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WATCH: MLB Coach Says His Team Won’t Be Permitted To Kneel During The National Anthem

The sun is out, the grass is green, and a new Major League Baseball season is just weeks away. Spring Training marks renewed hope for all 32 MLB teams, as even clubs that lost over a hundred games last year can speculate on “what if.” Of course, it won’t take long once the regular season starts to identify which teams are on the cusp and which teams need to be stripped to the bones and rebuilt.

One of those teams on the cusp is the San Francisco Giants. The Giants finished a disappointing 79-83 in 2023, finishing in fourth place and ending the tenure of Manager Gabe Kapler. Kapler managed the team from 202 until near the end of the 2023 season before being let go. Kai Correa finished the last three games of the season.

New Manager Bob Melvin joined the team after two seasons down the coast with the San Diego Padres, and he is bringing a new mindset to the Giants. It is an attitude that more closely resembles his own, in fact. Melvin was a hard-nosed catcher, playing for seven teams, including the Giants from 1985-1994. As a Manager, Melvin has been very successful, winning Manager of the Year in both leagues, leading numerous clubs to eight postseason appearances and four division titles.

He has had a very decorated 20-year career, and the 62-year-old skipper brings with him a new set of standards that are vastly different from Gabe Kapler’s.  San Francisco is a far-left city, and Kapler ran the team accordingly. Kapler famously refused to take the field for the National Anthem in hollow protest of the Uvalde, Texas, school shooting and allowed his players to handle things as they saw fit. Not Bob Melvin. The new skipper brings a stricter set of rules and intends to honor the flag and National Anthem.

For Spring Training, at least, all players are required to leave the dugout and stand at attention for the National Anthem. Melvin is hopeful that the rule can extend into the regular season. While the new manager has stopped short of making an overt political statement, the intentions are clear. He said about his rule: “It’s all about the perception that we’re out there ready to play. That’s it. You want your team ready to play, and I want the other team to notice it, too. It’s really as simple as that.”

Melvin played during an era before anthem protests and political theatrics from the likes of Colin Kaepernick, and he is seeking to bring respect for America back to the ballpark, even under the guise of team unity. Melvin added: “Look, we’re a new team here, we got some good players here. It’s more about letting the other side know that we’re ready to play. I want guys out here ready to go. There’s a personality to that.”

Melvin’s plan might seem a bit risky, considering San Francisco is perhaps the most far-left city in America, but so far, the players are all-in. Giants outfielder Austin Slater told The Athletic“Whether you’re not playing that day or you’re a starting pitcher who threw yesterday, you’re still out there, on time, ready to be a good teammate. Once the anthem starts, we’re locked in on the game as a unit. There’s an inherent respect level, and not only to the older guys but to your entire team. You’re there to be supportive. The other big part, and this might be the biggest, is you’re staying and watching the game and learning from the game. I think that’s important.”

Little in the sports world is more American than baseball. Unfortunately, some managers, such as Kapler, let the players run the dugout and disrespect the flag and Anthem. Bob Melvin’s approach may be criticized by leftists, but it is refreshing and hopefully will extend into the regular season.