The Giants and Dodgers joined the NBA, WNBA and several other MLB teams on Wednesday in postponing their game at Oracle Park in the wake of the Jacob Blake shooting.
Sources confirmed the postponement to NBC Sports Bay Area shortly after 6 p.m., a few hours after Gabe Kapler spoke with the media. The Giants officially announced the postponement shortly thereafter. Kapler, who has been as vocal about inequality and police brutality as any manager or coach in sports, seemed during his daily session to be leaning toward postponement, but said it was a decision that needed to be made collectively by the team.
Later Wednesday, the Giants and Dodgers made a joint statement regarding the postponement.
“Throughout our country’s history, sport has been a powerful vehicle towards change. The Dodgers and Giants proudly join our players in the shared goal for a more equitable and just society.”
Players and coaches met in small groups during batting practice while Kapler talked with president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi, general manager Scott Harris, and veteran Tony Watson. After their meeting, the Giants retreated to their clubhouse, ending batting practice early. The Dodgers never took the field.
Earlier in the day, Kapler said he was paying close attention to what was going on around the country and praised the Milwaukee Bucks, who never took the court for their afternoon NBA playoff game.
"I think I've been pretty consistent. Some things I think are just bigger than sports, and I don't think it should require athletes needing to boycott playoff games to remind us Black lives matter and that police brutality is unacceptable and that systemic racism needs to be eliminated," Kapler said. "What I believe in most is speaking out and taking strong action based on your beliefs. I'm aware that the Bucks and now some other NBA teams are doing that, and I have the utmost respect for the players who are refusing to be silent about issues that are bigger than sports. Racism and police brutality are issues that we're not going to be silent about either."
The Giants and Dodgers have both been vocal about their support for equality over the last month, with Kapler continuing to take a knee during the anthem, along with several of his players. Clayton Kershaw, Wednesday's scheduled starter for the Dodgers, has been particularly outspoken among MLB stars.
The Bucks started the movement early in the day when they refused to play their playoff game against the Orlando Magic. The Bucks are the closest NBA team to Kenosha, Wisc., where Blake was shot repeatedly in the back on Sunday. The Brewers and Cincinnati Reds were the first MLB teams to postpone their games.