Yuli Gurriel had his chance to try and make amends for his racist gesture.
When the Houston Astros’ first baseman stepped into the box during Game 7 of the World Series on Wednesday, he removed his helmet and tipped it toward Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Yu Darvish. Despite the move, Gurriel was booed mercilessly by the Dodger Stadium crowd during the first-inning at-bat and before the game during introductions.
In Game 3 on Friday in Houston, Darvish was the target of Gurriel’s gesture – pulling at the corner of his eyes while reportedly calling the pitcher “chinito” (little Chinese) after hitting a second-inning home run off him. The Astros won 5-3.
Gurriel was suspended for five games, but the ban isn’t effective until the start of the 2018 regular season.
On Wednesday, Darvish needed 13 pitches to get Gurriel to fly out. It was the only time in Game 7 they faced each other, as Darvish was lifted after 1 2/3 innings with the Astros leading 5-0.
Gurriel and Darvish faced each other in Japan, and the Astro said he was just celebrating against someone he’d struggled against.
“I think he’s one of the best pitchers in Japan, and I never had success against him,” Gurriel said late last week, according to The Associated Press. “If he felt offended, I want to apologize to him.”
Darvish told AP that a meeting wasn’t necessary because “I’m not that mad” at Gurriel.
While Darvish isn’t upset, some people on social media were. Here’s a sampling: