Mark Grace was trending on Twitter this afternoon thanks to his middle-innings cameo as the third man in the Marquee booth.

Initially announced in January, Marquee’s idea to have a rotating cast of guest broadcasters join Len Kasper and Jim DeShaies. It was a bad idea from the start; Kasper and DeShaies are one of the best broadcasting booths in baseball, and saddling them with a wide, odd lineup of guests seemed very unnecessary at best.

In practice, this ended up being mostly shelved so far thanks to Covid-19, but Mark Grace and Ryan Dempster have still made appearances. Here’s how an earlier appearance from Grace went back on August 3rd:

Today, though, the Diamondbacks studio analyst and longtime Cubs first baseman picked a key moment in Chicago’s game against Milwaukee to launch into a story about his ex-wife parking in Bud Selig’s parking space, in which Grace referred to her as a “dingbat” multiple times. It was bad!

Grace also made a “joke” about how he’d go “Archie Bunker” on her.

You’d have to think that the people at Marquee view this as a feature, not a bug. (And considering both Cubs ownership and who they partnered with for the network, it’s not hard to believe.) Why else would they invite Grace on? This is what he is. It’s especially ironic given the decision to put Kasper and DeShaies in suits and ties regardless of the weather.

It obviously didn’t go over well with a lot of viewers, despite Grace’s longtime history as a fan-favorite.

It was gross! Even if his story had been, you know, not wildly sexist at best, it was completely irrelevant to the actual game being played, and it forced Kasper and DeShaies to try and call the actual game around him while also being way more indulgent than they needed to be.

If there’s one positive, it’s that the swath of Cubs fans with providers that don’t carry Marquee were actually the lucky ones today.

Update: Mark Grace issued an apology after Saturday’s game (via the Chicago Tribune):

“During today’s game I referred to my ex-wife in a way that I absolutely should not have. I want everyone to know how very sorry I am about that. My remarks were offensive and inappropriate, and I deeply apologize.”

There are rumblings Grace won’t be on the next five Marquee broadcasts because of what he said. Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune tweeted, “Word on the street is Mark Grace will be off Cubs broadcasts the next five games for inappropriate comments on his Ex.”

About Jay Rigdon

Jay is a writer and editor for The Comeback, and a contributor at Awful Announcing. He is not a strong swimmer.