The Astros have fired assistant general manager Brandon Taubman, as per a statement released by the team. The move comes three days after news broke of an incident following Houston’s ALCS win over the Yankees on Saturday, when Taubman repeatedly yelled “Thank God we got Osuna! I’m so f—— glad we got Osuna!” at a group of three female reporters, a reference to one reporter’s criticism of the Astros’ 2018 acquisition of Roberto Osuna while the closer was serving a 75-game suspension under the MLB-MLBPA Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse policy.
The team’s full statement:
During the past two days, the Astros pro-actively assisted Major League Baseball in interviewing Astros employees as part of MLB’s investigation of the events published in the recent Sports Illustrated article. Major League Baseball also separately interviewed members of the media over the past 24 hours.
Our initial investigation led us to believe that Brandon Taubman’s inappropriate comments were not directed toward any reporter. 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. 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.
Apstein was the journalist who reported Taubman’s outburst in a piece for Sports Illustrated, which led to a statement from the Astros on Monday describing her story as “misleading and completely irresponsible,” and an “attempt to fabricate a story where one does not exist.” After multiple other reporters confirmed Apstein’s account of events, the Astros issued two new statements from Taubman and owner Jim Crane, neither of which corrected the organization’s initial claim that Apstein’s story was false.
The Astros organization has been roundly criticized for its response to the situation, and ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reported earlier today that Taubman’s status with the team “has been under evaluation” in recent days. Taubman was promoted to assistant GM before the 2019 season, following five and a half years with the team in various roles in the baseball operations department.