After standing for the national anthem Monday in honor of the Memorial Day holiday, San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler remained in the clubhouse Tuesday to protest the direction of the nation after the school shootings that killed 21 in Uvalde, Texas, last week.
Only a handful of Giants players were on the field when the anthem was sung before Tuesday's game at Philadelphia, but it was unclear whether the move was one of solidarity with their manager. It is not uncommon for players to remain in the clubhouse during the national anthem as they continue pregame preparations.
It was the fourth time in five days Kapler decided to stay in the clubhouse. During his pregame session with the media before Tuesday's game, Kapler refused to indicate which way he was going to act.
"The protest was not about the anthem and I think I made that clear as well," Kapler said. "The landscape is ever-changing and these issues are not black and white. They require -- in my opinion -- a lot of thought and a lot of action. I don't know that it's necessary to answer questions about this on a day-to-day basis about whether I'm coming out for the anthem. I think it important to recognize that peaceful protest of any kind on important issues like gun control and in particular gun safety are important to me and I will continue to be expressing my thoughts going forward.''
Earlier Tuesday, Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi expressed support for Kapler's decision to protest, telling reporters on a video call, "I'm just thankful every day that I get to work with somebody who cares that much.
"I may not agree with everything he says or does on a personal level -- that may be true of other people -- but his passion, his thoughtfulness and his conviction over the last few days -- those are the same traits that made him the Manager of the Year last year and have made him such an effective leader for our team and our organization."
Zaidi said the Giants would continue to play the national anthem before their home games at Oracle Park, but emphasized that the organization "respects the rights and choices of Gabe, and all of our players and coaches and fans, to express themselves and their views peacefully in the way that they see fit."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.