Chicago White Sox second baseman Gordon Beckham apologized Saturday for scratching an inappropriate remark in the infield dirt earlier this week in an incident first reported by the Chicago Sun-Times .
When the White Sox were playing the Kansas City Royals on Monday night, Beckham scratched "GETS IS GAY! GB" in the dirt. Beckham said it was a joke directed at Royals second baseman Chirs Getz, a former teammate and a friend.
|Beckham says his infield scratching was misinterpreted, but he's sorry. (Getty Images)|
The Beckham apology comes shortly after gay slurs by Philadelphia Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson came to light earlier in the day, and earlier incidents involving Joakim Noah and Kobe Bryant.
"There just needs to be a greater awareness of when you're in the public eye," White Sox general manager Kenny Williams told the Chicago Sun-Times. "Something between two friends meant as a joke? Well, you're representing not just yourself, but your team, your sport, your family."
"I'm disappointed,'' Williams continued to the Sun-Times. "I know Gordon, the man, and I can't think less of him because I do know him. And I know he and Getz are friends, but we traded Getz and Josh Fields in the offseason (before the 2010 season) for Mark Teahen.
"But I'm just disappointed for this to come on the heels of the Kobe Bryant thing, and [Joakim] Noah, and, yes, a number of years ago, the issue with Ozzie [Guillen]."
Bryant used a gay slur toward a referee in an April game and later was fined $100,000 fine before apologizing the next day. Noah was fined $50,000 for directing an gay slur at a fan during the playoffs in late May. Guillen was fined and suspended for a similar incident in 2006 involving a member of the media.