Alex Cobb: 'We need to find a way ... of mending the two sides rather than picking a side' after Orioles change mind, don't play - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Alex Cobb: ‘We need to find a way … of mending the two sides rather than picking a side’ after Orioles change mind, don’t play

Photo Credit: Joy R. Absalon

After initially deciding to play the scheduled game against the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday night at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida, the Orioles decided not to. An announcement from the team came shortly after the scheduled 6:40 game time.

“After continued reflection and further dialogue, Orioles players have decided to not play tonight’s game against the Rays as they join athletes around the country in expressing solidarity with victims of social injustice and systemic racism,” the statement read.

The Orioles had a scheduled team meeting and, after that, manager Brandon Hyde had a video conference call where he reported that the players were going to play.

During batting practice, players talked and saw that five other games had been postponed. When they returned to the clubhouse, the players had a meeting among themselves.

“Our guys expressed more of their thoughts on the situation, and I think there was a lot of guys hurting in the room,” Hyde said. “They decided. Our team decided that they would not like to play tonight.

“I came in the room, and we discussed it a little bit more, and told them I was going to support any decision they made. They knew that, and that’s when they decided.”

After the team meeting, Hyde called Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash to tell him of the decision.

“He was extremely supportive, extremely patient, handled extremely first-class, like he always is,” Hyde said. “He totally understood.”

Orioles starting pitcher Alex Cobb said that other teams’ postponements didn’t play a part in his team’s decision, and he wanted a unified stand.

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“The last thing we wanted was for anybody to go out there with a heavy heart and not fully dedicated to the game,” Cobb said. “If it helped some people grieve tonight, if it helped some people deal with the situation we’re dealing with as a society, that’s all you can ask for.”

It’s a difficult issue for Cobb, who has four Black teammates and a brother who’s a decorated military hero as well as a police officer.

“I’m learning to not look at it through those lenses anymore,” Cobb said. “In the beginning, you had to be one side or the other. You had to be for our police or for our inner-city communities, and I just don’t think that was the right way to look at things.

“I will always respect every single person that puts on a uniform and goes out to protect us, but I also have had too many moments where I look into my teammates’ eyes or my friends’ eyes that I can see that they’re dealing with some real struggles and that their hearts are heavy, and we need to find a way to start the conversation of mending the two sides rather than picking a side. I don’t know what that avenue is.

“It’s something that’s evolving each day. What we’re seeing in our communities and now with our athletes, where there was a lot of friction before, I think that it’s starting to mend a little bit. I think that’s a good first step. I pray that we’re able to find a way for everybody to just love everybody.”

Relief pitcher Dillon Tate, who is Black, talked about team unity.

“The guys are trying to stand as one right now,” Tate said. “Ultimately, we realize there’s a lot of pain. Guys are feeling hurt about the situation. We just want to stand with one another, and since one of us is feeling that way, or two of us, however many it may be, we’re all going to stand as one and make the same decision, so that’s why we’re not playing.”

There was plenty of baseball business to conduct on Thursday. A lineup wasn’t released until about 45 minutes before the scheduled start, and four player transactions had to be handled, including the activation of shortstop José Iglesias. It was natural to think that Hyde was overwhelmed.

“Not feeling sorry for myself in any way,” Hyde said. “I’m the leader of this team. It’s my job to support our players to the utmost, to communicate with our players as well as I possibly can and I feel that we’ve done that. I’m proud of our players. I’m proud how they’ve acted through this whole, difficult year.

“It’s been … there are a lot more people in the world having a more difficult time than I am, so I’m not one to feel sorry for myself in all this.”

Cobb lauded Hyde’s leadership.

“I can’t think of one who’d have to deal with one of these issues in one particular year,” Cobb said. “Handling it flawlessly, and every single day, it seems like there’s something new coming up that he’s had to deal with … I can see it weighing on him at times. I think today was emotional for him. Every single situation he’s handled with class and a lot of respect for everybody involved.”

Worn down at the end of a long two days, Hyde grew emotional at the end of the second media session in two hours.

“You lead the best way you can,” he began to say. “I feel like I’ve been … sorry,” Hyde said, and could speak no more.

