Yu Darvish Must Make Yuli Gurriel Pay For His Bigotry Towards Asians

Yu Darvish didnt like what Yuli Gurriel did, but he let it slide for the good of the team. For the moment. He didnt want some idiotic, racially insensitive gesture to define the World Series that he worked so hard to become a part of. He didn’t want the city of Houston,  where Asians are the fastest growing population, to be tainted by Gurriel’s bigotry. He took it in stride and is no doubt using it as motivation for his Game 7 World Series start tonight. 

Yuli Gurriel gesture video | Mocks Yu Darvish

Yuli Gurriel gesture video mocks Yu Darvish. Gurriel’s gesture was offensive to some as he seemed to mock Yu Darvish. The world was watching when Yuli Gurriel made a racially charged gesture during Friday’s World Series game. It came after a moment of triumph: The Houston Astros first baseman had just hit a home run off of Dodgers pitcher Yu Darvish.

Gurriel, one of the key members and older players on the Houston Astros at age 33, had been caught by television cameras during Game 3 of the World Series making a gesture and mouthing a word with racial overtones targeting Asian Americans. His actions rekindled the long-running discussion about anti-Asian stereotypes and slurs in American culture.

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Yuli Gurriel to be interviewed and possibly disciplined by MLB for appearing to mock Yu Darvish with racist gesture https://t.co/P0M91xjTYh

After hitting a home run off  Darvish, Gurriel put his fingers to the sides of his face, lifted the corners of his eyes and mouthed the negative term “chinito,” Spanish for “Chinese boy.” Darvish, who was born in Japan, is of Japanese and Iranian descent.

Gurriel got caught up in the moment and his true feelings came out. Sort of like Texans owner Bob McNair, but outside of an outraged and often overlooked Asian community and a five-game suspension from baseball which will begin next season because the league reasoned that it didnt want to penalize everyone for one persons actions, everybody pretty much kept it moving. 

In retrospect, it seems that how it affected the Asian community as a whole didnt really matter.  The Asian community was offended, but the entire country should have been offended. 

Baseball could have sent a message that it will in no way tolerate any form of racial bigotry. Instead it was swept under the rug, not to mess up an exciting and money generating classic of a World Series. Baseballs stance on the issue is similar to the NFL owners trying to make protesters stand because their concern for lives is messing with the NFLs money. 

It was a big swing and a miss by Robert Manfred and crew. Baseball had a chance to make a statement in light of the incident we had at Fenway Park earlier in the season with Adam Jones, the climate of the country and the role that baseball takes pride in playing as a facilitator of diversity in sports and this country. 

If Gurriel, a person of color himself, had called Darvish the N-word, there would have been more substantial outrage from both blacks and whites, but he used a term derogatory to Asians, so in the minds of many, it just wasnt as important. 

Thats the exact kind of thinking and race prioritizing that we have to eliminate in this country. 

As Jackie Robinson did when he had to fight the terrors of racism with this humility and performance on the field, Darvish will have the opportunity to get the last laugh and shine in the face of bigotry when he faces Gurriel and the Dodgers in an-all-or-nothing World Series Game 7. 

Darvish can break the hearts of the Astros with an A + performance. He has the stuff to shut the Astros lineup down and now the mild mannered Japanese and Iranian hurler has the extra incentive needed to become a permanent part of MLB history. 

Yu Darvish- “Slippery”

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You cant help but root for Darvish. He deserved better than what he got. More respect. Baseball deserved better than for a player to try and sabotage and paint an historic World Series as a platform for racial bigotry and offensive speech towards Asians. 

Gurriel won’t pay for his actions until next season. In the meantime, Darvish has got to make him pay at the dish by dominating. Preferably with a golden sombrero. 

JR Gamble joined The Shadow League in 2012. The General Manager of Content & Social Media is in his 25th year of covering sports and culture professionally. He has covered a wide variety of major sports and entertainment topics across different mediums, including radio, newspapers, magazines and national TV. His passion is baseball, the culturing of baseball and preserving and documenting the historically-impactful accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans in baseball.