This has been one wholly horrible season for Major League Baseball, and the news from tonight’s broadcasts isn’t likely to make things any better.
This was always going to be a season with a major asterisks next to it, on account of the global coronavirus pandemic and the abbreviations deemed necessary on account of it. Heck, in the first week alone, there were days with 20% of the entire schedule either postponed or canceled on account of viral breakouts among the teams.
When it’s all said and done, this year may as well be referred to as “2*2*”.
Now, in the midst of this already bizarre campaign, we have a whole new controversy to deal with.
In an apparent hot mic moment, Cincinnati Reds broadcaster Thom Brennaman was caught uttering a homophobic slur between innings on Wednesday. Less than two hours later, he was apologizing and exiting the booth.
Before the seventh inning in Game 1 of Wednesday’s doubleheader against the Kansas City Royals, viewers heard Brennaman calling an unknown area ‘the f– capital of the world.’ Brennaman did not seem aware he was on the air, and soon started plugging a Reds pregame show on Fox Sports Ohio.
You can see video of the slur here, with the obvious warning that it contains a bit of very NSFW language.
Video of the moment began circulating online between games of the doubleheader. Brennaman stayed to call the second game, with no acknowledgement of the slur even as many started calling for his job on social media. That is, until the fifth inning, at which point Brennaman was removed from the broadcast.
The video can be seen here, but we must warn you that the language is intense.
Here's a better video with the full bit of the perceived tHom homophobic comment at around the 2:06 mark of the game. pic.twitter.com/g1yBHg8zA0
— Church of Baseball ⚾ (@churchofbasebal) August 19, 2020
In this new nation where “cancel culture” is culture all its own, we can only imagine the lengthy road back to The Bigs that this announcer will need to take.