The Rays play in Baltimore September 17-20, and the game is expected to made up as part of that series, which concludes the Orioles’ home schedule.

The Orioles continue their road trip with four games against the Toronto Blue Jays in Buffalo beginning on Friday. It will be the first time the Orioles have played a game in a stadium not used by a major league team.

“I haven’t thought about tomorrow for one second,” Hyde said.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB

72 Comments

72 Comments

  1. Opus25No1

    August 27, 2020 at 7:03 pm

    You stupid pieces of excrement. Play the f-ing games!!!!

    • VICTORTEE

      August 28, 2020 at 8:48 am

      I bet you are a fan of Pres Chump, aren’t you?

  2. Mewarf

    August 27, 2020 at 7:09 pm

    I’m done! No more NBA, or baseball. I’ve been an avid fan for 50+ years. Even during these very dry years of loss after loss. You’re athletes not politicians and your job is to play. Could I simply decide to not work in protest and not lose my job? Well you’ve lost me! Good bye

    • Opus25No1

      August 27, 2020 at 7:11 pm

      Hear, hear.

    • PeppersDad

      August 30, 2020 at 10:37 pm

      I am sure they will lose sleep over your decision

  3. IrishAl81

    August 27, 2020 at 7:18 pm

    I believe the decision to cancel the game tonight was made in the heat of the moment and not fully thought through. But it does no good to over-react. We need to find ways to come together, not pull apart.

    • BirdsCaps

      August 27, 2020 at 8:26 pm

      I agree we need to come together. Sports usually provides an avenue for this. Stopping games for political reasons destroys common culture between people.

  4. Nellie

    August 27, 2020 at 7:19 pm

    I don’t think Cal Jr. can save this mess.

  5. Boog Robinson Robinson

    August 27, 2020 at 7:32 pm

    Reason? Most likely simple peer pressure. Fear of not canceling.

  6. BirdsCaps

    August 27, 2020 at 8:19 pm

    I purposely make sure I do not bring up politics in this forum because we need a place where all sides can come together and blow off steam. With that said, this is f&[email protected] horse&$”@! Average people can not and do not take an unexpected day off for political reasons. The teams “making” people reflect on the situation is demeaning (like they know what we need). Since the birds vote is unanimous to play and the Rays didn’t vote, either mlb or ownership voted for them. Does anyone have Any idea who made The call? While, I’ve watched the shooting many times And listened to commentary, I’ll follow my own rule and not bring up politics in a sports forum. It’s a shame the spoiled players,ownership, leagues can’t do the same.

    • Raveonjo

      August 27, 2020 at 9:38 pm

      My feelings exactly. This was my refuge from real life.

  7. dlgruber1

    August 27, 2020 at 9:04 pm

    EVERY major sports league, even the NHL for God’s sake, is being pressured by BLM to do this. They don’t realize they’re being extorted for millions of dollars. BLM the concept is fine. BLM the organization is nothing more than an America hating group that doesn’t give a damn about black lives. I try to stay clear of politics here but I wish Trump would tell the CEO’s of every company that has donated MILLIONS to BLM to demand to see results. ANY other time they’d invest that much money in their company heads would roll if no progress was attained. What’s really sad is how much good that money could’ve done for the black community. New or improved schools, day care centers, community centers, job training for things like HVAC, electricians, welders and other well paying in demand jobs could’ve been life changing for SO many who’ve never had that opportunity. This is an outrage and the damn media knows it and goes right along with it in their efforts to take Trump down.

  8. Raveonjo

    August 27, 2020 at 9:50 pm

    I keep comparing this year to 1968 to try to get a little perspective. In April, for the first time since the Civil War, the army was posted at the Capitol to prevent rioters from invading the building. The Senators’ opener at DC Stadium was postponed. One leader was murdered, another would be gunned down in June. We recovered from that dreadful year. Can we recover from this one?

  9. Bhoffman1

    August 27, 2020 at 9:51 pm

    Interesting that posters I never saw before when the chat was pure baseball come out now when the team protests what they see as continual unnecessary police violence against young black men. I’m not taking any sides but what does that say.

