Kapler, manager of the San Francisco Giants, said Friday that he does not plan to be on the court for the anthem “until I feel better about the direction of our country.” I don’t expect it to necessarily move the needle. It’s just something I feel strong enough to take this step.

A day after Kapler’s comments, no uniformed Giants were on the pitch for the anthem before the team’s 3-2 loss to the Reds.

Nineteen children and two teachers were killed Tuesday at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. The attack came just 10 days after a racist-hate gunman killed 10 black people at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York.

Texas Rangers manager Chris Woodward said Kapler’s action was “courageous”.

“I think we’re all frustrated, especially in this country,” Woodward said. “Nobody’s happy. It’s not about which side you’re on. It’s just that we have to improve as a society. … I’m not really going to comment anyway whether or not I would what he did.

Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora said his former teammate Kapler spoke out on a number of topics and “for that, I’m proud of him. He’s a good friend of mine and kind of guy who I respect from afar for what he does, and if that’s what he does, good for him. I understand his reasons. He was very open about it and I know there’s a lot of people who will support him.

New York Mets manager Buck Showalter also said he respects “how Gabe feels and how he handles it.” Asked about Kapler, Philadelphia manager Joe Girardi replied, “It’s Gabe’s decision.”

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