Mike Schmidt was forced to apologize after a joke he told at the expense of the #MeToo movement during a Phillies broadcast landed with a thud.
Schmidt, the Hall of Fame third baseman who has been calling Sunday Phillies games on NBC Sports Philadelphia since 2014, was discussing an injury to a pitcher during Sunday’s 10-1 loss to the Atlanta Braves when the conversation made an unlikely detour into #MeToo territory.
Schmidt’s joke was prompted when reporter Gregg Murphy brought up a tweet by Amanda McCarthy, wife of Braves pitcher Brandon McCarthy. Amanda McCarthy wrote that her husband “can’t do the dishes” after dislocating his shoulder, despite having “popped it back in, then just walked around normal.”
During the broadcast, Schmidt joked: “I’ve got a dishwasher at home myself … my wife. Me Too movement. Where does that fit in?”
“I made a mistake while attempting to be humorous,” Schmidt said in a statement released by NBC Sports Philadelphia. “It was not my intention to offend anyone. My daughter passionately marches in support of the Me Too movement in Boston, and I support her in every way. I offer my sincerest apologies.”
Unsurprisingly, there were a lot of opinions about Schmidt’s joke. Liz Roscher, who has written about the Phillies for SB Nation and various other outlets, wrote that it’s well past time for the Hall of Famer to stop talking into microphones.
“Let me be clear: Mike Schmidt was a legendary baseball player. But he’s not a great broadcaster, and it’s time to can1cel the rest of his weekends in the booth this season — and forever,” Roscher wrote. “Normally, he adds nothing to the broadcast, but these days, he’s actively making it worse, and he’s taking everyone else down with him.”
Others were more forgiving. SportsRadio WIP host Glen Macnow didn’t defend Schmidt, but called out the level of outcry his joke has created online.
“Geez, can we lay off Mike Schmidt for a lame joke? Enough with the social media outrage,” Macnow wrote on Twitter, adding in a later response, “I didn’t say anyone had to like the joke. But let’s just roll our eyes and move on.”
Lindsey Adler, who covers the Yankees and the Mets for The Athletic, responded to Schmidt’s joke with a joke of her own.
This isn’t the first time Schmidt has been forced to apologize for his remarks. Last season, he offered a public apology to Odubel Herrera for suggesting on 94.1 WIP’s morning show that the team couldn’t build around the Phillies center fielder because his first language is Spanish.
“I’m very sorry that this misrepresentation of my answer occurred and may have offended someone,” Schmidt said at the time. “Odubel is a dynamo on the field, and as he becomes more comfortable with the language, his leadership skills will improve, and no doubt he will be a centerpiece in the Phillies future.”