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Oakland A’s bench coach Ryan Christenson apologizes for apparent Nazi salute

Oakland Athletics bench coach Ryan Christenson
Oakland Athletics bench coach Ryan Christenson
(Justin Edmonds / Getty Images)

Oakland Athletics bench coach Ryan Christenson has apologized for raising his arm in what looked like a Nazi salute during a postgame celebration.

Christenson made the gesture while greeting closer Liam Hendriks following his team’s 6-4 win over the Texas Rangers on Thursday.

Hendriks immediately pushed Christenson’s arm down, and cameras then showed him laughing and briefly raising his arm a second time.

Christenson faced criticism after video of the gesture circulated on social media.

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“I made a mistake and will not deny it,” Christenson said in a statement issued through the team. “Today in the dugout I greeted players with a gesture that was offensive. In the world today of COVID, I adapted our elbow bump, which we do after wins, to create some distance with the players. My gesture unintentionally resulted in a racist and horrible salute that I do not believe in. What I did is unacceptable and I deeply apologize.”

The A’s called the gesture “offensive” and apologized for it.

The Oakland Athletics sign Nathan Patterson to a minor-league contract after he throws a 96-mph pitch during a fan challenge in Colorado.

“We do not support or condone this gesture or the racist sentiment behind it,” the team said in a statement. “This is incredibly offensive, especially in these times when we as a club and so many others are working to expose and address racial inequities in our country. We are deeply sorry that this happened on our playing field.”

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Christenson, 46, played six years in the majors from 1998 to 2003. He later spent several years coaching in the minors before becoming bench coach for the A’s in 2018.


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