Former Jay Kelly Gruber makes 'inappropriate' comments toward female panel host
A sports media company is apologizing after former Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Kelly Gruber made "inappropriate" comments toward the host of a charity baseball discussion on Thursday.
Gruber was part of a Homestand Sports Pitch Talks panel for a Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame event at the Rec Room in Toronto, alongside TV personality Ashley Docking and retired MLB first baseman Kevin Barker.
Homestand Sports said in a statement released on Twitter that Gruber, who played on Toronto's 1992 World Series winning team, came on stage late and directed "insulting comments" at Docking and also made "inappropriate comments" to a female staff member of the Rec Room.
Statement regarding last night’s <a href="https://twitter.com/CDNBaseballHOF?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@CDNBaseballHOF</a> + Pitch Talks event and Kelly Gruber’s behaviour. <a href="https://t.co/s0EmZj8lln">pic.twitter.com/s0EmZj8lln</a>—@PitchTalks
In a video posted to the company's Twitter account, Gruber can be seen making suggestive comments to Docking and telling her that she doesn't belong on panel.
"We don't really need this girl here, right?" Gruber said.
"Wow. Respect at an all-time high, I see," responded Docking, as the crowd booed Gruber.
"Yeah. I'm not vying for a job," said Gruber."
"Wow. You're in a pleasant mood today, Kelly. Hi, nice to meet you," said Docking.
Gruber later suggests he is joking.
"I'm just playing. We from Texas. We play. We have fun," he said.
Homestand Sports said it decided to end the programming at the event 45 minutes early following the incident and removed Gruber from the stage "as quickly as possible."
"It is our firm belief that no one should be made to feel uncomfortable, unsafe, or should endure forms of harassment whether it be in the workplace, at home or on street," said the statement.
"The Homestand team, including talent and crew, is a family with a shared love for sports. We look out for each other, and we have a zero tolerance policy for hatred and bullying, including sexism and harassment of any kind."
Thanks to everyone who came out last night to the <a href="https://twitter.com/CDNBaseballHOF?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@CDNBaseballHOF</a> event!!<br><br>Photo <a href="https://twitter.com/jumpinJoe29?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@jumpinJoe29</a> <a href="https://t.co/fxWUxpoXUv">pic.twitter.com/fxWUxpoXUv</a>—@PitchTalks
The statement adds that Gruber has been asked to refrain from participating in all remaining events related to the induction of the 2018 Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame class.
Former MLB players Pedro Martinez and Lloyd Moseby, as well as baseball historian William Humber, are set to be inducted on Saturday.
Gruber played 10 seasons in the majors, nine with the Blue Jays.
He was arrested for driving while intoxicated in Texas