The punishment came a day after Gurriel's actions toward the Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher during Game 3. Now, MLB, which will meet with Gurriel before Game 4 on Saturday, could come to him and the Astros and advise that taking a suspension without a fight is what's best for the league, given the racially-charged climate in the sports world right now. "I said I thought maybe they saw me as they did see themselves and I wanted to see if they would throw me a pitch like that". While sitting in the dugout, Gurriel put his fingers to the side of his eyes and said "chinito" - a derogatory Spanish term that translates literally to "little Chinese".
"I sincerely apologize to everyone that I offended with my actions", Gurriel said. I didn't want to offend anybody in Japan. "I deeply regret it", Gurriel said in a statement. He will also receive sensitivity training and personally apologize to pitcher Yu Darvish.
It is believed the Major League Baseball Players Assn. opposed a suspension during the World Series.
After the game, Darvish called the gesture by Gurriel disrespectful but said he still respected his opponent and that everyone should use it as a learning opportunity.
"There is no question that it is a hard decision as to when the right timing was", Manfred said. "The Astros will donate Yuli's salary for these five games in equal parts to the Astros Foundation and to a charity directly supporting diversity efforts". I'm sure Darvish did.
"I just feel bad", Gurriel told the NY Times. In addition, he later wrote "let's stay positive and move forward" on Twitter, part of a statement remarkable for its magnanimity, especially given the huge disappointment Darvish no doubt felt over Friday's pitching performance, in which he lasted less than two innings, gave up six hits and four runs. "He played in Japan and I have respect for him". Darvish is of Japanese and Iranian descent. The four-time All-Star played professionally in Japan from 2005-11 before joining the Texas Rangers in 2012. He was traded to the Dodgers at this year's July 31 trade deadline.
On that note, Manfred said he felt it was unfair to punish Gurriel's 24 active teammates for his individual actions during the World Series.
Gurriel was born in Cuba and played there and in Japan in 2014 before coming to Major League Baseball a year ago. Toronto's Kevin Pillar and Oakland's Matt Joyce were each banned for two games this season after making homophobic comments.