Giants

Giants

Gabe Kapler made history Monday as the first MLB manager to kneel during the national anthem before the Giants' exhibition game against the A's in Oakland as a peaceful protest against racial and social injustices. 

Kapler was joined by several coaches and players in kneeling ahead of the Giants' 6-2 win. More joined Tuesday when he continued to kneel at Oracle Park, too.

Ahead of Opening Day on Thursday, Kapler further explained his reason to kneel in a long tweet, ending with "I reject hatred and bigotry in all forms." 

[BALK TALK: Listen to the latest episode]

Kapler will join Monte Poole and Logan Murdock immediately after Giants Postgame Live this Friday on NBC Sports Bay Area for an exclusive, in-depth look on what led to him kneeling on the latest episode of "Race in America: A Candid Conversation." 

The Giants' manager met with his players prior to Monday's exhibition game and explained his decision to kneel. He also made it clear he would support anyone's decision to kneel or stand and nobody would be judged either way. 

 

"I wanted to share what my plans were and I did that because I wanted them to know that I wasn't pleased with the way our country has handled police brutality. I told them that I wanted to amplify their voices and I wanted to amplify the voice of the Black community and marginalized communities as well," Kapler said. "I told them that I wanted to use my platform to demonstrate my dissatisfaction with the way we've handled racism in our country. I wanted to demonstrate my dissatisfaction with our clear systemic racism in our country.

"And I wanted them to know that they got to make their own decisions and we would respect and support those decisions. I wanted them to feel safe in speaking up, and so we had these kinds of discussions for the last several days and will continue to have them."

[RELATED: Kapler won't back down in the fight against racial injustice]

Unsurprisingly, Kapler and several Giants kneeling during the anthem led to an angry tweet from President Donald Trump on Tuesday morning. Kapler made it clear nobody will stop him or his players in standing up for what they believe in.

"I see nothing more American than standing up for what you believe in," Kapler said to reporters Tuesday. "I see nothing more patriotic than peaceful protest when things are frustrating and upsetting. Finally, there's nobody that should make us stop doing the right thing. It doesn't matter what leader says that they're not going to be following a game.

"What matters the most is that we're unwavering in trying to do what's right and that what guides our decision is standing up for people who need us to stand up for them."

Kapler hasn't said how long he will kneel or what will ever make him stop, but it doesn't seem like that will be happening any time soon.