May 27, 2016

‘Human Error’Determined in The Padres Gay Men’s Chorus incident

Last Saturday, as part of the "Out at the Ballpark" festivities at Petco Park, the Padres invited the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus to sing the National Anthem prior to a game against the Dodgers. The choir accepted the offer, but, just as they were about to begin performing, a recording of a woman singing the anthem played instead.
Here's video of the incident:
The choir was not given the opportunity to perform and some members claim they were heckled as they left the field.
The Padres issued a brief apology, which the chorus found to be inadequate. The team later determined nothing malicious had happened, though they terminated the employee responsible for the anthem mishap. The chorus asked the team to rehire that employee, however.
MLB invested the incident, and, on Thursday, they announced it was the result of "human error." Here is the league's statement:
Major League Baseball announced today that it has completed its investigation into the unfortunate events of Saturday, May 21st, when members of the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus had been scheduled to perform the Star-Spangled Banner before the Padres' "Pride Night" home game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Petco Park. The review, which was conducted by MLB's Department of Investigations, included a dozen interviews with individuals who were involved in the situation.
The Department of Investigations has concluded that the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus has performed the Star-Spangled Banner multiple times before a Padres game; that Saturday's regrettable situation was a product of human error; that the situation was exacerbated by the fact that the lead entertainment supervisor was involved in a car accident on Friday night and thus was unable to work on Saturday and handle his typical responsibilities; that employees involved in the matter were handling new duties with which they were insufficiently familiar; and that the employees involved had no malicious intentions and, in fact, universally relayed contrition for how the incident unfolded and the adverse impression that it created.
MLB received the full cooperation of Padres management, which expressed its deepest apologies. MLB believes that the Padres' efforts to remedy the situation, including its invitation to the Chorus to return to a future game to perform the National Anthem, are appropriate and has every expectation that the Club's longstanding record of inclusion will be evident in the future.
As unfortunate as this situation is, it's good to hear there was no malicious intent. It was a mistake, plain and simple. Hopefully the Padres and the Chorus can move forward with their relationship.

CBS Sports Writer

Mike Axisa joined CBS Sports in 2013. He has been a member of the BBWAA since 2015 and has previously written about both fantasy baseball and real life baseball for,,,... FULL BIO

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