Guillen apologized for his comments, saying that he didn't intend to say he loved or respected Castro, but that it came out that way in English, because he was thinking in Spanish, his native tongue.
Over 200 fans protested Guillen outside the stadium as he issued his apology, and it looks like his next move will be to work to patch things up with the fans he offended.
Guillen will be suspended without pay for 5 games by the team, and does not plan to fight it at all.
Good call by Guillen, who knows that his job is a rather precarious one, and he'll need to get the fans back on his side if he hopes to stick around for long. The Marlins have suffered from poor attendance for years, and there will be no reason to keep Guillen around if he continues to alienate the fan base.
Commissioner Bud Selig released a statement saying that Major League Baseball supports the Marlins' decision to suspend Guillen. Here's the statement from Selig:
Some fans still aren't happy, and want Guillen fired on the spot for his comments. While it may be understandable, I believe the Marlins are handling this properly.
For those who think the suspension is too extreme, or who cite "free speech" as the reason Guillen shouldn't face punishment for his comments, it's important to keep in mind that the Marlins have the freedom of speech as an organization, as well. By suspending Guillen, they are making a clear statement that they strongly disagree with his comments and will not tolerate the glorification of brutal dictators, particularly ones who are hated by a huge portion of their fan base.
Kudos to the Marlins and Major League Baseball for taking a stand on a politically charged issue. Hopefully this is the last time Ozzie attempts to talk politics in public.