Stephen A. Smith on Tuesday reiterated his apology for saying Shohei Ohtani being the face of baseball isn’t necessarily good for the sport because he has to speak through an interpreter.
Smith apologized to the Asian and Asian American community as well as the Los Angeles Angels star for his words. He said he didn’t intend to offend anyone and if he had intentions to offend someone that his target would know.
“I was wrong. Period. There is no excuse,” he said. “This is not ESPN. This is not Disney. There are a lot of people out there going off about Disney and ESPN … No. This was me. Wasn’t Max [Kellerman]. Wasn’t Molly [Qerim Rose]. Wasn’t the producers on ‘First Take.’ Wasn’t the bosses. It was me. I said it. And the reality is that I was completely clueless as to the kind of impact that this would have on the Asian and Asian American community. That was not my intent at all.
“I just want people to know here’s where I stand. The second that I was informed about how hurt a group of people in this nation were off of what I said, that’s all that matters to me. All that matters to me because I don’t intend to hurt people like that. That’s not who I am, that’s not who I’ve ever been. If I have a problem with you, you would know it. If I mean to offend you, you’d know it. I don’t hide from it. I let you know I’m coming. That wasn’t the case yesterday.