The Toronto Blue Jays released pitcher Anthony Bass hours before their Pride Night this season, following prolonged backlash over an anti-LGBTQ+ social media post.
And now, the homophobic hurler is whining about his self-induced plight.
In an interview with the Canadian Press, Bass spoke on the record for the first time since his release, saying it “wasn’t a baseball decision.”
In fact, the right-hander says he considered filing a grievance complaint against the Blue Jays, but the players’ union dissuaded him, since Toronto was still paying his guaranteed $3 million salary.
Yes, Bass still collected his full salary after sharing a post from evangelist Ryan Miller, who called Target’s Pride collection “evil” and “demonic.”
What a victim! Our gay hearts bleed for the MLB journeyman.
Despite this, Bass threatened he may still file a grievance if he can’t get a job this offseason.
“If this causes future issues, I think there is a strong case to be had,” he said.
While he cites his strong performance in May as evidence the Blue Jays cut him for non-baseball reasons, he posted a mediocre 4.95 ERA with Toronto overall. He owns a 3.91 career ERA, playing for seven different teams in 12 seasons.
During one of Bass’ last appearances with the Blue Jays May 31, he was booed out of the stadium.
Originally, the Blue Jays planned for Bass to catch the ceremonial first pitch before their Pride festivities in early June, as an apparent way to make amends. But he scuttled those plans with a defiant statement, in which he affirmed his right to share his personal anti-gay views.
“The video itself, obviously, I took it down,” Bass said, via The Athletic. “I just felt like it was too much of a distraction, right? But I stand by my personal beliefs and everyone’s entitled to their personal beliefs, right?”
The Blue Jays cut Bass shortly thereafter. Team executive Mark Shapiro told reporters this week he’s satisfied with how the organization handled the mess.
But Shapiro didn’t elaborate, indicating the team is bracing for a legal entanglement.
Following Bass’ latest comments, Jays reporter Eric Treuden posted that a source “close to the situation” told him several players were planning to boycott Pride Night after Bass was released.
If true, that would’ve been a complete disaster, and low point for MLB when it comes to LGBTQ+ inclusion efforts. Whoever advised those players to stand down made the right call.
Another one of these dudes that’s not worth the distraction. He’s not good enough— JA (@bookedupday) October 12, 2023
No one was boycotting over that loser…— Meg Mc (@MeggMacc) October 12, 2023
It was a mixed Pride season for MLB, with multiple players exposed for expressing anti-LGBTQ+ sentiment. The Boston Red Sox also released a pitcher, Matt Dermody, for previous homophobic social media posts.
But the biggest controversy surrounded the Los Angeles Dodgers, who were pelted with right-wing outrage for honoring the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at their Pride event. Outraged conservatives, ranging from Marco Rubio to Ron “Don’t Say Gay” DeSantis, chided the organization for highlighting the charitable group.
Despite the reactionary backlash, the Dodgers sold more than 49,000 tickets to their Pride Night, and led the league in attendance yet again.
As far as Bass is concerned, it’s important to note his “boycott Target” post wasn’t the first time he found himself in hot water this season. He also made headlines when he publicly shamed a flight attendant for asking his wife to pick up popcorn their young daughter threw on the floor.
If Bass wants another job, perhaps he should stop sh*tposting. By the way, he’s now purportedly advertising his services as a private pitching coach.
He has so much knowledge to dispense, beginning with how to totally wreck a once promising pro baseball career!