Dominican Prospect League Demands Action After Juan Soto Age Comments
- The Dominican Prospect League (DPL) is demanding that Atlanta Braves announcer Joe Simpson sits out broadcasting at least 1 game.
- The DPL’s demand to Simpson follows a comment he made that questioned whether Washington Nationals player Juan Soto is really 19-years-old.
- Simpson said, “He is … if he’s 19, he has certainly got his man growth. He is big and strong.”
The DPL has issued a statement, via its official Instagram account, calling for Braves broadcaster Joe Simpson to take at least 1 game off from his normal duties. If he refuses, then the DPL asks that either the Braves, Major League Baseball or even the team’s/league’s sponsors to do something about what it found to be “denigration of Juan Soto.”
Simpson’s comment that Soto “has certainly got his man growth” is perceived as a claim that he is a cheater, per the DPL.
“If you are not penalized in some fashion, you, your thoughts, and your words are, in effect, deemed acceptable by the powers that be. We are here to make sure you hear that your words and inferences are understood to be wrong,” states a portion of the DPL official statement.
The frustration is likely not bred from this comment alone. Dominican players are constantly questioned, often without cause on a case-by-case basis. While the specific text of Simpson’s statement may not seem to be as harsh as described by the DPL, the organization appears to be more interested in creating a culture shift than anything. It is quite clear that the DPL sees this as Simpson making a comment strictly due to the player’s race and origin.
“Why didn’t you question a young Chipper Jones’ age when he dawned a Braves uniform for the first time? Why didn’t you question a young Bryce Harper’s age when he dawned a National’s uniform at age 19? Why didn’t you question a 19-year-old Robin Yount’s age when he broke records?,” asks the DPL in its statement.