The fallout from MLB’s decision to move the All-Star Game out of Georgia continued on Monday, as Texas Governor Greg Abbott is now essentially boycotting the league.
Abbott issued a statement announcing that he will no longer be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch at the Texas Rangers’ home opener on Monday afternoon. He said he made the decision because he believes MLB is “perpetuating false political narratives.” Abbott also called it “shameful that America’s pastime is being influenced by partisan politics.”
Here is the full statement:
I was looking forward to throwing out the first pitch at the Texas Rangers' home opening game until @MLB adopted what has turned out to be a false narrative about Georgia's election law reforms.
It is shameful that America's pastime is being influenced by partisan politics. pic.twitter.com/pNJApYBHpw
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) April 5, 2021
Abbott said he will still support the Rangers and has “deep respect” for the organization. However, he added that he will not be participating in any event hosted by MLB or seek to hold any special MLB events in Texas at this time, including this year’s All-Star Game.
MLB announced on Friday that it was moving the 2021 All-Star Game out of Atlanta. The move was in response to Georgia's recently signed SB202 law (full text of the bill here). The “election integrity” bill is designed to improve the voting and election process. There are many pro-voting aspects of the bill, though some activist groups have taken issue with some aspects of the bill.
The Atlanta Braves also issued a statement about the All-Star Game decision and are understandably unhappy with it.