Detroit Tigers Commentator Apologizes for Racist Joke About Japanese Baseball Player (Video)

Jack Morris appeared to mock Asian accents at one point in a game between the Tigers and the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday

Jack Morris Getty Images

Jack Morris apologized on-air after making a joke that mocked the accent of Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitcher Shohei Otani during their game against the Detroit Tigers Tuesday night.

Morris’ comment happened after his fellow sportscaster asked, “now what do you do with Shohei Otani?” as Otani was coming up to bat.

“Be very, very careful,” Morris replied, in what sounded like a mockery of a Japanese accent. His co-anchor didn’t respond but it didn’t take long for Morris to apologize.

Shortly after making this comment, Morris said, “well folks, Shohei Otani is coming to the plate and it’s been brought to my attention… and I sincerely apologize if I offended anyone in the Asian community for what I said about pitching and being careful to Shohei Otani. I did not intend for any offensive thing and I apologize if I did. I certainly respect and have the utmost respect for this guy, and I don’t blame a pitcher for walking.”

Representatives for the Tigers and the Angels didn’t immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment. It’s unclear what motivated Morris to apologize and if he will face any consequences for his remarks.

Otani is a standout pitcher in the MLB and abroad; he holds the record for fastest pitch by a Japanese person with a 102.5 mph fastball.

“It sure sounds like he’s mocking Japanese speakers on live television,” one viewer noted on Twitter after Morris’ remarks were heard live.

Before he was a sportscaster, Morris pitched for the Detroit Tigers from 1976-1990. He was one of the highest-paid players in American League Baseball for several years in the late 1980s and early 90s and was part of a World Series-winning squad four times. In 2018, Morris was inducted into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame.

Morris became a part-time analyst for the Detroit Tigers in 2015. In addition to pitching for the Tigers during his MLB career, Morris also started as a pitcher for the Minnesota Twins, Toronto Blue Jays and Cincinnati Reds.

Check out a clip of Morris’ comments and more reactions from baseball fans below.

More to come…

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