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Report: Umpire Angel Hernandez files discrimination lawsuit against Major League Baseball

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James Pilcher of the Cincinnati Enquirer is reporting that umpire Angel Hernandez has filed a discrimination lawsuit against Major League Baseball.  He also claims that there is racial discrimination in baseball’s promotion and post-season assignment policies. Hernandez claims that, despite being rated highly in evaluations, he has been passed over to work the World Series.

According to Pilcher, Hernandez hasn’t worked a World Series since 2005. He was also made a temporary crew chief in 2005 and 2012 but his four applications to become a permanent crew chief were denied.

As for racial discrimination, Pilcher notes that there are only 10 African American or Hispanic umpires of the nearly 100 umpires in Major League Baseball. The lawsuit says, “The selection of these less qualified, white individuals over Hernandez was motivated by racial, national origin and/or ethnic considerations.”

In the lawsuit, Hernandez says that MLB chief baseball officer Joe Torre has held a grudge against him. Torre called out Hernandez publicly in 2001, disagreeing with some calls he made. Hernandez says his reviews were based on public perception rather than objective analysis.

Hernandez reportedly filed two discrimination charges in June with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

While Hernandez doesn’t exactly have the best reputation among umpires, there’s no reason to outright dismiss any of the claims he’s making here as an outsider. MLB has also had diversity issues with front offices and coaches, as they are by and large made up of white men. To think that those practices would also extend to umpires is not a great leap.

Brewers reliever Josh Hader in hot water over racist, homophobic tweets from 2011-12

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Brewers reliever Josh Hader didn’t have a good night. He gave up four hits and a three-run homer to put the National League in a big hole in the All-Star Game. That’s the kind of thing that has to stick with you.

Oh, and he was also revealed to be a SUPER BIG racist, misogynist and homophobe. That’s gonna stick with him too, and may land him in trouble with Major League Baseball.

Someone decided to dig through Hader’s Twitter history this evening and when they did they found some ugly, ugly stuff in there from back in 2011-12.* Hader was found to have used the n-word, liberally. He said “I hate gay people.” He said some super misogynistic stuff about wanting a woman who will cook and clean for him, among other pretty damn vile things. There were multiple references to cocaine. He said “I’ll murder your family” to one person and made some total non-sequitur tweet simply saying “KKK.” You name a social media etiquette line that one can cross and Hader not only crossed it, but he totally and gleefully trampled over. If you want to see that vile stuff you can see it over at The Big Lead, which screen-capped it. I presume Hader has deleted them by now.

The news of Hader’s old, unearthed tweets bubbled out as the All-Star Game was going on, and reporters met Hader in the locker room right afterward for comment. Hader owned up to them — there was no “I was hacked” excuses offered here — saying that the tweets were a sign of immaturity when he was 17 years-old. He said he plans to apologize to his teammates, saying they don’t reflect on him as a person now. His quote: “No excuses. I was dumb and stupid.” Which, well, yes, obviously.

That may not be the end of it, however:

These tweets are old, Hader may be a different person now and people can do a lot of growing up between 17 and 24. But Major League Baseball is not happy tonight, I can assure you, that an ugly social media incident blew up during its biggest showcase of the regular season.

Will Hader be disciplined? Hard to say, given that Hader wasn’t even drafted yet when those tweets were made and given that MLB’s social media policy was not even in place then. But it would not shock me at all if more comes of this than Hader merely apologizing to his teammates. Stay tuned.

*There are several putative Hader tweets floating around Twitter right now of a more recent vintage. Hader has locked his account, however, and they cannot be confirmed, and many people who were able to access his account before it was locked said those tweets were not there before, with the suggestion that they were Photoshopped. We are neither in the position to — nor do we have the inclination to — verify which of Hader’s tweets are legitimate and which are fabricated. We know, however, that there is more than ample, awful stuff that he has owned up to and we’ll leave it at that for now.