PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- New York Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen apologized Wednesday night for having directed a slur once commonly used to denigrate people of Asian descent at a clubhouse translator.
According to an account in The Wall Street Journal, a reporter was speaking with Mets pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka's Asian American interpreter in the clubhouse Monday when Warthen approached.
During the ensuing conversation, the pitching coach reportedly apologized to the interpreter, Jeff Cutler, for previously using the word in a joking manner.
But Warthen mentioned the slur while issuing that apology. And the reporter, a Chinese American from San Francisco, became offended by Warthen repeating the word. The conversation reportedly went like this:
"I'm sorry I called you a Chinaman yesterday," Warthen said.
"It's OK," Cutler said.
"I didn't mean to insinuate -- I know you're not Chinese. I thought it was a pretty good joke, though."
Once the Journal article was published Wednesday, Warthen and general manager Sandy Alderson apologized via statements.
"I apologize for the thoughtless remarks that I made yesterday in the clubhouse," Warthen's statement read. "They were a poor attempt at humor, but were wrong and inappropriate in any setting. I am very sorry."
Alderson's statement read: "On behalf of the entire organization, I apologize for the insensitive remarks made by of one of our staff members. The remarks were offensive and inappropriate and the organization is very sorry."
Alderson declined Thursday morning to indicate whether Warthen faced any discipline.
"I've got nothing to add or say about it," the GM said.
Warthen said it is business as usual for him. He remained on the travel list for the Mets' road game at Viera, Fla., against the Washington Nationals.
"I issued the statement. I put out the apology," Warthen said Thursday. "I'm sticking by the statement. I already made the apologies to all the appropriate people. I don't think there's any ill feelings by any of the people in this room. I made a mistake. I live up to it. It will not happen again."
Warthen, 61, pitched four seasons in the majors with Montreal, Philadelphia and Houston. He has been the Mets' pitching coach since June 2008.