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ESPN benches host after comments disparaging Dominican Republic

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ESPN radio host Colin Cowherd tossed out a ceremonial pitch before a Aug. 2013 baseball game between the Cincinnati Reds and Chicago Cubs in Chicago. (AP Photo/Jim Prisching, File)

NEW YORK » ESPN says radio host Colin Cowherd won’t be on the air again before leaving the network in the wake of his remarks about major league baseball players from the Dominican Republic.

The network said Friday that "Colin will no longer appear on ESPN." The statement said Cowherd’s comments "do not reflect the values of ESPN or our employees."

Cowherd said Thursday that he didn’t believe baseball was complex, saying a third of the sport was from the Dominican Republic, which had "not been known, in my lifetime, as having, you know, world-class academic abilities."

ESPN said earlier this month that Cowherd was leaving the network amid reports he’s going to Fox Sports 1.

Cowherd said Friday that he didn’t intend to offend anyone with his remarks.

"I realize my choice of words was poor and not reflective of who I am. I am sorry," he said.

Major League Baseball and its players’ union issued statements Friday calling Cowherd’s comments "offensive."

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