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(CBS) In the wake of Ozzie Guillen’s comments regarding Fidel Castro, the team announced Tuesday they will suspend their new manager for five games.
In an interview with Time Magazine, Guillen said: “I love Fidel Castro … I respect Fidel Castro. You know why? A lot of people have wanted to kill Fidel Castro for the last 60 years, but that (expletive) is still there.”
The comments offended many Cuban-Americans in the Miami area, setting off a firestorm of controversy that led to Guillen flying back to Miami to apologize Tuesday while his team has an off day in Philadelphia.
The Marlins released the following statement Tuesday morning:
“The Miami Marlins announced today the suspension of manager Ozzie Guillen for five games effective immediately. The Marlins acknowledge the seriousness of the comments attributed to Guillen. The pain and suffering caused by Fidel Castro cannot be minimized especially in a community filled with victims of the dictatorship.”
At a news conference Tuesday morning, Guillen said his comments were misinterpreted by the reporter, and he doesn’t love or admire the dictator.
“I was saying I cannot believe somebody who hurt so many people over the years is still alive,” Guillen said.
“I’m very sorry about the problem, what happened,” said Guillen, who is only five games into his tenure with the Marlins. “I will do everything in my power to make it better. … I know it’s going to be a very bumpy ride.”
(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS Radio and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)