Texas Rangers pitcher Derek Holland explained a homophobic tweet that appeared on his Twitter page during Sunday night’s game against the Los Angeles Angels by claiming his account had been hacked, the Washington Post reported.
The tweet was directed at a heckler after he called Holland “a pathetic excuse” for a pitcher after he gave up seven runs to the Angels. It was quickly deleted.
Holland, who has more than 93,000 followers on Twitter, denied sending the tweet and claimed that his account was hacked. Per Major League Baseball social media rules, players are not allowed to tweet within 30 minutes of the first pitch or during game, and Holland was pitching or cheering his teammates on Sunday night.
Although his fiancé, Lauren, is the only other person who can access his Twitter account, she told Holland that she did not mess with his account.
“I honestly don’t know,” Holland told reporters. “I know it wasn’t myself. I’ve talked to my family and my fiancé and they all said the exact same thing: It wasn’t them. I have no idea. All I know is MLB is taking care of it and they’re going to help me out and figure out who it was. I was blindsided by it. I had no idea.”
Holland pointed out that the homophobic attack was a far cry from his usual tweeting, which consists of random facts and Chuck Norris jokes.
Some might argue that trying to get sympathy over an offensive tweet when one’s Twitter name is “Dutch Oven” is like showing up drunk to contest a DUI, but Holland has said “Dutch Oven” is actually a nickname from fans, earned for “being on fire” while pitching.
Both the Texas Rangers and MLB are investing the homophobic tweet, and Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said that Holland did not know about the incident until after the game.
“Nobody has admitted to doing it, so we don’t know if it was somebody who had access to the account appropriately or if it was a hacker, but we’re leaving that up to the investigators to figure it out,” Daniels added.
This incident comes less than two weeks after the Toronto Blue Jays suspended starting shortstop Yunel Escobar for three games after he wore eye-black with a homophobic slur in Spanish during a game against the Boston Red Sox.
Photo via R Hensley/Flickr