Before the next time Torii Hunter opens his mouth, he should think over what he wants to say or get a dictionary.
If Hunter gets a big booing on Opening Day in Los Angeles, he better know for the future. He deserves it.
Hunter referred to Latinos as “impostors” while discussing the number of present African-Americans in the Major Leagues.
Hunter’s original comments were made two weeks ago in one of a series of USA Today roundtables about baseball and published in Wednesday’s editions.
According to a story published in USA Today’s Thursday edition, he meant no harm or disrespect to Latin American players. However, he made very clear he is not apologizing even though he admits using the wrong choice of words.
I really would like to know if, during a similar interview, a Latino player in a similar context would have said the word “Negro” before calling such people “impostors” in the majors.
I bet the whole media would have exploded on it.
If it would have been a Dominican Republic or Venezuelan player, no matter his skin color, people would have asked immediately for his deportation. No matter if it was an All-Star like Hanley Ramirez or Miguel Cabrera.
If it would have been Cuban, the outcry would have made its way back to Fidel Castro. No matter if it would have been Alexei Ramirez or newcomer Aroldis Chapman.
Puerto Rican players cannot be deported as the island is a United States territory, but they would have felt the wrath all season long. Ask Carlos Delgado how much he was booed when he refused to stand all the 2004 season for “God Bless America.”
There would have been no pardon no matter what they would have said later, like they were misquoted because of their poor English.
Hunter should look around in his own Angels locker room and start apologizing to his teammates such as Kendry Morales, Bobby Abreu, Joel Piñeiro, Erick Aybar, Fernando Rodney, and Juan Rivera.
Maybe it’s understandable that Hunter has some bitterness and resentment of the present situation of the lack of African-Americans in Major League Baseball, but he has to admit and apologize he was wrong.
By the way, we are in the 2010s, and, for the good sake of baseball, stop the differentiation of whites, African-American, and Latinos.
Major League Baseball must leave alone the diversity issue and understand more than ever it is an international game and there should not be any differentiation of colors.
If you know the Latino Angels players mentioned above, there are some from the lightest (Piñeiro) to the darkest (Rodney) skins. Latinos are brothers no matter their color.
Hunter is saying he did not want to imply he was a racist. Sorry, but if he feels that way, he needs to apologize and move on.
Thank goodness he did not take it also with the Japanese players. New teammate Hideki Matsui would have not been very happy either.
Get ready, Torii, that large Mexican population in Los Angeles will be waiting for you.