Detroit Tigers television analyst Jack Morris apologized Tuesday night after using a mocking accent while talking about Los Angeles Angels star Shohei Ohtani.
On the Bally Sports Detroit broadcast of the Angels’ 8-2 win over the Tigers, lead announcer Matt Shepard was setting the scene with Ohtani set to bat in the sixth inning with a runner on second and two outs.
Shepard said to Morris, “Now what do you do with Shohei Ohtani?”
Morris replied with an exaggerated accent: “Be very, very careful.”
Ohtani drew an intentional walk, and the Tigers escaped the inning without allowing a run.
When Ohtani came up in the ninth inning, Morris said, “Well, folks, Shohei Ohtani is coming to the plate and it’s been brought to my attention, and I sincerely apologize if I offended anybody, especially anybody in the Asian community for what I said about pitching and being careful to Shohei Ohtani. 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 don’t blame a pitcher for walking him.”
Ohtani, the major league leader with 39 homers, ended the night 1-for-3 with three walks and a run.
Morris spent 14 seasons of his Hall of Fame playing career with the Tigers. A hard-nosed right-hander pitcher, he went on to play for the Minnesota Twins, Toronto Blue Jays and Cleveland Indians while compiling a 254-186 record with a 3.90 ERA.
Morris, 66, led the Tigers to a World Series championship in 1984, then earned championship rings with the Twins in 1991 (capturing World Series MVP honors) and the Blue Jays in 1992.
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–Field Level Media