Sports (Off) Color Commentary – A Dark History

At this point, anyone with a sports pulse likely knows Jack Morris, former MLB pitcher, is now a former MLB commentator. That is because Morris despicably mocked Shohei Ohtani during a live broadcast the other night, using a stereotype of a voice because he thought it was...uh...I guess funny.

Spencer Wheelock on Twitter: "Jack Morris apologies before Shohei Otani's at-bat in the ninth inning. pic.twitter.com/WdCjfyfSvX / Twitter"

Jack Morris apologies before Shohei Otani's at-bat in the ninth inning. pic.twitter.com/WdCjfyfSvX

 

Not surprisingly, and if you are surprised you are not paying attention, this is not even close to the first time a commentator has done this live on the air. Who can forget Howard Cosell using the term "little monkey" while describing a breakaway run by a black running back in an NFL football game? Now, in Cosell's defense by many in the industry, he had used this term for years about all races of players.

1972, 1973, 1983 Little Monkey Comments by Howard Cosell

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One person nobody came to the defense of, aside from a handful of people, was Jimmy The Greek. A well-known commentator and prognosticator said some pretty crazy remarks during an interview. It was not during a game but it does not make it better, and he was all over sports tv which created shock waves after these comments.

Jimmy The Greek Gets Cancelled (1988)

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More recently, as if Jack Morris didn't have enough examples in years of past, just last season Reds commentator, Thom Brenneman, showed us just how tolerant he is of lifestyles not lining up with his.

Baseball announcer suspended after homophobic slur

Cincinnati Reds broadcaster Thom Brennaman has been suspended after he used a homophobic slur on air during a game Wednesday.Watch The National live on YouTu...

 

Sadly, this happens at all levels. Just as a coincidence (maybe not) these two high school sports examples were both in Oklahoma.

Announcers Caught On Hot Mic Using Racist, Sexist Language At High School Basketball Game | TODAY

Just before tipoff at the high school girls' basketball tournament near Tulsa, Oklahoma, two announcers were caught on a hot mic reacting as team members kne...

Racist Announcer Calls Basketball Player Names 'Disgusting'

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The sympathizers out there may try and make excuses for the pro announcers (I would hope you do not try and make excuses for the high school ones), but the fact is they said what they said. Do you know how people say your true thoughts come out when you are drunk? Maybe these guys were drunk with power. And this is not new for Jack Morris, ever since his offensive remarks towards Otani, a report has come out about a prior offensive comment from Morris.

According to Newsweek (2021), when Morris was an active pitcher in the MLB he told a female reporter from the Washington Post, "I only talk to women when I’m naked when they’re on top of me or I’m on top of them.” A Yankees fan on Twitter under the name @NY_SixNine, claimed Morris never said that. While several players and reporters confirmed the story is true, some random fan on Twitter thinks he knows better.

For now, it appears Morris' career as a commentator is over, and we should all be happy to hear that.

 

~Michael Patrick Day, Irish Proud & 12oz Sports Writer

 

References

Beresford, J (2021). Jack Morris' Sexist Remark Resurfaces in Wake of Detroit Tigers Suspension. Newsweek. Retrieved https://www.newsweek.com/jack-morris-sexist-remark-resurfaces-wake-detroit-tigers-suspension-1620916

Main Article Photo Credit: Photo credit: Tom Hagerty Photography on Visualhunt

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At this point, anyone with a sports pulse likely knows Jack Morris, former MLB pitcher, is now a former MLB commentator. That is because Morris despicably mocked Shohei Ohtani during a live broadcast the other night, using a stereotype of a voice because he thought it was...uh...I guess funny. https://twitter.com/SpencerWheelock/status/1427825326684622848 […]