(CBS) Shortstop Addison Russell won’t suit up for the Cubs on Thursday night because the team told him to “stay away from the ballpark” for at least a day, president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said, so Russell could devote his attention to dealing with a domestic violence allegation that surfaced Wednesday night, one that he’s since denied.
“It’s not a suspension at this time,” Epstein said Thursday afternoon before the Cubs hosted the Rockies.
Russell’s wife, Melisa, published an Instagram post Wednesday evening while the Cubs-Marlins game was being played that said the 23-year-old Russell had cheated on her and that indicated the two were breaking up. They were married in 2016. The post has since been deleted.
In a comment that came after the original post, an individual who identified herself as Melisa’s close friend told another Instagram user that Russell had hit his wife before.
Upon learning of this, Epstein followed up with Russell immediately after Wednesday’s game. He then contacted the league office early Thursday morning, and Major League Baseball has confirmed that it’s looking into the matter. The league stopped short of calling it a formal investigation.
It remains unclear how long Russell will be away from the Cubs. Epstein didn’t rule out placing Russell on the inactive list.
“We’re not sure,” Epstein said. “We’re going to see how the situation develops and how he’s doing. We’ll probably have more for you on that in the coming days.”