At the end of Bruce Bochy’s pregame interview in the dugout, Henry Schulman asked him if he had a response to Tony Bruno’s deleted tweet on Friday night that referred to Bochy as a “coward” and Ramon Ramirez as an “illegal alien.”
Bochy said he had no response to being called a coward, and laughed off the notion that he had something to do with Shane Victorino getting hit in the back by a Ramirez fastball, making a joke about “calling Ramirez on the cellphone” while he was on the mound. Bochy went on to say, “I don’t even know who the guy is” in regards to the nationally syndicated radio host, which is plausible if you believe that Bochy found Gary Radnich’s show to be as unlistenable as Radnich finds The Bruce Bochy show heard before every game.
(Radnich’s common complaint is that Bochy never says anything. In Bruno’s case, he probably now wishes he acted a little more like Bochy on Friday evening.)
Bochy wrapped up his thoughts by (surprise) saying something. Bochy had this to say about Bruno’s line about Ramirez:
“For a guy to make a racist comment like that and have the ear of so many people, that bothers me. I can defend myself as a coward. I don’t know if you can defend yourself making a racist comment.”
Not exactly Felipe Alou going on “Outside the Lines” and castigating Larry Krueger’s “brain-dead Caribbean hitters” comment back in 2005, but definitely a sign that Bruno’s comments were offensive to more than just the people on Twitter who read the tweet before it was quickly deleted.
It’s clear that this story, which yesterday was picked up by SF Gate, Deadspin, Yahoo, NESN, The Huffington Post, Baseball Nation and others, is still on the minds of many. Since arriving in the press box about an hour ago, I’ve heard several people talking about it, and beyond the news that Barry Zito would start on Monday in San Jose (Zito was warming up on the field around 10:45 this morning), Bochy’s thoughts on Bruno were the highlight of an otherwise mundane interview session.
Update: here’s video of Bochy’s response I took before the game: