After hitting a home run off the Dodgers' Yu Darvish in the second inning, Gurriel made a gesture in the dugout in which he used his fingers to slant his eyes and uttered in Spanish "Chinito", which translates as "Little Chinese person".
Gurriel explained that he was joking with his teammates about how he felt like the home run was the result of Darvish deciding to pitch to him as if he were also Japanese, which doesn't really make any of this any better or less offensive.
"I want to apologize to [Yu Darvish]", Gurriel said, "and tell him I did not mean to offend him".
"I try not to care much about it, but he played in Japan and I have a lot of respect for him, so I try not to think about it too much against him", Darvish said. "Japan opened my doors to the game of baseball and I didn't mean to offend them". "I was commenting to my [teammates] that I hadn't had any good luck against Japanese pitchers here in the U.S".
Darvish initially said he was angry when he found out what Gurriel had done, but later issued a statement on Twitter asking people to forgive Gurriel.
"I've never had anything against Darvish".
Within minutes of Gurriel making his racist gesture it was already being shared and condemned on social media.
He is the first baseman for the Houston Astros and is from Cuba.
Evan Gattis is the Houston Astros' designated hitter and bats seventh in Game 3 on Friday night as the World Series shifts to the American League ballpark. Matt Joyce of the Oakland Athletics and the Blue Jays' Kevin Pillar were both suspended for two games this season after using gay slurs in separate incidents, so there's already some precedent for the commissioner to take action. He won't be forced to miss any games during the 2017 World Series.
Fans praised the pitcher' response, but many were unimpressed with Gurriel's apology. "And then he made a mistake and then we're just going to learn from it. I would also like to apologize to the Dodgers organization, the Astros, Major League Baseball and to all fans across the game", he said.