Votto, a native of Etobicoke, Ont., made the comments on Yahoo!’s baseball podcast when asked about the recent no-hitter thrown by fellow Canadian James Paxton in Toronto. But in a written statement on the Canadian Baseball Network, Votto apologized and expanded on his reaction in a conversation with Sportsnet’s Jamie Campbell.
“My comments, I think, came from a place of jealousy,” Votto said on Blue Jays Central Wednesday. “My comments came from a place of pettiness where I was thinking, ‘Where’s my moment? Where’s my big Toronto (or) Canadian moment.’ I grew up loving the Jays and I love the city. I love the country of Canada.”
“I’m completely regretful and I’m saddened that I took that route but clearly that’s on me,” he added.
Later this summer on “Players Weekend,” when players choose what to wear on the backs of their jerseys, Votto will wear “In Flanders Fields” as a tribute to the poem by Canadian Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae.