Astros deny intent of exec's support of Osuna


HOUSTON — The Houston Astros issued a statement late Monday denying a Sports Illustrated report regarding the behavior of a team executive in the aftermath of the club’s pennant-clinching win in the American League Championship Series on Saturday.

According to the report, during the postgame celebration in the Houston clubhouse after the Astros’ 6-4 win over the New York Yankees, assistant general manager Brandon Taubman turned to a group of female reporters — including one wearing a purple, domestic violence-awareness bracelet — and repeatedly yelled, “Thank god we got Osuna! I’m so f—ing glad we got Osuna!”

Last season, Houston closer Roberto Osuna, 24, served a 75-game suspension for violating Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy. Osuna, then a member of the Toronto Blue Jays, was charged in May 2018 with domestic assault, however the charge was later withdrawn when the woman he is alleged to have assaulted made it clear she would not travel from Mexico to Toronto to testify.

Osuna agreed to a peace bond, which required him to not contact the woman and to continue counseling.

He was acquired by the Astros shortly before the end of that suspension.

This season, Osuna led the AL with 38 saves, but he blew a two-run lead in the Astros’ series-clinching win, giving up a two-run homer to New York’s DJ LeMahieu in the ninth inning. Houston won in the bottom of the inning off a Jose Altuve home run.

The Astros statement read, “The story posted by Sports Illustrated is misleading and completely irresponsible. An Astros player was being asked questions about a difficult outing. Our executive was supporting the player during a difficult time. His comments had everything to do about the game situation that just occurred and nothing else — they were also not directed toward any specific reporters. We are extremely disappointed in Sports Illustrated’s attempt to fabricate a story where one does not exist.”

Taubman was promoted to assistant GM by the Astros late last season. He was worked for the club since 2013.

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