The Orioles beat the Red Sox 5-2 at Fenway Park in Boston on Monday night to advance to 16-8 on the season and maintain their spot atop the AL East. But after the game, Baltimore center fielder Adam Jones was not in the mood to talk baseball. Rather, Jones—who was one of just 62 African-American players on opening day MLB rosters this season, according to USA Today—wanted to discuss the racial abuse that he was subjected to throughout the game.
"A disrespectful fan threw a bag of peanuts at me," Jones said. "I was called the N-word a handful of times tonight. Thanks. Pretty awesome."
Jones told reporters that he has faced racism at Fenway Park in the past. But he said Monday night was the worst example of it that he can remember.
"It’s different. Very unfortunate," he said. "I heard there was 59 or 60 ejections tonight in the ballpark. It is what it is, right. I just go out and play baseball. It’s unfortunate that people need to resort to those type of epithets to degrade another human being. I’m trying to make a living for myself and my family. It’s unfortunate. The best thing about myself is that I continue to move on and still play the game hard. Let people be who they are. Let them show their true colors."
Jones also talked specifically about the fan who threw the peanuts at him. USA Today spoke with Red Sox officials who confirmed that the fan was ejected from Fenway Park immediately after throwing the peanuts in Jones’ direction. But Jones, who referred to the fan as a "coward," said he thinks fans like that should face more severe punishment.
"What they need to do is that instead of kicking them out of the stadium, they need to fine them 10 grand, 20 grand, 30 grand," he said. "Something that really hurts somebody. Make them pay in full. And if they don’t, take it out of their check. That’s how you hurt somebody. You suspend them from the stadium, what does that mean? It’s a slap on the wrist. That guy needs to be confronted, and he needs to pay for what he’s done. At the end of the day, when you throw an object onto the field of play, the player has no idea what it is. What if something hit me right in the eye and I can’t play baseball anymore? Then what? I just wear it? No. Things like that need to be handled a little more properly, in my opinion."
On Tuesday morning, the Red Sox issued a formal apology to Jones and the Orioles through team president Sam Kennedy. The organization revealed it is conducting an investigation into what happened on Monday night:
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker also issued a statement on what took place at Fenway Park:
Jones and the Orioles are scheduled to spend the next three days in Boston to play out the remainder of a four-game series with the Red Sox.