ESPN Cleveland Reporter Suspended After Derogatory Comments Toward Baker Mayfield

Author:
Publish date:

ESPN Cleveland radio reporter Tony Grossi has been suspended indefinitely for using a derogatory term to describe Baker Mayfield, the station announced Tuesday.

Grossi referred to Mayfield as a "f------ midget" at the end of a tirade that criticized the 24-year-old relative to other quarterbacks the Browns could have acquired since the franchise drafted the former Heisman Trophy winner first overall in 2018.

"[Carson] Wentz, [Deshaun] Watson, [Patrick] Mahomes and now [Joe] Burrow," Grossi said. "And who do we got? A f------- midget."

Mayfield is listed at 6' 1"—just one inch shorter than Watson and two inches shorter than Mahomes. 

The word "midget," associated with people with dwarfism, is considered by the Little People of America as a pejorative.

"The dwarfism community has voiced that they prefer to be referred to as dwarfs, little people, people of short stature or having dwarfism, or simply, and most preferably, by their given name," the organization wrote in a statement in 2015.

During the 2019 season, Mayfield stormed off from a press gaggle after Grossi asked a question. The second-year quarterback referred to the reporter's question as "the dumbest question you could ask."

The two sides have shown animosity toward each other for much of Mayfield's career.