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Why Are Some Twins Players Absent For National Anthem?

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) - The Minnesota Twins wrapped up their longest home stand of the season with another win Thursday at Target Field.  While fans are happy with outcome of the games, some are concerned with what's going on before they start.

Some Twins players are noticeably absent for the National Anthem. A fan took a picture on Saturday at Target Field and counted just seven players in the line. That's out of a 25-player roster.

Three games over 500 for the first time in five years -- those are numbers any true Twins fan can appreciate.

Still, Kip Carver is questioning his loyalty after what he captured during Saturday's National Anthem.

"That's just unacceptable," Carver said.

"I see seven Twins standing in front of the dugout, and I look toward the White Sox dugout. I'm not sure how many but an entire line of folks," Carver said as he pointed to the picture he took.

Twins President Dave St. Peter told WCCO players tend to get into strict rituals at home. They could be getting treatment in the clubhouse or warming up in the batting cage while the National Anthem is going on.

"If a player isn't on the line, it doesn't mean he doesn't respect the National Anthem," he said. "It's because he's doing everything he can to get ready for that day's game."

The Twins have fielded dozens of complaints after Kip's photos were shared hundreds of times online.

"Frankly, I wish there were more guys out every single game," St. Peter said.

WCCO also found, during Wednesday and Thursday's games, not much had changed. On Thursday, five players were pictured in the infield and five in the outfield.

"Issues like this are important to fans, and they're important to us," St. Peter said.

Military service and sacrifice are a big part of what the Twins organization stands for.

"Ultimately, could we work to provide more players out there at that time," St. Peter said. "That's a fair discussion, and one we're certainly going to have as an organization."

There are no rules from Major League Baseball or the Twins that say where players have to be for the National Anthem.  Many players on the Twins roster are not from the U.S.  Still, team reps told WCCO they expect players to pay proper respect during the National Anthem.

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