Cubs' Addison Russell denies domestic violence allegations
Cubs shortstop Addison Russell Thursday denied allegations that he abused his wife Melisa, amid an MLB investigation into his behavior.
A friend of Russell's wife posted on social media Wednesday that Russell was ”cheating on [his] wife, mentally & physically abusing her.” Russell's wife, Melisa, had her own Instagram post that has since been deleted. The post accused Russell of cheating, but made no mention of abuse.
The posts drew MLB’s interest and created an ongoing probe into the matter.
“Any allegation I have abused my wife is false and hurtful,” Russell said in a statement on Thursday afternoon. ”For the well-being of my family, I'll have no further comment.”
Russell did not dress for Thursday’s game against the Rockies, which was not a disciplinary decision, according to the Cubs.
“Last night, we were made aware of a serious claim posted on social media about Addison Russell. We reached out to Major League Baseball, and following the protocol established by MLB, will fully cooperate with the Commissioner’s Office as it gathers pertinent facts. Addison will not be in uniform tonight to allow him to work through this matter,” the Cubs wrote in a statement.
The league instituted a Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Policy in August 2015 and any potential punishments handed out by MLB are done on a case-by-case basis.
According to the Sun-Times, MLB officials are expected to interview Russell's wife and the friend that posted the claims on social media.
Russell, 23, is in his third season with the Cubs and is batting .209 with three home runs and 19 RBIs in 54 games.