Torii Hunter Goes Deeper on Racism He Encountered in Boston and Adds Awful Story About Kansas City

Torii Hunter playing against the Red Sox
Torii Hunter playing against the Red Sox / Winslow Townson/Getty Images

Former MLB All-Star and longtime outfielder Torii Hunter has been in the news a lot over the past week or so, but not for the happiest of reasons. When he revealed that he had a no-trade clause specifically for the Red Sox because of the racism he experienced in Boston, it opened up a larger conversation about Hunter and other Black ballplayers in the MLB dealing with prejudice.

Hunter decided that it would be best to tell his full story rather than let others try to tell it for him with sound bites. As a result, Hunter went on "The Greg Hill Show” on WEEI, the premier sports radio network in the New England region.

In the expansive chat, Hunter made it clear that Boston wasn't the only city in which he heard racial slurs hurled his way.

After being called an N-word by a Royals fan when playing on the road in Kansas City, Hunter recounted to Hill, “our whole team was almost going to jump this guy, but this guy’s kid covered his mouth. The police right next to our dugout got up and took him to a back room, talked to him, interrogated him and banned him for life.”

For Hunter, this was just another instance of racism that he had to deal with in opposing ballparks. He notes that Boston was the biggest culprit, however, which is made even worse when considerig that Hunter once had a desire to play for the Red Sox organization.

“It has nothing to do with Boston Red Sox fans,” Hunter said. “It has something to do with society. That’s why I got the no-trade clause, the list of teams, and I put Boston in there. I love Boston. I wanted to play there. It just hit me that I can’t have my wife and my kids in this area.”

Life is ultimately bigger than baseball. Hunter made it clear that he holds no ill will toward the Boston Red Sox organization, but that racial discrimination is an unavoidable and sad fact of society. He deserves credit for speaking out, and voices like his are needed as the nation attempt to navigate such trying times.