In the wake of multiple players for the Tampa Bay Rays choosing to forgo the wearing of a rainbow colored logo on their jerseys and hats for “Pride Night” due to what they are citing as religious beliefs, one pitcher from the St. Louis Cardinals has taken to mocking them all over social media.
Brooks Raley, Jalen Beeks, Jason Adam, Jeffrey Springs, and Ryan Thompson of the rays stated that they were not comfortable wearing the LGBT-themed patch on Saturday evening at the upcoming home game against the Chicago White Sox.
Jack Flaherty, a pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals, made fun of the player’s choices, calling it an “absolute joke.”
absolute joke https://t.co/LKzBZU77wf
— Jack Flaherty (@Jack9Flaherty) June 6, 2022
Adam claimed, “A lot of it comes down to faith, to like a faith-based decision,” stated a report from the Tampa Bay Times. “So it’s a hard decision. Because ultimately we all said what we want is them to know that all are welcome and loved here..”
“But when we put it on our bodies, I think a lot of guys decided that it’s just a lifestyle that maybe — not that they look down on anybody or think differently — it’s just that maybe we don’t want to encourage it if we believe in Jesus, who’s encouraged us to live a lifestyle that would abstain from that behavior, just like (Jesus) encourages me as a heterosexual male to abstain from sex outside of the confines of marriage. It’s no different,” he went on.
“It’s not judgmental,” he finished. “It’s not looking down. It’s just what we believe the lifestyle he’s encouraged us to live, for our good, not to withhold. But again, we love these men and women, we care about them, and we want them to feel safe and welcome here.”
“I’m proud of the fact we did this and so many of our players chose to wear the logo,” stated Matt Silverman, the president of the Rays, in an interview with The New York Times. “I’m also proud of the conversations we had during the run-up to this night and in the aftermath. That’s a really good byproduct of this: to be able to actually have these conversations is really valuable and rare.”
Kevin Cash, the manager of the Rays, claimed that this divide among the players concerning the uniforms was not at all a problem, stating, “First and foremost, I think the organization has done a really good thing to have Pride Night’s supporting our gay community to come out and have a nice night at the ballpark,” stated Cash. “Impressed that our players have had those conversions and we want to support our players that choose to wear or choose not to wear to the best of our capabilities.”