One day after Sports Illustrated's Stephanie Apstein reported Astros assistant general manager Brandon Taubman shouted comments about closer Roberto Osuna at a group of female reporters, manager AJ Hinch addressed the incident ahead of Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday.
"I didn't know until the story came out," he said of the incident. "I'm very disappointed for a lot of reasons. It's unfortunate. It's uncalled for. For me as a leader in this organization...I take everything that happens in the clubhouse to heart. ...[you] should never feel like you're going to be uncomfortable or disrespected."
Hinch added, "I think we all need to be better across the board in the industry. I was disappointed."
Apstein reported Taubman shouted "Thank God we got Osuna! I’m so f------ glad we got Osuna!" at three female reporters in the Astros' clubhouse following their Game 6 victory on Saturday night to clinch the American League pennant.
In May 2018, Osuna was arrested on domestic violence charges while playing for the Blue Jays. The charges were dropped but MLB suspended Osuna for 75 games for violating its domestic violence policy. Houston traded for him shortly before his suspension ended.
After the publication of Apstein's story, the Astros released a statement calling it an "attempt to fabricate a story where one does not exist."
Sports Illustrated said on Tuesday that it "unequivocally stands behind Apstein, her reporting and the story, which was subsequently corroborated by several other media members present at the scene. Any implication that SI or any of its journalists would 'fabricate' a story in its detail or intent is both disappointing and completely inexcusable."
Later on Tuesday, Taubman released a statement to apologize for his comments on Osuna.
"I used inappropriate language for which I am deeply sorry and embarrassed. In retrospect, I realized that my comments were unprofessional and inappropriate," the statement said. "My overexuberance in support of a player has been misinterpreted as a demonstration of a regressive attitude about an important social issue."
When asked by a reporter how he would evaluate how the Astros handle people, Hinch said he's keeping his attention on the World Series.
"I don't think it's my job to evaluate that. The last 24 hours I've been pretty locked in on the Nats," he said.
Major League Baseball plans to investigate the clubhouse incident reported by Apstein and will interview those involved before commenting further.