A series of old anti-gay tweets from Washington Nationals shortstop Trea Turner, a former NC State University baseball player, have surfaced amid other reports of several Major League Baseball players’ slur-ridden online messages.
Turner, 25, sent the tweets in a series of replies to acquaintances and fellow NC State teammates when he was 18 and a college freshman, according to The Washington Post:
Two of Turner’s resurfaced tweets were replies in which acquaintances were called homophobic slurs. In another, the tweet reads “unless ur gay” in a reply to a former North Carolina State teammate. A fourth tweet suggests that if a woman working at a drive-through were to ask who the [faggot] in the back of a car was, it would be Turner. A fifth tweet reads, “Once u go black, u gonna need a wheelchair,” a line from the movie “White Chicks.”
Turner’s tweets have since been deleted and the Nationals’ president and general manager Mike Rizzo issued a statement.
“I have spoken with Trea regarding the tweets that surfaced earlier tonight,” Rizzo said in the July 29 statement. “He understands that his comments — regardless of when they were posted — are inexcusable and is taking full responsibility for his actions. The Nationals organization does not condone discrimination in any form, and his comments in no way reflect the values of our club. Trea has been a good teammate and model citizen in our clubhouse, and these comments are not indicative of how he has conducted himself while part of our team. He has apologized to me and to the organization for his comments.”
Turner himself also released a personal apology.
“There are no excuses for my insensitive and offensive language on Twitter. I am sincerely sorry for those tweets and apologize wholeheartedly,” Turner wrote. “I believe people who know me understand those regrettable actions do not reflect my values or who I am. But I understand the hurtful nature of such language and am sorry to have brought any negative light to the Nationals organization, myself, or the game I love.”
Turner’s tweets came to light amid other reports of several MLB players’ offensive tweets, including anti-gay messages from Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb and player Josh Hader of the Milwaukee Brewers.