WASHINGTON — The Brewers’ Josh Hader thought his All-Star experience couldn’t get any worse Tuesday night after surrendering a go-ahead homer to the Mariners’ Jean Segura. Then he returned to the clubhouse and looked at his phone.
That’s when Hader, 24, realized a series of his homophobic and racist tweets, sent from his account as far back as seven years ago, had been uncovered and posted on Twitter while he was on the field. Hader didn’t deny doing any of the offensive Twitter activity — from what he could remember — but said some were rap lyrics.
When the door to the NL clubhouse opened, Hader was waiting at his locker toward the back. With the other All-Stars getting dressed and packing up, Hader had a large media pack around him and answered questions for roughly three minutes. He was asked to explain the tweets.
“You can’t,” Hader said. “There’s no excuse for what was said. I’m deeply sorry for what I’ve said and what’s been going on. It doesn’t reflect any of my beliefs going on now.”
Yahoo Sports reported that Hader’s family, which had been wearing his replica jerseys, were given ones to put on without his name on the back as they waited outside the clubhouse. Inside, Hader tried to pass off the behavior as the rantings of a 17-year-old high school kid, although some tweets seem to be more recent.
“I was young, immature and stupid,’’ said Hader, who grew up in Millersville, Maryland. “There’s no excuses for what was said or what happened.”
And now Hader has to go back and rejoin his Milwaukee teammates, who are going to be asking for an explanation, as well. He plans to address them.
“Yeah, for sure,” Hader said. “Obviously, It’s something they shouldn’t be involved in. Being 17 years old, you make stupid decisions and mistakes.”
Hader didn’t recall sending all of the tweets — “Not vividly, no,” he said — but emphasized that those offensive comments did not represent who he is now.
“No, not at all,” Hader said. “I was in high school. We’re still learning who we are in high school. You live and you learn. This mistake won’t happen again.”
Up until Tuesday night, Hader had been one of the sport’s more impressive stories of the first half, with a 1.50 ERA and 16.7 K/9 ratio for the contending Brewers. But all that unraveled in a matter of hours, right around the time he gave up Segura’s homer. As of late Tuesday, it was unclear how the tweets first surfaced or who discovered them. The bigger question? How could they still exist all this time later, especially with Hader becoming a more high-profile name in the majors.
“I mean, no deletes,” Hader said. “I just leave them. When you’re a kid, you just tweet what’s on your mind.”