A's broadcaster Glen Kuiper fired after he used racial slur on air
Oakland A's broadcaster Glen Kuiper was fired Monday following his on-air utterance of a racial slur during a pregame show May 5.
The A's denounced the slur as "unacceptable" on the day of the incident. NBC Sports California suspended Kuiper indefinitely a day later.
On Monday, the network released a statement announcing that he has been fired:
“Following an internal review, the decision has been made for NBC Sports California to end its relationship with Glen Kuiper, effective immediately. We thank Glen for his dedication to Bay Area baseball over the years.”
The incident occurred during a pregame show for an A's game at the Kansas City Royals. Kuiper and fellow broadcaster and former A's pitcher Dallas Braden were discussing a visit to the Negro Leagues Museum in Kansas City. Kuiper referenced their trip to the museum but uttered a racial slur in place of the museum's name.
Kuiper then issued an apology during the sixth inning of the A's-Royals game.
"A little bit earlier in the show, I said something, didn't come out quite the way I wanted it to," Kuiper said. "I just wanted to apologize if it sounded different than I meant it to be said. As I said, I just wanted to apologize for that."
He followed with an additional apology the next day, after he was suspended.
“I could not be more sorry and horrified by what I said,” Kuiper said via a statement released by NBCSC. “I hope you will accept my sincerest apologies.”
Negro Leagues Baseball Museum president Bob Kendrick addressed the incident in a tweet following Kuper's suspension.
“I welcomed Glen to the NLBM yesterday and know he was genuinely excited to be here,” Kendrick wrote. “The word is painful and has no place in our society. And while I don’t pretend to know Glen’s heart, I do know that my heart is one of forgiveness. I hope all of you will find it in yourselves to do the same!”
Braden, who was sitting next to Kuiper during the broadcast, also released a statement addressing his lack of a reaction to Kuiper's on-air slur after he received criticism for not addressing it in the moment.
"Several people have questioned my lack of response to an issue that took place on air …” Braden wrote. “I believe my silence has been misinterpreted.
“At the time of the incident, I was not aware that anything in the broadcast was amiss. The nuances of live television mean that sometimes we, as broadcasters, miss some of what you, our audience, see and hear. … I missed the live comment and was not aware of it until the sixth inning when Glen Kuiper made an apology.”
Kuiper, 60, has worked on A's broadcasts since 2004, when he started as an on-field correspondent. He took over as the primary TV play-by-play announcer in 2006 and maintained that position until his suspension and subsequent dismissal. He played two seasons of minor-league baseball as an infielder in 1985 and '86.