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Baseball Players’ Union Criticizes Arizona Immigration Law

The Major League Baseball Players Association criticized a new Arizona immigration law, saying the union “will consider additional steps necessary to protect the rights and interests of our members.”

A report released yesterday by the University of Central Florida’s Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sports said 27 percent of major leaguers last season were Latino.

The Arizona law requires local police to determine the immigration status of anyone suspected of being in the country illegally.

“The Major League Baseball Players Association opposes this law as written,” according to a statement released today by union Executive Director Michael Weiner. “We hope that the law is repealed or modified promptly. If the current law goes into effect, the MLBPA will consider additional steps necessary to protect the rights and interests of our members.”

Though the statement didn’t propose specific action by the MLBPA, baseball’s All-Star Game is scheduled to be played in Phoenix next year.

“The recent passage by Arizona of a new immigration law could have a negative impact on hundreds of major-league players who are citizens of countries other than the United States,” according to the union statement. “These international players are very much a part of our national pastime and are important members of our association.”

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