Matthew Ross, the host of Weekend game plan on TSN 690 in Montreal, has apologized for comments he made on social media on Tuesday about Alejandro Kirk’s body.
“The words were harsh, the sentiment was out of bounds and I deeply regret it,” he wrote.
While tweeting about a doubleheader play against the Tampa Bay Rays, Ross criticized fans’ admiration for the hustle and bustle of Toronto Blue Jays catcher Alejandro Kirk when he scored from first base.
“It’s cute and all, but it’s also embarrassing for the sport,” Ross said in a since-deleted tweet. “Giving guys like this out feeds negatively” [baseball] stereotypes.”
Under the backlash Ross immediately faced, pitcher Alek Manoah, Kirk’s teammate and battery mate, also took to Twitter to defend his good friend. And the 6-foot-6 pitcher pulled no punches either.
Manoah relied on Ross’s body shaming comments, and rightly so. Baseball players come in all shapes and sizes, which the 285-pound right-hander certainly mentioned.
Ross then doubled down on his initial comments, saying he was trying to defend the sport.
“You’re too narrow-minded to see me DEFEND baseball,” he replied. “Ratings, attendance and interest in younger demographics have dropped. And the image of the athletes, and who is being marketed to the masses, matters.
“Imagine how much better he would be if he was in better shape.”
Manoah replied that Kirk—a 5-foot 8,245-pound catcher—had been selected by fans for his first All-Star Game in July.
Justice was eventually served when Manoah and Blue Jays Twitter overwhelmed Ross’ mentions, eventually causing him to delete his profile.
Manoah has never been shy about his appreciation of Kirk, who has served as his personal catcher all season. Their relationship was fully manifested during the July All-Star Game at Dodger Stadium, when the All-Star wore a microphone for the first time during his outing.
The 24-year-old has been a workhorse for the Blue Jays this season, with a record 177.2 innings in his career in 28 starts. He has a 2.43 ERA and was worth 3.5 fWAR in 2022.
Most importantly, however, the young right-winger always defends his teammates, on and off the pitch.
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