Mike Rizzo confronts Braves announcer for questioning Juan Soto's age

Chris Lingebach
August 08, 2018 - 9:55 am

Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo confronted visiting announcer Joe Simpson, over an "unfortunate" remark Simpson made about Juan Soto on the Braves telecast, Tuesday night.

"It was just an uninformed, unfortunate comment by Joe," Rizzo told The Sports Junkies on 106.7 The Fan, sponsored by Burke & Herbert.

In the first game of a doubleheader against visiting Atlanta, and Soto at bat in the seventh inning, Simpson questioned whether the Nats slugger was really only 19 years old.

"If he's 19," Simpson said on Fox Sports Southeast. "He has certainly got his man growth."

"He's been in the game too long. He was a player, been an announcer for a long, long time," Rizzo told The Junkies. "Uninformed. Not in touch and he made a mistake. Like we handled most of the problems in Nationals land, we went up to the booth and we had a man-to-man discussion about it. He apologized for it."

"I'd much rather be talking about the 19-year-old that's tearing up the league and one of the best players, not only on the Nationals team, but in the whole league," Rizzo said. "The stuff that this guy is doing is remarkable and he's truly one of the great players currently in the league right now, and it's unbelievable that we're talking about an age thing when we should be talking about a performance thing."

Soto finished the game going 2-for-2 with three walks and an RBI in the 8-3 Nationals win.

Rizzo made his way about to the Braves TV booth at the conclusion of the first game to address the matter with Simpson. Simpson informed Rizzo he would make it right during the ensuing game broadcast.

"I believe he did that also, so all done," Rizzo said.

"The worst thing about this is that the poor kid may have to answer questions about it, when it's so unfair, and just out of touch and just not accurate," Rizzo said. "That's the unfortunate part of it."

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