ST. PETERSBURG — Rays pitcher Blake Snell joined other professional athletes calling for change and “uncomfortable conversations” about racial injustices and the need to “do better” following the death of George Floyd.
Snell is the only Rays player so far to post direct comments; the team has not made a statement. A few Rays players reposted statements from major sports equipment companies — Willy Adames and Brandon Lowe from Under Armour, Daniel Robertson from Nike.
Here is the text of a Monday evening post on Snell’s Twitter account:
"I do not know what it is like to be discriminated against based on the color of my skin, however I do know that inequality and injustices are not right, whatsoever. At the end of the day, we are all on one team, and that is Humanity.
"In order to advance society, we, as a whole, need change and (to) do better. We need to have the uncomfortable conversations about racism, bigotry, police brutality and social injustice, in order to understand why my brothers and sisters are outraged.
"I have a heavy heart knowing that George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Eric Garner and countless others, should not only still be alive, but also protected and served as members of our society.
“I should not have friends and teammates that have to think deeply about the reality of not making it home to their loved ones because they fear that law enforcement has a lapse in judgement.”
Snell has had a newsy offseason, notably for his May 13 comments about not wanting to play this season for a reduced salary given the life-endangering risk of being infected by the coronavirus, and also for switching agents and signing on with hardliner Scott Boras. Among other benefits of the partnership, Boras said Snell would “have the opportunity to exercise the usage of all the resources of Boras Corp. so he can best express things in his way.”