Cleveland Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer accused Major League Baseball's Office of the Commissioner of censoring his conservative political views while simultaneously encouraging other players to be politically active.
Bauer made the accusation in a tweet, apparently following a meeting with the league. The way professional sports leagues handle political expression has been under higher scrutiny since NFL players protesting the national anthem created a nationwide controversy.
"Just had a meeting encouraging all players to take a stance and be leaders politically," Bauer tweeted. "Here's my stance. I find it disingenuous that @mlb commissioners office would encourage this when they've specifically tried to censor me for sharing my opinion on the matter. #RiseUp."
Just had a meeting encouraging all players to take a stance and be leaders politically. Here’s my stance. I find it… https://t.co/yN9kW56Kw1— Trevor Bauer (@Trevor Bauer)1520544243.0
One user asked Bauer if the MLB was the reason he had been relatively quiet on Twitter during the offseason:
@Melani424 @MLB Almost like I wasn’t allowed access to my twitter account for a while 🤔🤔— Trevor Bauer (@Trevor Bauer)1520545018.0
Bauer did not elaborate on how or why specifically he had been censored, and Major League Baseball has not yet commented on the accusation.
Bauer's political commentary
On multiple occasions, Bauer has stirred up his followers with political viewpoints, and he sometimes engages them in online confrontations.
In February 2017, Bauer tweeted his frustration that liberally-slanted articles were showing up in Apple News and on his Twitter feed:
"Really annoyed that @Apple and @Twitter continue to flood my phone with liberal slanted anti Trump articles. fair and equal reporting? No?" Bauer wrote.
The tweet received thousands of replies, many from people who disagreed with Bauer. Sometimes, he made simple statements of his opinion ("I've long wanted a president who didn't fit the current political system. A non politician") and other times he attacked his detractors directly ("You're welcome to quit life. We won't miss you," Bauer wrote to one user.).
In January 2016, during a Democratic presidential debate between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, Bauer tweeted that he was "So sick of hearing that the rich people in this country are the problem and we don't pay our fair share. Block button is still ready."
That tweet also resulted in some extended "discussions" between Bauer and his ideological opponents on the site.