Dinger Mascot Theory Spreads Online Over Racial Slur Heard at Rockies Game

The Colorado Rockies' 13-8 win over the Miami Marlins on Sunday was marred by a fan apparently shouting repeated racial abuse at Marlins outfielder Lewis Brinson in the top of ninth inning.

Microphones used for the Bally Sports Florida broadcast picked up a fan allegedly using the N-word after Brinson, who is Black, had faced two pitches in his at-bat at Coors Field in Denver, Colorado.

Paul Severino, the Marlins' play-by-play announcer immediately apologized for the slur, saying it had no place on the broadcast.

Clips of the fan appearing to shout the racial epithet have gone viral on Twitter and have racked up a combined 3 million views at the time of writing.

However, some social media users have put forth the possibility that the alleged culprit—who is yet to be identified—was perhaps simply trying to get the attention of Dinger, the dinosaur-like creature who is the Rockies' mascot.

Grainy footage posted on Twitter appears to show a Rockies fan in the first row just behind home plate seemingly gesticulating towards the mascot during Brinson's at-bat.

During the clip a word that sounds very much like the N-word can be heard in the background.

Some have suggested the fan in question was instead shouting "Dinger" and trying to get the mascot's attention.

According to Yahoo! Sports, other fans could be heard earlier also saying "Dinger."

if you look closely he was trying to get the attention of “Dinger” the Rockies mascot. pic.twitter.com/kVB8RVByXW

— rhysta (@vrhysta) August 9, 2021

After watching the video many times back to back, I think maybe, this fan is actually yelling “DINGER!” To the @Rockies mascot. Can y’all check this out? See who has tickets to that seat? Any cameras on the 1st base side that can help confirm this? https://t.co/6DbIt49R0H pic.twitter.com/wiB4twAvma

— Hannah Stephens (@TheHannahSShow) August 9, 2021

Upon first hearing this audio, I was disgusted. Went back a few hours later to give the mascot theory a chance. I think it’s totally possible that we’re hearing a drunk dude yelling “Dinger”. pic.twitter.com/XrHDinpd3K

— Michael 🦖 (@extramichael) August 9, 2021

The Rockies have launched an investigation into the incident, condemning the alleged racial slur and vowing to identify the fan.

"The Colorado Rockies are disgusted at the racial slur by a fan directed at the Marlins' Lewis Brinson during the ninth inning of today's game," the team said in a statement released after the game.

"Although the subject was not identified prior to the end of the game, the Rockies are still investigating this incident.

"The Rockies have zero tolerance for any form of racism or discrimination, and any fan using derogatory language of any kind will be ejected and banned from Coors Field."

Speaking to The Associated Press, Marlins spokesman Jason Latimer said "neither Lewis, nor any other Marlins on the field or in the dugout, heard what was shouted."

However, once they were informed of the incident, the Marlins raised the issue with the Rockies.

"We brought the matter to the attention of the Rockies. How the matter is being handled, I would have to defer to them," Latimer added.

Meanwhile, MLB Players Association executive director Tony Clark said in a statement on Sunday night that MLB teams must "continue to work together to ensure that racism is never tolerated on or off the field."

"While many are truly committed to respect and equality for all, the abhorrent racial animus displayed today highlights that there is still much work to be done," he added.

Colorado Rockies mascot Dinger
Colorado Rockies mascot Dinger holds an empty Powerade bucket after a walk-off celebration by the Rockies after a win against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Coors Field on August 14, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. A fan apparently shouted repeated racial abuse at Marlins outfielder Lewis Brinson, but some are wondering if the alleged perpetrator was calling out the mascot in the stands. Dustin Bradford/Getty Images