The Toronto Blue Jays suspended outfielder Kevin Pillar two games for using an anti-gay slur during a game against the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday.
The Blue Jays announced the unpaid suspension Thursday, after Pillar issued a statement in which he apologized and said he was “completely and utterly embarrassed” by the incident.
“In no way is this kind of behaviour accepted or tolerated,” the Blue Jays said in a statement.
Pillar was caught on television replays yelling a derogatory slur at Braves pitcher Jason Motte, part of a brief but heated exchange after Motte made an arguably quick pitch to strike out Pillar.
“I used inappropriate language,” Pillar said in his statement. “By doing so I had just helped extend the use of a word that has no place in baseball, in sports, or anywhere in society today.”
Pillar said he apologized to Motte, to the Braves and their fans as well as the LGBTQ community “for the lack of respect I displayed.”
In 2012, the Blue Jays suspended infielder Yunel Escobar three games for an anti-gay slur he wore on the black patches beneath his eyes. Escobar is now the Angels’ third baseman.
Pillar, 28, grew up in the San Fernando Valley and played at West Hills Chaminade High and Cal State Dominguez Hills.
3:35 p.m.: This article has been updated with the announcement of a two-game suspension the Blue Jays gave to Kevin Pillar.
This article was originally published at 12:50 p.m.