    • Bancells Moustache

      August 27, 2020 at 11:19 pm

      What that says to me, and I’m not going to take sides here either, is that MLB is making a massive mistake in embracing this stuff. Baseball’s fan base is very different from the NFL and NBAs. I question whether it can survive the backlash it will receive.

      • Birdman

        August 28, 2020 at 2:28 pm

        You’re probably right about the NBA fan base – I think it is younger and more racially diverse. Not so sure that MLB and NFL fan bases are all that different. When Kapernick, and then other NFL players, took a knee during the anthem, there was much speculation about a major backlash against the NFL, which didn’t really come to pass. Maybe the situation will be different this time, and MLB will take a big hit, but I doubt it. In any event, we won’t know until 2021, at the earliest.

  10. Bhoffman1

    August 27, 2020 at 9:56 pm

    As for baseball bringing a prospect up to pitch to one batter then sending him down what does that do for a kids confidence. That’s a Bucky move he practically ruined Gausman shuffling him
    back and forth to Norfolk even after he pitched well up here.

    • VICTORTEE

      August 28, 2020 at 8:47 am

      I didn’t know Buck was the general manager. Managers DO NOT decide who to call up and send down.

    • Bhoffman1

      August 28, 2020 at 9:05 am

      Buck had more power then Hyde and he discussed moves with DD I feel

  11. whiterose

    August 27, 2020 at 11:59 pm

    I am surprised to see that I am not in the minority here.

  12. millboy

    August 28, 2020 at 7:30 am

    So we missed a night of Oriole baseball…how dare those players have an opinion about what’s going on in the world around them. They are supposed to be here for our entertainment purposes only. Now let me stomp my feet a few more times. Guess I’ll turn on the Golf channel.

  13. Roenickstein

    August 28, 2020 at 8:20 am

    Virtue Signal received! MLB and the rest of pro sports can go to hell.

  14. Stevegr

    August 28, 2020 at 8:25 am

    What a bunch of BS! Like playing or not playing a friggin baseball game has anything to do with the real world! Just do your damn job. These guys don’t get it. They are just entertainers. Nobody cares about your politics. In this case we don’t even know all the facts yet, but by golly everyone is up in arms again and ready to protest.

    • VICTORTEE

      August 28, 2020 at 8:49 am

      A cop shot someone 7 TIMES IN THE BACK!!!!! What additional facts to you need?

      • Stevegr

        August 28, 2020 at 9:07 am

        He was shot in the back after fighting with the police, then ignoring their instructions and reaching in his car. That will get anyone shot regardless of race….you know, additional facts like that.

        • Boog Robinson Robinson

          August 28, 2020 at 10:31 am

          Facts don’t seem to matter anymore.

    • CalsPals

      August 28, 2020 at 9:34 am

      Or the warrant out for his arrest, or walking around the front of the car with a KNIFE in his hand…

    • Bhoffman1

      August 28, 2020 at 11:20 am

      Is this proof on video that he was walking around with a knife in his hand. I heard the knife was in the car. Do you have to shoot 7 times in the back ?

    • CalsPals

      August 28, 2020 at 12:41 pm

      Saw it in a video…go O’s…

      • Birdman

        August 28, 2020 at 1:41 pm

        Please provide a link to that alleged video. According to account that I read from a reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, there is no clear video evidence that Blake was brandishing a knife. Apparently, after he was shot 7 times in the back, a knife was found on the floor board of Blake’s vehicle.

    • CalsPals

      August 28, 2020 at 1:44 pm

      Because he dropped it, watch the video that was on TV, slow it down, full screen, kinda looks like an eagle talon, hooked blade…go O’s…

    • CalsPals

      August 28, 2020 at 1:45 pm

      He looks more like he is trying to conceal it vs brandishing it…go O’s…

  15. Diamondguy

    August 28, 2020 at 8:43 am

    I am trying to be patient about this mess. However, my patience with MLB is growing thin! All I can say is that I refuse to watch football due to the player taking knees to our great nation’s national anthem! I hope that I don’t loose baseball too! I agree with most, I can’t just not go to work because of my political views! God bless the USA!

