Friday, June 9, 2023

An Open Letter to the Toronto Blue Jays

You can send the Blue Jays your own feedback at

Hi Blue Jays! I'm a queer baseball fan who subscribed to MLBTV this year to be able to watch a larger variety of games, and I have enjoyed watching a whole bunch of Blue Jays games so far this season. I usually pick which game to watch on any given day in part based on my feelings about the pitchers involved. Now, usually - and preferably - those feelings are based on their actual pitching abilities. Unfortunately, now when I'm deciding whether to watch a Blue Jays game, you've put me in the position of thinking "Sure, I'd like to watch a Kevin Gausman or Chris Bassitt start, but does that mean I'm going to end up watching a reliever who thinks I'm evil and demonic?"

It's one thing, I suppose, to continue employing a player who amplifies hate speech and then - in his so-called apology! - doubles down on the fact that yes, according to his beliefs it is evil and demonic to support a segment of the fan base who belongs to a marginalized group. But it's quite another to center this person at a Pride event by having him catch the first pitch. Pride should center LGBTQIAP+ people. Pride should not be used as a mere vehicle for the PR rehabilitation of a straight cis man who has shown no hints of reconsidering his homophobia and transphobia. I genuinely hope that Anthony Bass does learn and grow in his beliefs, but there has been no evidence of that as yet.

I live in New Hampshire and have been looking forward to attending some Fisher Cats games this season - including their Pride Night in a few weeks - but now their affiliation with the Blue Jays is making me wonder whether that event will actually be a safe and welcoming place for me and my friends.


Katherine Welsh