Some of Major League Baseball's biggest stars are using their platform on social media to call for change and bring attention to the Black Lives Matter Movement.
Tim Anderson, Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, Marcus Stroman and more co-starred in a powerful video message, urging those listening to "be the change" and "acknowledge the pain of the black community."
The poignant post, lasting just under a minute and flashing familiar faces throughout, comes exactly three weeks after George Floyd was killed at the hands of a white Minneapolis police officer. Since then, protests and social unrest have swept the nation.
Here's a transcript of the players' words, calling on the fans that have cheered for them in the past to "cheer with us now."
We've been told that our peaceful pleas were not made at the right time, at the right place, in the right way. We've been told to "wait" but we remember when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. warned us that the word "wait" has almost always meant "never." We will wait no longer. We will make our voices louder for all of us who can and for all of us who could not. 8 minutes and 46 seconds is enough time to lift a knee, to do what is right, to say something, to acknowledge the pain of the black community. You have cheered for us, but we need you to cheer with us now. When we need you most. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. It's our cheer for change. It's your cheer for us. It's these cheers that will unite us. One team. One dream. Be the change.
Mentioning eight minutes and 45 seconds is a direct reference to the amount of time Derek Chauvin spent kneeling on the back of Floyd's neck. Video showing what transpired over the course of that time has since been seen by millions of people online across the globe.
As the group called out "Black Lives Matter," their words echoed as more of the players were added to the screen. When it was said a third time, 42 players were shown, surely an ode to Jackie Robinson and the number he wore during his career.
Other than Judge and Stanton, current and former Yankees to be featured in the video include Curtis Granderson, Aaron Hicks, Cameron Maybin, Andrew McCutchen and CC Sabathia.
Take a look at the video in full, shared by Stanton to his Twitter page.
Many of the faces you'll see in the video also shared its contents on their respective social channels, using the same caption. "One Team. One Dream #Players4BLM."
Ballplayers from the diamond weren't the only ones to take notice of the post. NBA superstar LeBron James shared it on social media as well.
These athletes and members of the black community are not the first to speak out since Floyd's death and certainly won't be the last. Stanton had already posted on his social media that "enough is enough" and that it will take everyone's help to make a change.
Similarly, Derek Jeter shared a statement, asserting that it is "time for racial hatred to end."
Virtually every team across professional sports has addressed the topic at hand since Floyd's death as well. The Yankees, first acknowledging the tragedy by posting a Nelson Mandela quote (that preaches love rather than hate), eventually posted a thorough statement – featuring a promise and a plan – to its social channels.
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