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Baltimore Orioles Center Fielder Adam Jones Victim Of Racism At Fenway Park

Baltimore Orioles Center Fielder Adam Jones Victim Of Racism At Fenway Park

Monday night the Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles played game 1 of their series, after the game Orioles Center Fielder Adam Jones claimed he was a victim of racist comments.

Given the nature of the subject all of the following here will be facts, no opinions here unlike the rest of our content. So with that, most of the following will be quotes from Jones, the team, and others involved in the situation with some facts inserted to give context.

Jones talked to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale and Boston Globes Nick Carfardo after the game, Jones said he had racist taunts yelled at him and fans threw peanuts at him while he was in the dugout.

“A disrespectful fan threw a bag of peanuts at me,” Jones said via USA Today. “I was called the N-word a handful of times tonight. Thanks. Pretty awesome.”

Jones also said this wasn’t the first time something like this has happened to him at Fenway Park, but this was his worst experience yet.

“It’s different,” he said. “Very unfortunate. I heard there was 59 or 60 ejections* tonight in the ballpark. It is what it is, right. I just go out and play baseball. It’s unfortunate that people need to report to those type of epithets to degrade another human being. I’m trying to make a living for myself and for my family”

*According to Boston Red Sox Team President Sam Kennedy the team ejected 34 fans from Monday’s game. One was for throwing the bag of peanuts, and one for taunting a player, although the Red Sox would not comment on which player as it is unknown right now. 

“It’s unfortunate. The best thing about myself is that I continue to move on, and still play the game hard. Let people be who they are. Let them show their true colors.”

The fan who threw the peanuts was ejected, but Jones wants more to be done against this behavior. Photo of security looking for the thrower is below.

“It’s pathetic,” he said. “It’s called a coward. What they need to do is that instead of kicking them out of the stadium, they need to fine them 10 grand, 20 grand, 30 grand. Something that really hurts somebody. Make them pay in full. And if they don’t, take it out of their check. That’s how you hurt somebody. You suspend them from the stadium, what does that mean? It’s a slap on the wrist. That guy needs to be confronted, and he needs to pay for what he’s done.

“At the end of the day, when you throw an object onto the field of play, the player has no idea what it is. What if something hit me right in the eye and I can’t play baseball anymore. Then what? I just wear it? No. Things like that need to be handled a little more properly, in my opinion.”

Jones had more comments on Tuesday with the rest of the media now aware of the situation they wanted to follow up with him and ask him a few more questions to elaborate on his thoughts and how his meeting went with the Red Sox who have since apologized to him and the Orioles.

“Square up. Let’s fight and get it over with,” Jones said prior to Tuesday’s game at Fenway Park.

Jones could not recall exactly what time of the game he heard the taunt because he was focused on the actual game. He also doesn’t know if it was more than one person.

“Well it’s hard to look at someone when you’re focused on a potential ball hit in any direction so to pinpoint exactly who, that might damn be impossible,” Jones said. “To hear and understand what I heard, you got great hearing. We understand that we’re the road team and that the fans don’t need to welcome us. It’s all part of the competitive edge for the fan base to tell us opponents you suck, haha you struck out, various things on your performance, which is completely understandable in the lines of just how sports work and how fan bases work.

“I just heard that all night and was something that caught my attention — the N-word. I get certain reactions when someone says something clever versus really, really stupid and ignorant. Last night was not clever, it was ignorant so it caught my attention. By the time you look back, you can’t say who said what or when it was. I was just like, ‘OK, this is really [happening].”

Several members of the Red Sox organization met with Jones on Tuesday as alluded to earlier, this envoy including owner John Henry. In his media session he let the reporters know seeing the owner of the Red Sox meant a lot to him.

“I appreciated it greatly,” he said. “For Mr. Henry to take his time out to come and talk, to him and get ahead of it, to implement more security. … It’s a sporting event. It’s 40,000 people and to pick out a few people who decide to be ignorant. I just appreciate him coming in to talk to me face to face. He didn’t call or text me. He came face to face and expressed his disgust and he apologized on behalf of the whole city.”

Added Jones: “I have seen Mookie Betts, he tweeted at me. Price texted me this morning. It’s pretty awesome that they see it. It’s bigger than the game. These kind of things are bigger than the game. This a game. It isn’t life or death. There are bigger issues in the world than a baseball game. This is purely entertainment.”

Betts tweeted this afternoon the following:

Jones said what happens now is beyond him, but did acknowledge he appreciated the steps the Red Sox have taken.

“Well, fines, that is not in my realm, obviously I am worried about playing the game,” he said. “That is something that I think it would be individually assessed in certain ballparks, certain rules and regulations. I know that I met with Mr. Henry today and he said they are in the process — when things like this happen they are going to evoke a person’s, whoever’s tickets they are.

I know that tickets here are very sacred and generally passed down through generations, so they are hard to get. Stripping people their right to come to the ballpark, that would suck because this is one of the greatest venues to watch a sporting event and people would miss out on it because of pure stupidity.”

In terms of Red Sox players other than Betts several have speaken out publicly about this topic along with other players around baseball who have played in Fenway Park. Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. was one who was according to reporters present emotional when talking about the Jones situation.

Sox bench bat Chris Young who has come through the park on opposing team even said he had it happen to him when he came to Boston, but he also noted he thinks it is a widespread issue and not just Boston.

For all of you wondering how the Red Sox will respond to this in the future the team has already instituted a number of moves in conjunction with MLB to help prevent these instances from occurring in the future. Starting off tonight in the park there will be an increased security presence particularly in the bleachers. In addition the team has shared on its social media channels on how to contact said security in case they see/hear anything.

The team also released an official statement earlier on Tuesday addressing the situation.

Red Sox team president Sam Kennedy has also told the media that members of the Red Sox have acknowledged hearing racial slurs at Fenway Park.


(Fort Myers, FL, 02/19/14) Boston Red Sox owner, John Henry talks to reporters during Red Sox Spring Training on Wednesday, February 19, 2014. Staff Photo by Matt Stone

The Orioles have also responded to this situation through their manager Buck Showalter going on MLB Network to discuss the last 24 hours.

Major League Baseball Players Association and MLB Commisioner Rob Manfred addressed the situation via press releases.

In terms of outside players around the league CC Sabathia spoke with the media and said he and others expect this kind of behavior when coming to Boston. Others have likely spoken about it or will at some point tonight.

That is all the facts that are on the table as of right now, be the judge of all of it for yourself. There is a lot going on here with many voices coming in about this topic, a lot of different view points and opinions on this one.

Baltimore Orioles Center Fielder Adam Jones Victim Of Racism At Fenway Park
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