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Braves pitching coach is suspended after allegations of lewd behavior

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Roger McDowell is suspended for two weeks and fined
  • He has said he is sorry for the way he acted
  • MLB Commissioner says insensitive conduct "cannot and will not be tolerated"

(CNN) -- Major League Baseball said Sunday that an Atlanta Braves pitching coach accused of misconduct has been suspended for two weeks without pay and fined an undisclosed amount for his inappropriate behavior.

Roger McDowell is accused of making vulgar, homophobic and threatening comments at a Giants and Braves baseball game on April 23 at the AT&T Park in San Francisco.

The suspension is retroactive to Friday, when McDowell was placed on administrative leave.

Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig said in a statement that he hoped the incident would raise awareness of the importance of sensitivity to others.

"Major League Baseball is a social institution that brings people together and welcomes all individuals of different races, religions, genders, national origins and sexual orientations into its ballparks. Conduct by people associated with MLB that shows insensitivity to others simply cannot and will not be tolerated," he said.

The commissioner also commended Justin Quinn, a fan who attended the game with his wife and 9-year-old twin daughters and who brought McDowell's behavior to the attention of the public.

Quinn and his attorney, Gloria Allred, accused McDowell of making lewd and homophobic gestures and comments to male fans in the stadium bleachers. They also said he threatened Quinn when he complained to McDowell that kids could hear.

"When I go to a baseball game and take my family I expect a higher standard of conduct from the team and its coaches," Quinn told reporters last week. "Children should not be told that they do not belong at a ballpark."

McDowell, who has apologized for his behavior, will also be required to undergo sensitivity training, according to the MLB.