The Toronto Blue Jays recently apologized for their players wearing t-shirts that made fun of them being "homeless" this season. The team is not allowed to play at their home stadium in Toronto due to travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic, which led to players wearing "Homeless Jays" shirts showing the Blue Jays mascot. The shirts led to some backlash on social media.
"The Blue Jays take accountability for ensuring negative stereotypes are not perpetuated and for supporting marginalized groups in our community," the Blue Jays said in a statement. "The club has addressed the issue of the T-shirts with our players and they will not be worn again."
There were a few Twitter users who didn't appreciate the shirt. "What the hell is wrong with you and the [Blue Jays] organization?" one fan wrote to Blue Jays player Anthony Bass. "There are thousands of people sleeping in parks in just Toronto right now and millions more facing eviction across Canada and the USA few weeks in a hotel while being paid to play baseball is not being 'homeless.'"
Another fan had an idea about putting the shirts to good use: "If you're going to continue to wear those then how about the [Blue Jays] sell them with all proceeds going to help actual homeless people?" another Twitter user wrote.
Before the start of the season, the Blue Jays were denied clearance to play their home games in Toronto. That forced the team to search for a new home, which is now Sahlen Field Buffalo, New York, which is the home of their Triple-A affiliate Buffalo Bisons.
"We are extremely grateful to have a home in Buffalo this season, thanks to the openness, creativity, and partnership of the Buffalo Bisons, Major League Baseball, and Blue Jays staff, who have worked tirelessly to prepare us for games at Sahlen Field," Blue Jays president and CEO Mark Shapiro said in a statement at the time. Despite not having a home field, the Blue Jays are playing solid baseball, posting a 12-11 record and only 3.5 games out of first place as of Friday afternoon. The team plays in the AL East, which features the New York Yankees who have the third-best record in baseball.