Speed Reads

What Did He Just Say?

Oakland Athletics announcer suspended after using racial slur on air

Oakland Athletics play-by-play announcer Glen Kuiper has been suspended after using a racial slur during a live game broadcast. 

The incident occurred during the pregame show on Friday, prior to Oakland's away game against the Kansas City Royals. Kuiper was sitting in the broadcast booth with analyst Dallas Braden discussing a visit the pair took to Kansas City's Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. However, Kuiper can clearly be heard referring to the site as the "[slur] League Museum."

While ESPN reported that Kuiper may have just mispronounced the word "Negro" accidentally, this did not appear to be the case from video footage of the incident. 

After the game started, Kuiper apologized on air during the sixth inning, saying, "Something didn't quite come out the way I wanted it to, and I just wanted to apologize if it sounded different than I meant it to be said. I just wanted to apologize for that." 

The Athletics' communications department tweeted a statement calling the language used by Kuiper "unacceptable. The Oakland Athletics do not condone such language. We are working to address the situation." The team has not commented on the situation beyond this statement. 

Kuiper has been calling Athletics games for more than 20 years and has been a broadcaster for Bay Area baseball on NBC Sports California since 1992, according to the team's media guide. Following Kuiper's remarks, a representative for NBC Sports told the San Francisco Chronicle's Matt Kawahara that the announcer had been suspended, and will be off the air until a review of Friday's game is complete. 

This is not the first time that an MLB commentator has gotten into hot water over an insensitive comment. In 2020, Cincinnati Reds broadcaster Thom Brennaman was caught on a hot mic making a homophobic statement. Though he later apologized, he was fired by the Reds.