Miami Marlins Apologize For Using Steve Irwin’s Death To Taunt Tampa Bay Rays

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The Miami Marlins baseball team has apologized after its social media team attempted to taunt the Tampa Bay Rays with a tweet about the late Australian wildlife expert and broadcaster Steve Irwin.

Twitter trash-talking between the rival Florida-based MLB teams took an insensitive turn on Sunday, after the Rays beat the Marlins twice in a weekend double-header. The Marlins called the Rays “literally the animal that killed Steve Irwin.” 

Irwin, known as “The Crocodile Hunter,” died in September 2006 after a stingray’s barb punctured his heart while he was filming a documentary.

The Marlins’ tweet split opinion online, and former team president David Samson called for the person responsible to be fired:

In a statement released Monday, a spokesperson for the Marlins said it was “a regrettable exchange by our otherwise creative social media team.”

“Unfortunately, in this medium, sometimes we swing and miss, and this was definitely a miss,” the statement said.

An apology was also issued on the team’s Twitter feed:

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