MLB’s Tampa Bay Rays held their 16th annual “Pride Night” last night. Five players cited their “faith” and refused to go along with the uniform changes that the team made to “celebrate” the event.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, pitchers Jason Adam, Jalen Beeks, Brooks Raley, Jeffrey Springs, and Ryan Thompson were among those who didn’t wear the caps and jerseys that were embroidered with rainbow logos.
The team said that it gave players the option to decline to wear those uniforms and instead they were allowed to wear the traditional ones.
Adam was made the spokesman for the group and he said to the Tampa Bay Times. “A lot of it comes down to faith, to like a faith-based decision,” 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,” Adam continued.
Adam then explained that “Just like (Jesus) encourages me as a heterosexual male to abstain from sex outside of the confines of marriage. It’s no different.”
“It’s not judgmental. 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,” Adam concluded.
St. Louis Cardinals Catcher Jack Flaherty, however, didn’t buy the player’s explanations and said in a quote tweet of a report on the situation that he thought it was an “absolute joke.”
absolute joke https://t.co/LKzBZU77wf
— Jack Flaherty (@Jack9Flaherty) June 6, 2022