The Houston Astros have fired assistant GM Brandon Taubman days after he made inappropriate comments toward female reporters.
Following the Astros’ dramatic victory over the New York Yankees to clinch the American League pennant and a berth in the World Series on Saturday night, Sports Illustrated reported that in the locker room following the win, Taubman turned to a group of female reporters and repeatedly yelled to them, “Thank God we got Osuna! I’m so f—ing glad we got Osuna!” referring to Astros closer Roberto Osuna. The reliever had previously been suspended for 75 games in violation of Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy after being accused of assaulting the mother of his child in 2018.
“Our initial investigation led us to believe that Brandon Taubman’s inappropriate comments were not directed toward any reporter,” the Astros said in Thursday’s statement. “We were wrong. We sincerely apologize to Stephanie Apstein, Sports Illustrated and to all individuals who witnessed this incident or were offended by the inappropriate conduct. The Astros in no way intended to minimize the issues related to domestic violence.
“Our initial belief was based on witness statements about the incident. Subsequent interviews have revealed that Taubman’s inappropriate comments were, in fact, directed toward one or more reporters. Accordingly we have terminated Brandon Taubman’s employment with the Houston Astros. His conduct does not reflect the values of our organization and we believe this is the most appropriate course of action.
“We are thankful to Major League Baseball and to everyone that cooperated in the investigation,” the statement continued. “As previously stated, the Astros are very committed to using our voice to create awareness and support on the issue of domestic violence. We fully support MLB and baseball’s stance and values regarding domestic violence. We will continue to make this cause a priority for our organization.”
In its initial statement, the Astros had accused Sports Illustrated and its reporter, Stephanie Apstein, of “fabricating” and giving “misleading” information about the incident and defended Taubman, despite multiple reporters corroborating the incident. On Tuesday, MLB stepped in to conduct its own investigation of the incident, before eventually firing Taubman on Thursday.