Broadcaster Kaat apologizes for “40-acre” comment

Sports

Chicago White Sox third baseman Yoan Moncada (10) fields a round ball by Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve (27) during the third inning in Game 2 of a baseball American League Division Series Friday, Oct. 8, 2021, in Houston. Altuve was out at first. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)

HOUSTON (AP) — MLB Network broadcaster Jim Kaat apologized during Friday’s AL Division Series game between the Astros and White Sox after saying teams should try to “get a 40-acre field full of” players who look like Chicago infielder Yoán Moncada.

Kaat, a former All-Star pitcher and longtime commentator for the New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins, made the remark in the first inning of Game 2 in response to a comment from broadcaster Buck Showalter about Moncada, who is Cuban.

“After the first time I saw him in the big leagues, I looked around the dugout, like, ‘Do we have one of those?’” said Showalter, who opposed Moncada while managing the Baltimore Orioles.

Kaat replied: “Get a 40-acre field full of them,” a remark that reminded some viewers of the unfilled promise by the U.S. government that freed slaves would receive 40 acres and a mule following the Civil War.

The 82-year-old Kaat apologized during the fifth inning.

“Earlier in the game when Yoán Moncada was at the plate, in an attempt to compliment the great player that he is, I used a poor choice of words that resulted in an insensitive and hurtful remark,” he said. “And I’m sorry for that.”

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