UPDATE: The mayor of Leominster has made his findings:
Leominster Police Officer John Perreault has been put on paid leave after an in-house investigation found that he yelled a racial slur at Red Sox player Carl Crawford during a recent minor league baseball game in New Hampshire.
There will be an additional investigation and formal hearings and stuff.
Notable: this is the first time city officias confirmed the identity of the officer in question. Thankfully, it was not the police officer who lost his son last year.
10:30 AM: Last week we learned that the guy suspected of yelling racist stuff at Carl Crawford was a police officer from Massachusetts and that the mayor of his town was investigating the alleged incident. Today we’re going to hear what happened with all of that:
Findings of an investigation into claims that a Leominster police officer directed racist remarks at Red Sox outfielder Carl Crawford are expected to be revealed today at a news conference.
Mayor Dean Mazzarella said yesterday afternoon he plans to hold the news conference at 11 this morning to discuss his investigation into the incident, which is alleged to have taken place July 5 before a Portland Sea Dogs minor league game in Manchester, N.H.
More background here. This one is new to me:
The officer allegedly referred to Crawford as a Monday, which can be a derogatory term for a black person, according to UrbanDictionary.com.
You learn new slurs every day. But I gotta tell ya, if you’re basing your investigation on crap you find in UrbanDictionary, you may be reaching. Anyone have a better explanation for that term than the stuff at UD? Because that’s far less than enlightening. Esoteric slurs, even if they are offensive, tend to have more elaborate etymologies.
(thanks to Big Leagues for continuing to follow this for us)
A Solar Eclipse
by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
In that great journey of the stars through space
About the mighty, all-directing Sun,
The pallid, faithful Moon, has been the one
Companion of the Earth. Her tender face,
Pale with the swift, keen purpose of that race,
Which at Time’s natal hour was first begun,
Shines ever on her lover as they run
And lights his orbit with her silvery smile.
Sometimes such passionate love doth in her rise,
Down from her beaten path she softly slips,
And with her mantle veils the Sun’s bold eyes,
Then in the gloaming finds her lover’s lips.
While far and near the men our world call wise
See only that the Sun is in eclipse.
Over the weekend the World Umpires Association — the umpire’s union — launched a protest in response to what it feels is Major League Baseball’s failure to adequately address the “escalating attacks” on the men in blue. They were specifically upset that Ian Kinsler didn’t get suspended for his remarks in which he said that Angel Hernandez should get out of the umpiring business because he’s terrible. Apparently to umpires truth is no defense. In any event, they wore white wristbands Saturday night as a sign of solidarity or whatever.
Now that’s over, it seems. At least for the time being. The Association released this statement yesterday afternoon:
“Today, WUA members agreed to the Commissioner’s proposal to meet with the Union’s Governing Board to discuss the concerns on which our white wristband protest is based. We appreciate the Commissioner’s willingness to engage seriously on verbal attacks and other important issues that must be addressed. To demonstrate our good faith, MLB Umpires will remove the protest white wristbands pending the requested meeting.”
As many noted over the weekend — most notably Emma Span of Sports Illustrated — this protest was, at best, tone deaf. While officials are, obviously, due proper respect, a player jawing at an umpire is neither unprecedented nor very serious compared to, well, almost anything that goes on in the game or in society. At a time when people are literally taking to the streets to protest white supremacy, Neo-Nazis and the KKK, asking folks to spare thoughts for some people who sometimes have to take guff over ball and strike calls is not exactly a cause that is going to draw a ton of sympathy. And that’s before you address the fact that the umpires are not innocent when it comes to stoking the animosity between themselves and the players.
I wouldn’t expect to hear too much more out of this other than, perhaps, a relatively non-committal statement from Major League Baseball and a relatively detail-free declaration of victory by the umpires after their meeting.