    • VICTORTEE

      August 28, 2020 at 8:51 am

      Learn to spell Cletus. It is “LOSE”, not “LOOSE”. Are you a home “skooled” redneck Chump supporter?

      • Jbigle1

        August 28, 2020 at 9:22 am

        Victor give it up. You’re the same clown who came on here and called Mike Elias the “boy genius” for about 6 months.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 28, 2020 at 2:26 pm

        Chump rhymes with Trump .. I get it …. Clever

    • Hallbe62

      August 28, 2020 at 2:01 pm

      Lighten up Victortee. He made 1 spelling mistake and you react like a 12 yr old.

  16. Bhoffman1

    August 28, 2020 at 9:14 am

    The last time I looked athletes pay taxes like all of us and have a first amendment right to protest. I remember Jackie Robinson being upset before he died that there were no black managers in baseball. Muhammad Ali protesting a unjust Vietnam war. They are privileged yes with the money they make for shooting a basketball or hitting a baseball but since I’m not black I can’t exactly feel what they feel but I do feel they have a responsibility to their community not just to us fans who missed a night of baseball

    • Raymo

      August 28, 2020 at 10:31 am

      Bruce, I often disagree with your comments but today I back you 100%. As entertainers, they have a large megaphone available to spread their message and it’s their civic duty to use it.

  17. PrayinForReign

    August 28, 2020 at 9:18 am

    I wonder if they still got paid for choosing not to play last night. Me thinks so. Some protest -walking away from a child’s game any one of us would still love to play – AND getting paid for it. This whole season should be scrapped…

  18. TxBirdFan

    August 28, 2020 at 9:27 am

    There’s a lot of new posters on this BASEBALL site. I don’t understand these shootings and something definitely has to change, but not showing up to play games is creating division, not solutions. I’d rather see these ball players walk in the shoes of a policeman for awhile, to understand how dangerous it is to put their lives on the line, for a whole lot less money, and then offer up solutions. That would be constructive!

    Ok – back to BASEBALL! I’m hoping J. Means can toss 5-6 innings and look like the guy we saw last year.

    • CalsPals

      August 28, 2020 at 8:04 pm

      Unfortunately I think we’re seeing the real Means, 4 innings, two HR’s…I think we’ve seen his best yr…go O’s…

    • TxBirdFan

      August 28, 2020 at 9:06 pm

      I was afraid of that CalsPals!

  19. millboy

    August 28, 2020 at 9:55 am

    It will be interesting to see how the trade deadline shakes out this year, not just for O’s but all of baseball

  20. millboy

    August 28, 2020 at 9:58 am

    As good of a manager that Buck was, I also never understood the way he used Gausman…riding the Norfolk shuttle the way he did

  21. Massmonster

    August 28, 2020 at 10:50 am

    I agree with a previous comment the call was made not by the players( Believe the manager spoke the truth when he said the vote was unanimous to play 30 min before. game time) Thus making the gesture meaningless.. It was orchestrated by MLB had to be cause all the team’s that didn’t play on Wendsday played on Thursday and the teams that played on. Wednesday all postponed on Thursday. not coincidental orchestrated by MLB

  22. mmcmillan1123

    August 28, 2020 at 10:59 am

    I agree with Cobb’s statement that we have to see and understand both sides of this terrible mess our country has gotten into. There are two sides to every story. I agree with the players deciding to sit this game out. They are high profile people and they have gotten our attention and caused us to think. I’m sure that the clubhouse is a democracy, that they took a vote and everybody went along with the majority. That’s how our country is supposed to work. I’m truly disappointed that baseball was not played last night but support their decision to do so. You can’t compare playing baseball to having a regular job. Do you think the players enjoy being vilified like they are being today? It takes courage to make a stand and admire them for it even if I don’t agree with it. I’m not black so I can’t say what I it feels like to watch unarmed people getting shot on TV over and over again. I’m not a policeman so I can’t say what it feels like to put your life on the line everyday. Police Departments and the black communities all over the country need to be talking among themselves and to each other on how to prevent this violence to keep happening. There is no black and white or right or wrong answer but a lot of gray. Thanks MLB players for shedding light and attention on this matter

    • CalsPals

      August 28, 2020 at 12:45 pm

      My sons in the Army & a cop, it’s scary, all things aside I couldn’t just not show up for work because I was upset about everything going on, I’d get fired, they should’ve played, do whatever the hell you want on YOUR time…go O’s…

    • Hallbe62

      August 28, 2020 at 2:06 pm

      Hey Cals

      God Bless your Sons and keep them save always !

