The move came in response to the recent mass shootings in Uvalde, Texas, and Buffalo. Several notable athletes – including Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr – have used their platform in recent days to advocate for action to end gun violence.
MLB’s social media accounts are typically used during games to show video highlights, share baseball stats, or share witty jokes about the action on the field with other accounts. On Thursday, that was replaced with posts like “Guns were the leading cause of death for American children and youth in 2020.”
Both accounts then posted a link to the source of their information.
“In lieu of game coverage, and in cooperation with the Tampa Bay Rays, we will use our channels to offer facts about the effects of gun violence,” the Yankees said in a statement. “The devastating events that have occurred in Uvalde, Buffalo and countless other communities across our country are unbearable tragedies.”
The Rays also released a statement saying the recent shooting “cannot become normal.”
“We all deserve to be safe — in schools, grocery stores, houses of worship, our neighborhoods, homes and America. The recent mass shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde shook us to the core. The Tampa Bay Rays mourn these heartbreaking tragedies that took the lives of innocent children and adults.
This can’t be normal. We can’t go deaf. We can’t look away. We all know that if nothing changes, nothing changes.”
The Uvalde school shooting was particularly personal for Ray’s aide, Brooks Raley, who is from Uvalde and still has family living in the town. He attended the school where the shooting took place.
The NBA’s Miami Heat also took a different approach to raising awareness and calling for change after the Uvalde shootings. Ahead of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night, the Heat held a moment of silence in memory of those killed – followed by a statement urging fans to call lawmakers and demand changes.
“The Heat urges you to contact your Senators by calling 202-224-3121 to leave a message requesting your common sense support for gun laws,” spokesman Michael Baiamonte read to fans, from to which some erupted in applause as he spoke.
The moment was also aired as part of ESPN’s televised coverage of the game.
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Miami-based AP basketball writer Tim Reynolds contributed to this story.
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https://abc13.com/new-york-yankees-tampa-bay-rays-uvalde-school-shooting-gun-violence/11900209/ NY Yankees, Tampa Bay Rays Twitter feeds after in-game gun violence after Uvalde shooting