The 2021 MLB All-Star Game will not be played in Atlanta. On Friday, Major League Baseball announced it has pulled the All-Star Game and the Amateur Draft from Atlanta, the home of the Atlanta Braves. This decision comes more than a week after the passes of SB 2020, "a Georgia law that President Biden criticized earlier this week, saying that it will restrict voting access for residents of the state," according to MLB.com."
"Over the last week, we have engaged in thoughtful conversations with Clubs, former and current players, the Players Association, and The Players Alliance, among others, to listen to their views," MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. "I have decided that the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport is by relocating this year's All-Star Game and MLB Draft.
"Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box," Manfred continued. "In 2020, MLB became the first professional sports league to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance to help build a future in which everyone participates in shaping the United States. We proudly used our platform to encourage baseball fans and communities throughout our country to perform their civic duty and actively participate in the voting process. Fair access to voting continues to have our game's unwavering support."
The All-Star game was set to be played at the Braves home stadium Truist Park. When the Braves learned the news, they released a statement, saying: "This was neither our decision, nor our recommendation and we are saddened that fans will not be able to see the event in our city. The Braves organization will continue to stress the importance of equal voting opportunities and we had hoped our city could use this event as a platform to enhance the discussion. The statement goes on to say that "business, employees, and fans in Georgia are the victims of this decision."
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed the voting bill into law last week. After MLB's announcement, Kemp tweeted: Today, [MLB] caved to fear, political opportunism, and liberal lies. Georgians - and all Americans - should fully understand what the MLB's knee-jerk decision means: cancel culture and woke political activists are coming for every aspect of your life, sports included. If the left doesn't agree with you, facts and the truth do not matter. MLB has not yet announced a new location for the All-Star Game.