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MLB Team Will Have 'Black Lives Matter' On Pitching Mound

Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer throwing a pitch.

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 28: Max Scherzer #31 of the Washington Nationals pitches in the eighth inning against the New York Mets on Opening Day at Nationals Park on March 28, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

With the much-delayed MLB Opening Day coming up this week, Major League Baseball teams have started to throw more support behind the Black Lives Matter movement. There have been persistent protests in Washington, D.C. since the death of George Floyd. The hometown Washington Nationals, the defending World Series champions, will be expressing their support for BLM on the field this weekend.

The Nationals start their season with a home stand against the New York Yankees at 7:08 p.m. ET on Thursday night. The three-game series will continue on Saturday and Sunday.

For Opening Weekend, the franchise has announced that #BlackLivesMatter will be stenciled on the pitcher's mound. With the Opening Day game on ESPN, and the Saturday contest on FOX at 7:15 p.m., that message will have some serious national airtime.

The first person to throw a pitch from that mound will be Dr. Anthony Fauci. The nation's leading epidemiologist and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease since 1984 has become a major national figure over the last few months.

The Washington Nationals are not alone in this stance. San Francisco Giants players, as well as manager Gabe Kapler, took knees during the national anthem ahead of an exhibition game the other night, the same protest conducted by Colin Kaepernick during his final year in the NFL. That demonstration drew the ire of President Donald Trump. “Looking forward to live sports, but any time I witness a player kneeling during the National Anthem, a sign of great disrespect for our Country and our Flag, the game is over for me!” he tweeted early the next morning. A number of baseball fans took to Twitter to voice their displeasure with the Giants' protest. The league's official Twitter account went right back at them, calling the protest peaceful, and not about "the military or the flag," and that "supporting human right is not political." [

The Nationals have announced that #BlackLivesMatter will be stenciled on the mound during Opening Weekend games.

— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) July 22, 2020

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