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Shoehi Ohtani Newsbeat

Friday, July 16, 2021

Stephen A. Smith opens Tuesday’s ‘First Take’ with apology for Shohei Ohtani comments

A day after his comments about Los Angeles Angels and MLB All-Star Shohei Ohtani sparked outrage, Stephen A. Smith opened “First Take” on ESPN Tuesday with an apology.

“Let me be the first to stand up and say that I want to express my sincere apologies to the Asian community and the Asian-American community,” Smith said. “I am a Black man. I religiously go off about minorities being marginalized in this nation.”

Smith said MLB could not properly market Ohtani because he chooses to do the majority of English interviews through an interpreter.

“The fact that you got a foreign player that doesn’t speak English, believe it or not, I think contributes to harming the game to some degree, when that’s your box office appeal,” Smith said during Monday’s “First Take.” “It needs to be somebody like Bryce Harper, Mike Trout, those guys. And unfortunately at this point in time, that’s not the case.

“When you talk about an audience gravitating to the tube, or to the ballpark, to actually watch you, I don’t think it helps that the No. 1 face is a dude that needs an interpreter so you can understand what the hell he’s saying, in this country. And that’s what I’m trying to say.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 16, 2021 at 07:10 PM | 7 comment(s)
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