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Report: Mets to Sign Catcher Bruce Maxwell, First MLB Player to Kneel During National Anthem

The Mets have agreed to a minor-league deal with catcher Bruce Maxwell, who was the first MLB player to kneel during the national anthem, according to Newsday.

Maxwell reportedly arrived in New York on Monday, and the deal is pending a physical and the catcher testing negative for the coronavirus. The deal would be Maxwell's first in affiliated baseball since the A's cut him at the end of the 2018 season. The 29-year-old spent last season playing baseball in Mexico.

USA Today's Bob Nightengale reports the Mets have been in contact with Maxwell for weeks about a deal.

Maxwell, who is Black and comes from a military family, gained national attention after he kneeled during the national anthem at A's games in September 2017 to protest racial injustice. The gesture had become more widespread throughout the NFL after then-49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling during the 2016 season. However, Maxwell was the only MLB player to take a knee prior to this season.

Ahead of last week's Dodgers-Giants Opening Day game, players Mookie Betts, Pablo Sandoval, Mike Yastrzemski, Hunter Pence and San Francisco's manager Gabe Kapler kneeled during the national anthem.