The good thing about Jack Morris finally making the Hall of Fame in 2018 is that it ended, once and for all, one of baseball’s most irritating running arguments: whether Morris belonged in the Hall of Fame.
The bad thing about Morris finally making the Hall of Fame in 2018 is that one of the worst broadcasters in the sport gained the imprimatur of Cooperstown for the drivel that he spouts in the booth.
Back in 2014, when I was doing a series of broadcast booth reviews for The Sporting News, the booth of Morris and Dick Bremer in Minnesota was as bad as any I had to endure, because they were, at best, pining for the good old days of the 1980s, and at worst, edging right up to racism, with Morris chiming in, “I think the Latin American players of 20-30 years ago, they knew not to show guys up.”
Well, Morris broadcasts Tigers games now, and he’s done with edging right up to racism. Yeah, that’s him, saying that Detroit should “be vewwy, vewwy caleful” pitching to Shohei Ohtani.
The hallmark of a good apology is an, “if I offended anybody,” and Morris followed up with “especially anyone in the Asian community. … I did not intend for any offensive thing, and I apologize if I did. I certainly have respect, have the utmost respect for this guy.”
Fuck that. Apology not accepted, because it isn’t an apology. Not when you have to introduce it with “it’s been brought to my attention.” Not when you say multiple times that you’re sorry if you offended anyone. The utmost respect for Ohtani? How about any shred of respect for anyone else? Has Morris spent the entire past year and a half in a bunker as hate crimes against Asian-Americans have skyrocketed? Or does he just not give a damn?
Of course, this is the same Jack Morris, who, during his playing days, told the late Jennifer Frey, as she tried to get a quote, “I don’t talk to women when I’m naked unless they’re on top of me or I’m on top of them.”
At least we won’t have to ever have an argument about whether Morris belongs in the Hall of Fame as a broadcaster or a human being. He had a nice, apparently Hall of Fame-worthy baseball career, and it would be great to never hear him or think about him again. It’s bad enough that the people of Detroit are stuck watching the Tigers. They shouldn’t have to listen to this idiot, too.
UPDATE, 3:43 P.M.: Morris has been suspended indefinitely by Bally Sports Detroit, which issued a statement along with the team.
For those curious, Nick Castellanos and the Reds host the Tigers from September 3-5.
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