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“I am deeply sorry that I responded to the heckling fans in San Francisco,” McDowell said in a statement, his only public comment on the matter. “I apologize to everyone for my actions.”

Allred said Friday she was “very pleased” by the Braves‘ action, adding that she spoke with baseball commissioner Bud Selig about the incident earlier in the day.

“I have been contacted by other fans who allege that they witnessed the incidents in question and who state that they corroborate the conduct which we allege,” Allred said in an email. “We are providing all relevant evidence to the commissioner for his investigation. We appreciate the fact that the commissioner has indicated to me that the alleged behavior, if verified, would be completely unacceptable and that appropriate action will be taken at the conclusion of the investigation. We look forward to the results.”

Selig already called the allegations “very troubling” and said he would await the results of the team’s investigation.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation called on the Braves and Major League Baseball to take “real disciplinary action and send the message that anti-gay slurs have no place in sports.”

“Professional sporting events should be an environment that all fans and families can enjoy, not a place where children are exposed to violent threats and discriminatory language,” said the alliance’s president, Jarrett Barrios.

The Braves‘ minor league pitching coordinator, Dave Wallace, will take over for McDowell during the investigation.

McDowell was a star reliever with the Mets and Philadelphia Phillies, playing a key role on New York’s World Series-winning club in 1986. He has been Atlanta’s pitching coach since 2005, earning praise for his work in developing young hurlers Tommy Hanson and Jair Jurrjens.

“He’s the most consistent guy I’ve ever been around,” Gonzalez said. “A solid, solid, solid person.”