SAN DIEGO -- Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell has been accused of making homophobic statements and gestures toward a group of men who attended one of the games played between the Braves and Giants at AT&T Park this past weekend.
High-profile attorney Gloria Allred staged a Wednesday afternoon press conference to announce the allegations made by 33-year-old Justin Quinn of Fresno, Calif. Quinn alleges McDowell made crude sexual gestures in the direction of three men during batting practice at AT&T Park on Saturday afternoon.
"I am deeply sorry that I responded to the heckling fans in San Francisco on Saturday," McDowell said in a statement released Wednesday. "I apologize to everyone for my actions."
Commissioner Bud Selig and the Braves issued statements saying they were concerned about these allegations.
"I was informed today that Roger McDowell, a coach of the Atlanta Braves, is being accused of engaging in highly inappropriate conduct toward fans at a game in San Francisco," Selig said in his statement. "Although I do not yet have all the facts regarding this incident, the allegations are very troubling to me. The Atlanta Braves have assured my office that they will immediately investigate the allegations, and report the results of the investigation to me. After I have all the facts, I will make a determination of how to proceed."
The Braves also said they planned to continue investigating the allegations.
"We were made aware of an incident in San Francisco this past Saturday," the Braves said in their statement. "We are concerned by these allegations and the behavior described by a witness today. This in no way represents the Braves organization and the conduct we expect of our employees. We will withhold further comments until we finish gathering information."
Attending the game with his wife and 9-year-old twin daughters, Quinn said he yelled toward McDowell to tell him kids were present. He alleges the Braves' pitching coach said kids don't belong at a baseball stadium and walked toward him holding the bat before asking, "How much are your teeth worth?"
"My kids are in panic mode. ... They're, like, grabbing onto me," Quinn told The Associated Press. "I'm talking to him, trying to calm him down and the kids are screaming."
Allred said she wants Major League Baseball to fine the Braves and McDowell. She has also asked that McDowell issue an apology to Quinn and the city of San Francisco.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.