Craig Calcaterra

Blogger at NBC's HardballTalk. Recovering litigator. Rake. Scoundrel. Notorious Man-About-Town.

Hector Olivera’s administrative leave extended by two weeks

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Braves outfielder Hector Olivera was arrested in Virginia last week on domestic violence charges. Per baseball’s domestic violence policy, he was placed on paid administrative leave for one week while the league investigates the claims. As that week is just about up, the MLBPA and the league have agreed to extended his administrative leave for two more weeks.

This is much like what has happened in the Jose Reyes case, though that agreed leave is far longer for him. It’s likely, given how these investigations are proceeding — baseball seems to be waiting to follow on law enforcement’s actions to some degree — that the one-week period mentioned in the policy may be altered at some point in the future.

Because, really, if baseball is not prepared to act in any cases in a short period of time, there’s really no point in the one-week leave. The central problem baseball was likely concerned about — the optics of an under-investigation player appearing in uniform and on the field — is likely to be inevitable barring a change.

Curt Schilling makes a disgusting anti-transgender post on Facebook


This has got to be the final straw, right? Curt Schilling, ESPN’s baseball analyst who has been in trouble multiple times for his social media posts and comments, has once again stepped in it. Indeed, this may be his worst one yet.

It was a meme he shared on Facebook and under which he commented dealing with the issue of access to public facilities for transgender people and it contains a disgusting caricature of what, apparently, Schilling believes to be a transgender person. I won’t reproduce the meme he shared here, but you can see it if you’d like at OutSports, which brought this to the public’s attention. They also pass along his comments, which I presume he’ll soon delete. Schilling:

“A man is a man no matter what they call themselves. I don’t care what they are, who they sleep with, men’s room was designed for the penis , women’s not so much. Now you need laws telling us differently? Pathetic”

While many may feel that way, such sentiments are wholly ignorant of transgender people and their nature (note: they are people who just have to go to the bathroom sometimes like everyone else) and perpetuates stereotypes of a much-maligned class of people. There is an entire b.s. perpetuation machine backing these sorts of sentiments, by the way, smearing transgender people as deviants or threats when, in fact, there are no documented cases of people exploiting transgender non-discrimination laws to commit crimes. Of course, given Schilling’s track record, it is not necessarily surprising that he’s willing to buy into false claims and hyperbole which support his general disposition.

But even if you step away from the substance, it’s undeniable that public access for transgender people is a highly controversial issue at the moment, with North Carolina passing a restrictive law in this regard which has led to boycotts of the state by performing artists and travel restrictions for public officials who would visit North Carolina in their official capacity. Likewise, the NBA is currently considering taking next year’s All-Star Game out of Charlotte. No matter which side of this matter a person may fall, it’s highly doubtful that ESPN wants one of its top commenters wading into it at the moment, at least in as crass a manner as Schilling did.

Of course, Schilling has skated in the past and still makes seven figures talking about baseball for ESPN. One wonders if this will finally cause them to fire him or if he’ll continue to be teflon.

UPDATE: No substantiation yet found regarding Heyward/racial slur allegations


File this for now under “allegations by a few people,” but the allegations are enough to get ESPN officials to review game audio from last night’s Cubs-Cardinals matchup. The allegation: that fans in Busch Stadium could be heard taunting Cubs outfielder Jason Heyward with racial slurs.

The allegations, it should be noted, come from four people on Twitter, who claim that they heard the n-word being directed at Heyward via crowd mics on ESPN’s broadcast. The New York Daily News was the first to pass along the allegations made on Twitter. The St. Louis-Post Dispatch has a more in depth story on it, along with the information that ESPN is reviewing audio.

It’s indisputable that many in the crowd booed Heyward, who was making his first trip back to St. Louis since leaving the Cardinals via free agency this past offseason. For what it’s worth, Heyward didn’t complain about it at all, let alone mention anything particularly untoward about the booing. Rather, Heyward just brushed it off by saying that it just shows the fans missed him and, in that sense, it was almost a compliment if you look at it just so.

Whether it was just run-of-the-mill greetings to an ex-local player or something more remains to be seen.

UPDATE: At least one media outlet which reviewed video can find no evidence to support the Twitter users’ allegations. That came via the Comcast feed. When ESPN finishes its own review, we’ll obviously follow up.

UPDATE: More debunking. There has yet to be a confirmation of the allegations: