Aaron Boone Encourages Yankees Players Speaking Out on Social Issues

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New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone says his players have been “awesome” in the way they have “stimulated and “encouraged” conversation in regards to the Black Lives Matter movement.

Gleyber Torres, Aaron Judge, Aaron Hicks, Giancarlo Stanton, James Paxton and Gary Sanchez are among the group of current Yankee players that have strongly spoken up in support of Black Lives Matter, and Boone applauds their efforts.

“I’m excited that they are expressing themselves, I always want our guys to feel that freedom if they want to voice something,” especially in this civil unrest social situation that we’re in,” Boone said this afternoon on conference call with the media.

“And I think what we’re going through as a country, I hope and believe that we’re all going to come out of it better for going through these times.”

“There’s so many people involved and listening and talking, and that’s something that we’ve already started to do within our organization, and it’s something we’ll continue to encourage.”

Judge is the first voice heard in a nearly minute long video put out by several MLB players in support of MLB. Stanton and Hicks, as well as retired Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia appear in the video. Torres posted a black square for #BlackoutTuesday on his Instagram.

Paxton did the same, as well as publishing a separate post in which he stated he understands that he will never fully

“My white privilege has allowed me to be oblivious to the true magnitude of oppression the black community faces,” Paxton wrote on the photo sharing social media platform.

“My silence to this point is also a product of my white privilege. I’m beginning to realize my privilege and ignorance. Time to listen, learn, and take action. #blacklivesmatter

In addition to applauding the members of his team that are speaking out for social justice, Aaron Boone says he will encourage further discussion of the deeper issues that go well beyond baseball. Boone believes these dialogues will take an already close knit team and bring them even closer together.

“Hopefully, the kind of culture that we want to have and the kind of culture that we want to create within our clubhouse is one where guys can be themselves,” Aaron Boone continued.

“Guys can bring up tough issues to talk about and when that happens I will encourage guys to speak their minds, speak their heart.”

“We are a close knit team, and I think that hopefully this is something that brings us even closer as brothers when we dig into some of the tough, deep issues that hopefully over time bond us even closer closer as a group, and I do believe that will be the case, and I will encourage that along the way.”

“Eight minutes and 46 seconds is enough time to lift a knee,’’ Stanton said in the #Players4BLM video

 

“To do what is right. To say something to acknowledge the pain of the black community. You have cheered for us but we need you to cheer with us now. When we need you the most. Black lives matter.”

Says Judge as he leads off the video: “We’ve been told that our peaceful pleas were not made at the right time at the right place, in the right way.”

“We’ve been told to wait, but we remember when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. warned us that the word ‘wait’ has almost always meant ‘never,’ the players say together.

“We will wait no longer. We will make our voices louder for all of us who can and for all of those who could not.”

For from Aaron Boone on this media call go here and here. For highlights of yesterday’s media call with Brian Cashman go here.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly contributes to WGN TV, Sports Illustrated, Chicago Now and SB Nation.

You can follow Banks, a former writer for Chicago Tribune.comon Twitter and his cat on Instagram.
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