Former Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio referred to a clubhouse attendant as a “monkey,” leading the Detroit Tigers to fire him this week, according to two published reports.
Bosio was fired Wednesday by the Tigers, who said he made insensitive remarks to a team employee. Bosio referred to the attendant, who is African American, as a “monkey” after a game last week, according to the Athletic and USA Today.
Bosio was going on a rant about one of the Tigers’ pitchers when he gestured toward the attendant and said: “Like this monkey here,” according to the Athletic.
In his first public comments, Bosio told USA Today a slightly different story.
Bosio said he wasn’t referring to the clubhouse attendant when he said “monkey,” according to USA Today. He claims he called Tigers pitcher Daniel Stumpf “spider monkey” for the faces he makes when he works out, USA Today reported.
But Stumpf told the Detroit Free Press he had never before heard that nickname.
“Spider Monkey is not a nickname I have been called or I’m familiar with,” Stumpf told the Free Press.
Bosio was “crushed” by the news of his firing and believe he “doesn’t deserve this,” according to USA Today.
The Tigers gave Bosio that chance to apologize to the attendant, but he declined to do so, the Athletic reported.
The Tigers announced on Wednesday that Bosio’s contract was terminated because of insensitive comments that violated team policy. The team said it holds employees “to the highest standards of personal conduct on and off the field,” adding it has zero tolerance for Bosio’s behavior.
Cubs manager Joe Maddon said the team was “saddened” to hear of Bosio’s firing.
“He was Boz. He’s a blunt object,” Maddon said on Wednesday. “There’s difficult conversations, but we didn’t have that issue.”
Contributing: Sun-Times wires