Joey Votto has apologized for belittling fellow Canadian James Paxton after the pitcher threw a no-hitter in Toronto.
Votto, who is from Toronto, said on a Yahoo! Sports podcast that he "couldn't give a rat's ass" about Paxton being the first Canadian to throw a no-hitter on his home country's soil.
"I don't care almost at all about Canadian baseball," Votto said. "I wasn't raised inside of Canadian baseball really. I'm coming up on half of my life being in the United States working and being supported by American baseball."
In an apology written for the Canadian Baseball Network, Votto said he was "ridiculously selfish and short-sighted" with his answer and is "saddened that I was so flagrant with my remarks and more importantly that I offended so many people that mean so much to me."
Votto won the Lou Marsh Trophy in 2017 as Canada's athlete of the year and played for Team Canada in the World Baseball Classic in 2009 and 2013.
"When asked about baseball in Canada, the Blue Jays and specifically this event, it took me back to the times and my resentment for not making Team Canada in high school, not being drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays out of high school, or not being picked for the Olympic team while in the minor leagues," he wrote.
"Clearly my reply came out of a side of jealousy for a Canadian baseball athlete being celebrated in the city of Toronto. It was an odd reply and one I am terribly ashamed of."