When the Chicago Cubs traded for Daniel Murphy, who has spoken publicly about his opposition to the gay “lifestyle” based on his Christian beliefs, they did it just five days ahead of the team’s annual “Out At Wrigley” game, designed to welcome the LGBTQ community to Wrigley Field.

That didn’t sit well with a lot of gay fans.

According to Bill Gubrud, organizer of Out At Wrigley, the news of Murphy’s acquisition dramatically increased interest in the LGBTQ event, held Sunday, Aug. 26, at the Cubs’ game against the Cincinnati Reds. Gubrud said in the last few days he fielded calls from many people, including out-of-town visitors, who specifically wanted to attend the game with the community to demonstrate solidarity against Murphy’s stated beliefs.

Gubrud told Outsports that “Out at Wrigley had more energy than its had in years. It is for sure because of Murphy being on the Cubs.” The Cubs announcer mentioned Out At Wrigley during the game.

He also said various Cubs fans booed Murphy every time he stood at the plate. That didn’t seem to have much effect on the player, as he batted 2-for-4 en route to a 9-0 win over the Reds. The Cubs, already with the National League’s best record, have won all five games since Murphy first took the field with them last Thursday. During that span he’s batted .391.

“I will always root for the Cubs,” Gubrud said, “but I can’t for him.”

Murphy is a devout Christian who has said he disagrees “100%” with the gay “lifestyle.” When given an opportunity to comfort LGBTQ Cubs fans last week, he mocked their concern, drawing more criticism.

Cubs owners Tom and Laura Ricketts showed up at the LGBTQ section during the game and answered people’s questions about the Murphy acquisition, a noble gesture to the community. Laura is an out lesbian.

Chances are really good that the Cubs and Murphy will be headed to the MLB playoffs. The Cubs are currently 5.5 games ahead of the Colorado Rockies for a wild-card spot, and they sit atop the NL.

For more Chicago Cubs news and notes, visit Bleed Cubbie Blue.

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