MLB Network broadcaster Jim Kaat came under fire Friday after making a slavery reference during the American League Division Series game between the Chicago White Sox and Houston Astros.
White Sox infielder Yoán Moncada, a Cuban native, was at the plate when former MLB manager Buck Showalter recalled knowing Moncada had the potential to be a superstar when he was scouting him as the chief of the Baltimore Orioles. Moncada eventually signed with the Boston Red Sox and was later traded to Chicago.
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Chicago White Sox third baseman Yoán Moncada fields a ground ball by Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve during the third inning in Game 2 of an American League Division Series game Friday, Oct. 8, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)
Kaat decided to add to Showalter’s story with a puzzling remark.
“Get a 40-acre field full of ‘em,” the 82-year-old former pitcher said.
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Former pitcher Jim Kaat on the field before the Toronto Blue Jays MLB game against the Boston Red Sox on April 8, 2016 at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Later in the game, Kaat apologized for the comment.
“I want to add a little break here. In fact, I need to read this right now, because earlier in the game when Yoán Moncada was at the plate in an attempt to compliment the great player, I used a poor choice of words that resulted in a sensitive, hurtful remark. And I’m sorry.” Kaat said.
He stayed on through the broadcast.
The Chicago White Sox’ Yoán Moncada, left, celebrates with third base coach Joe McEwing after hitting a two-run home run during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in Chicago, Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
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Kaat pitched in the majors from 1959 to 1983 and was a three-time All-Star and World Series champion. He made his debut in broadcasting with the New York Yankees in 1986.