clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Kevin Pillar donates forfeited salary to LGBT groups for using gay slur

New, 1 comment

“It’s not lip service,” the Blue Jays player says.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Milwaukee Brewers
Kevin Pillar
Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Toronto Blue Jays player Kevin Pillar will donate his forfeited salary from a two-game Major League Baseball suspension for using a gay slur to Toronto-area LGBT groups.

"It's not lip service," Pillar told ESPN. "It's easy to come out and make your apologies and hope people forget, but I meant what I said when I said hopefully I'll be made an example of."

In a game two weeks ago, Pillar called Atlanta Braves pitcher Jason Motte “a faggot.” He apologized and was suspended two games without pay. Based on his 2017 salary of $521,000, Pillar will donate about $6,500 to PFLAG and the You Can Play Project. PFLAG will conduct sensitivity training with Pillar.

Pillar also caught the first ceremonial first pitch Thursday night thrown by Michelle Cherny, a member of Pride Toronto's board of directors. The Blue Jays used the pitch to begin Pride Month and ESPN says Pillar requested that he be allowed to catch it.

"There are still some things that are going to be done," he said. "My actions didn't just affect me, they affected this organization as well, and between me and the organization, we're going to do our part."

The salary donation is mainly symbolic since $6,500 is not a large donation but symbols are important (The Blue Jays should at least match the donation). Pillar seems genuinely contrite and apologetic for what he said, and enrolling him in sensitivity training is a good step. His apology he issued for using the slur was also spot on.

Pillar is taking the right steps in atoning for what he said. It’s a stark contrast to Ryan Getzlaf of the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks, who uttered a gay slur in a playoff game. He was fined but not suspended, issued an awful non-apology apology and was more angry at the media than at himself.