The tweets included the use of racial slurs, and Cortes said he wrote them when he was a teenager.
“I felt like it wasn’t the right message that I wanted to send out when I was 17 years old,” the left-hander said before Monday’s game against the Baltimore Orioles. “Those happened 10 years ago. I deactivated my Twitter to clean stuff up.”
“It’s not acceptable,” he added. “I think I could have managed myself and said stuff differently. But I’m here today to say that I’m going to work on it and fix it.”
Cortes reportedly learned his old tweets were dug up after he allowed just three hits and struck out seven in a win over the Chicago White Sox Sunday. After seeing the screenshots, Cortes said he was “a little pissed off at myself for that stuff.”
“I like to attract all the kids and maybe people who look at themselves like me, not the prototype, not the 6-foot-5, the 97 mph,” he said, via NJ.com. “Hopefully I can start sending better messages.”
It appeared that Cortes was quoting rap lyrics in some of his tweets, and they did not seem to target a specific individual.
Cortes has been electric this season for the Yankees, posting a 1.35 ERA after seven starts.
He had a breakthrough season in 2021, in which he sported a 2.90 ERA in 14 starts, along with 103 strikeouts.
The Associated Press contributed to this report