Doosan Bears' infielder Jorge Cantu has been under fire for his racist remarks on Twitter.
The first baseman Monday re-tweeted an edited photo of several Korean high school students with the face of a male student cropped and placed on the face of every student in the picture, insinuating all Koreans look alike.
The photo was titled "Desafio," which is Portuguese for "challenge," and is followed by five challenges which obviously aim at making fun of how Koreans look.
They are: "Which student is sleeping?" "Find twin brothers in the photo." "Find twin sisters." "How many girls are there in the photo?" "Which one is a teacher?"
The 32-year-old former Major League player immediately removed the posting since it started to draw strong criticism on the Internet. Later, he said he had no intention of making racist comments through the post.
But Internet users strongly criticized his careless action, and it was disappointing news for his fans, who have praised his impressive performance and contributions to the team.
He has recorded a batting average of .296 in 36 games this season with 11 homers and 32 RBIs to help the Bears move up fast in the standings in recovering from a poor start.
The Seoul-based club was in fourth place as of Monday, sitting only 1.5 games back of the Samsung Lions in the top spot.
With many foreign players joining the domestic league, it is said there is a growing risk for racial discrimination against them. But it is rare that a foreign athlete is on the hot seat due to his or her racist remarks.
The latest discrimination by a Korean player against a foreign athlete took place last year, as Hanwha Eagles star Kim Tae-kyun made a racist remark about Lotte Giants pitcher Shane Youman.
Kim said during an Internet radio show in June that Youman was his most challenging pitcher because his face was so black and his teeth are so white, making it hard for him to see and hit Youman's pitches.
After the incident, Kim issued a quick apology, and the National Human Rights Commission of Korea demanded the Korea Baseball Organization prevent the recurrence of such incidents in the future.