Baseball legend suspending after mocking Japanese accent during TV commentary

A baseball great has been handed a suspension by broadcaster Bally Sports Detroit after seemingly mocking the Japanese accent.

Analyst Jack Morris was answering a question from play-by-play announcer Matt Shepard when he appeared to impersonate the East Asian accent.

During a game between the Detroit Tigers and the Los Angeles Angels, Morris suggested the Tigers should “be very very careful” with designated hitter and outfielder Shohei Ohtani, but did so while adopting a mock Japanese accent.

Fans were disgusted by his comments as one tweeted: “Jack Morris mocks an Asian accent as Ohtani comes to the plate. Embarrassing,” while another added: “Disgraceful #JackMorris.”

Later in the game, Morris took a moment to apologise for his comments.

“Well, folks, Shohei Ohtani is coming to the plate and it’s been brought to my attention…

“I sincerely apologise 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 apologise if I did. I certainly respect and have the utmost respect for this guy and don’t blame a pitcher for walking him."

Regional network Bally Sports Detroit released a statement expressing their disappointment with the incident.

“We have a zero-tolerance policy for bias or discrimination and deeply apologize for his insensitive remark.”

The Detroit Tigers released their own statement and took a similar stance to that of Bally Sports.

“The Detroit Tigers take immense pride in honouring the diverse cultures that make up our players, coaching staff, front office, fan base and community," they wrote.

"We are deeply disappointed by the comments made by Jack Morris during the broadcast last night.

“We fully support Bally Sports Detroit’s decision and their on-going commitment to ensure that all personnel are held to the highest standards of personal conduct."

It was confirmed that Morris will now undergo bias training as the media continues to try and promote equality and inclusivity across all platforms.

Ohtani's Angels side went on to win the match 8-2.

Morris is renowned as one the best players in the history of baseball, winning the world series four times and winning the Word Series MVP in 1991.

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