Giants reliever Derek Holland went on MLB Network’s Intentional Talk yesterday afternoon, wearing a wig and a Bob Ross cutoff t-shirt. If that was the extent of Holland’s comedic efforts, it would have been unfunny, but generally fine.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t all. Holland brought along Giants massage therapist Haro Ogawa, whose entire job was to essentially stand there and play along with whatever Holland did. Which, again, whatever, except for that Holland included a weird series of bows while saying “Much respect”, as well as this gem of an “Asian” accent at the end of the segment:
derek holland brought his “hype man” onto an intentional talk interview. the hype man spends the entire interview silent except when addressed.
holland then impersonates a strong asian accent to play for laughs. that’s the entire joke. that holland uses an asian accent. come on. pic.twitter.com/N3qhoYncro
— Joon Lee (@joonlee) August 22, 2018
That’s…very bad, even if (in the best case scenario) it just comes from a misguided sense of what’s funny.
Getting the sense that some people think I'm defending what he did. Just the opposite. It was trash. But I wasn't exactly surprised, that's all.
— Grant Brisbee (@GrantBrisbee) August 23, 2018
The interview made its way to MLB.com, although the version there had the more offensive portions cut out. (Though at around the 5:40 mark you do still get a bow.)
Of course, the creative editing does also spare Kevin Millar, who opened the interview with a loud “Konnichiwa!”, which manages to be offensive on multiple levels.
All in all, this sucked to the point that Holland had to apologize for it:
Derek Holland apologized for yesterday’s appearance on MLB network, said he has apologized to Haro and Taira, two team employees who are Japanese. Said it was a bit that went too far and was embarrassing.
— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) August 23, 2018
You’d think it wouldn’t be that hard to avoid incidents like this, but here we are.