      Go O’s

    • CalsPals

      August 28, 2020 at 4:19 pm

      I didn’t write that well, one son, in the Army & a cop, thanks so much…go O’s…

  23. willmiranda

    August 28, 2020 at 12:13 pm

    I hope we can agree that we think justice is a good thing and all justice is social because it involves people giving each other what they deserve. I also hope we can agree that the best teaching is by personal example. Professional athletes owe many people a heck of a lot. I will only speak of what they owe me as a fan, one of thousands and millions of people to whom they are indebted for fame, fortune, and a life every child dreams of. Whether I watch you, Athlete, in person or by media, I make your life possible. What do I ask in return? Reliable entertainment. I do not ask you for religious instruction or profound moral guidance. Other people have given their lives to providing that. And, frankly, I think you would be wise to consult them about serious issues. Yes, popularity has given you power. But power does not imply wisdom. In fact, it is often quite the opposite; people turn to physical and emotional power when reason fails them. Anyway, Athlete, when you deprive people of the relaxation provided by your one extraordinary God-given talent, you are cheating them because you have already been paid for it. And many people. unlike you, did not discover just yesterday that the world has suffering, evil, and injustice because they have lived with it all their lives. Those are the people, Athlete, whom you deprive of one of their few affordable pleasures. And you say you are giving us a lesson in justice!

  24. Mikepete73

    August 28, 2020 at 1:30 pm

    baseball is a dead sport.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 28, 2020 at 3:54 pm

      That my man, was the nastiest thing said on this site today! Blasphemer!

  25. Mikepete73

    August 28, 2020 at 1:34 pm

    these scumbags said not one word about Cannon Hinnant. disingenuous p.o.s. bye bye orioles forever.

  26. Mikepete73

    August 28, 2020 at 1:44 pm

    this guys are backing the mob. the mob that doesn’t even watch baseball anyways. thats who they are backing. they think that they should do this and quiet the mob, it might make some diehard fans angry but they think that us idiots will be mad for a couple days but then go back supporting them. well thats not going to be the case we aren’t coming back and when they are working at Walmart stocking shelfs because baseball is dead they will regret it then. people are tired of having political statements pushed on us everywhere we turn.

  27. cedar

    August 28, 2020 at 2:22 pm

    For those clamoring about players not doing anything here is a link for you to review.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.cnn.com/cnn/2020/08/28/us/mlb-players-donate-salaries-jackie-robinson-trnd/index.html

    Meanwhile I ask you to watch some of the player interviews, see their emotions and in some cases tears and then decide if they are taking a political stance on an issue that affects millions of people.

  28. PC in OC

    August 28, 2020 at 4:21 pm

    I can not believe, some of the comments, that some of you have made. First of all, Let me start with Hollywood. They should stick to
    Making Pictures, ( They can not, even do that right ) instead of making these asinine comments about our President, and as far as Mr Chump is concerned, You better start going to church and say about 100 “ Hail Mary’s “ that Biden doesn’t become President. That’s all I’m going to say about that, because if he does, you all R going to want to kiss Trump’s feet. As far as no Black Managers, before Jackie Robinson died, How about hiring a manager, because he is the one, best suited for that job. Not because of the color of his skin

  29. PC in OC

    August 28, 2020 at 4:36 pm

    Did not finish. I don’t know all the facts, but if he was going for a knife ( white or black) I might have shot him 8 times. Believe me why I say I’m not a racist. With that being said, White or Black, If you didn’t do anything wrong, you don’t have anything to worry about! As far as boycotting the game, last night, what did that prove ( NOTHING) it just gives those Assholes, who are violently protesting, more ammunition to continue to do, what they are doing. I believe and have always believed that Black lives Matter, but so Do White Lives. I see and hear about all of you Athletes

  30. PC in OC

    August 28, 2020 at 4:41 pm

    About all you Athletes, donating to the Black Lives matter Cause, how about donating some money,to the people,who have lost their businesses and will never Re open and who never deserved any of this!!

    • Birdman

      August 28, 2020 at 4:55 pm

      Do you mean the hundreds of thousands of people who have lost their businesses due to Trump’s grossly incompetent handling of the pandemic?

    • Bhoffman1

      August 28, 2020 at 6:24 pm

      Right on Birdman, 4 per cent of the worlds population, 25 per cent of the worlds deaths. No mandated Federal plan. No other economy in the world has been hurt as much as ours during the pandemic. Prediction over 300,000 deaths by December. The Chinese flu as Trump called it has killed under 5,000 in China. I really think this site should be for baseball only but a lot of haters came out today . I think it’s alright to not like moves this team and organization might make but to attack their the players for protesting and shutting down one night with such hate is a bit much

    • dlgruber1

      August 29, 2020 at 3:24 am

      If you seriously are naive enough to believe under 5000 have died in China then I’m sure you must also believe that the protests throughout the country are all peaceful and that AntiFa is just a bunch of Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts who are a little older now. Wow!!

  31. BirdsCaps

    August 28, 2020 at 7:34 pm

    The comment section is endorsing candidates ,backing causes, and discussing policy. Congrats to the players,coaches,owners,etc. You have officially ruined sports! I study/follow policy, economics, and philosophy constantly and need places like this forum to get away from it. Now there’s just about nowhere to hide.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 28, 2020 at 7:49 pm

      Stephen, I have always tried to keep politics out of this space, but I have to report what the news is. In the past, I’ve covered politics, and I much prefer covering sports.

      • BirdsCaps

        August 28, 2020 at 9:02 pm

        Hey Rich,
        The comment wasn’t directed at you. It was directed at the athletes, coaches, and executives that started the unholy alliance of sports and politics. The comments section (I’m sure it’s all forums not just this one )devolved into tribe vs tribe just as I knew it would when things got political. It is/was the news of the day, so it had to be reported. Keep up the good work Rich, I Enjoy your articles!

  32. PC in OC

    August 28, 2020 at 7:58 pm

    Hey Bhoffman, I’m not attacking anyone. After hearing some of the stupid comments being made, I had to say something. These players are being paid big Bucks, to play baseball and if they are going to protest, they should do it on their time, not ours. They are not politicians, they are supposed to be baseball players. If I can’t go and sit in my box seat and watch a game and have a lot of fun doing that, then I should be able to see the game on TV. It may have been one game, but I’m pretty sure there will be more. I feel sorry for all of these people, getting killed. In the beginning, I was all for what was going on, but not any more. What really makes it sad, is, that it is no longer. about Floyd. As far as your statistics go, we have more cases and we have more deaths , because we are testing more. And, If it wasn’t for Trump, We would now have, double the amount of deaths. And Yes, It is a Chineses Virus. At least it started that way, now it’s spread all over the world.

  33. PC in OC

    August 28, 2020 at 8:12 pm

    And this is for the Birdman. What is a damn shame, is, if Trump came out for the Cure for Cancer today, you would still find a way, to put him down. Get Real, If you think Trump was the reason, for all of those business’s being destroyed, then you must work for the media. Get Your Facts Straight, before you make a another stupid comment, like that. Ok, that’s it for me. Let’s now play some baseball!

  34. PC in OC

    August 28, 2020 at 9:28 pm

    I keep reading some of your comments and I’m getting this ugly feeling, I’m now addressing, Victortee. How about showing some respect for our President, It’s President Trump, not Chump, Ok, Chump!! And guess what, He Is going to win again. So Get used to it.

    • CalsPals

      August 29, 2020 at 8:48 am

      I agree with you on this, no has respect for the position anymore, I’ve had presidents that I’ve not liked, but NEVER disrespected his position…go O’s…

  35. PC in OC

    August 28, 2020 at 9:32 pm

    Hopefully, We have now, got everything off of our chest!

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