With the baseball postseason heating up and the NHL under fire for capitulating to homophobia, the last player MLB would want anyone thinking about right now is Anthony Bass.
Back in June, Bass shared an Instagram post from evangelist Ryan Miller urging followers to boycott Target because the chain was selling Pride merchandise that Miller termed “evil” and “demonic.”
After Bass held an awkward press conference where he defiantly said “I stand by my personal beliefs” and got booed by Blue Jays fans the next time he entered a game, the Jays decided to wash their hands of the situation and designated him for assignment on Pride Night.
Releasing Bass ended up being one of the best Pride giveaways of the month.
Now Bass is again displaying his deft grasp of proper timing by choosing the middle of the MLB playoffs to issue his first public comments since being DFA’d.
In an exchange with the Canadian Press, Bass “disagreed with [Blue Jays] General Manager Ross Atkins’ assertion that the move was a ‘baseball decision.’”
Considering that his release coincided with Blue Jays Pride, there might be some merit to his accusation. But looking at Bass’ 4.95 ERA in 2023, it was probably more like a “your baseball skills aren’t nearly enough to put up with this” decision.
Bass also disclosed that he had consulted the Players Association to find out if he had grounds to file a grievance. He was told that because the Jays were still paying the rest of his salary for the year, there was not.
After Bass’ comments hit the news cycle, Jays Journal writer and editor Eric Treuden posted on Twitter that a source “close to the situation” informed him that “a large group of Blue Jays were on the brink of boycotting the game that night because Bass was DFA’d.”
Didn’t think I’d see Anthony Bass’s name in headlines again this year but here we are!— Eric Treuden (@ETreuden) October 11, 2023
I spoke with someone that was close to that situation recently and was told, “a large group of #BlueJays were on the brink of boycotting the game that night because Bass was DFA’d.” Apparently…
If Treuden’s post is accurate, someone deserves a lot of credit for convincing those players to stop that nonsense immediately.
Staging a player walkout on Pride Night because the team released Bass would’ve been an awful moment for the Jays and for baseball. Especially because it would’ve erupted around the same time as some players were criticizing the Dodgers for honoring the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.
Baseball could have had its own NHL-sized problem on its hands and MLB is fortunate that the idea of a player boycott didn’t go any further.
Jays fans were loud and clear about what they thought of Bass and probably wouldn’t have had a problem turning on the whole team if they sided with him — especially on Pride Night.
Back in the present day, Bass declared he wants to pitch somewhere in the big leagues in 2024 and insisted, “I have more in the tank.”
Considering that his social media activity almost led to a player insurrection during Pride, that’s what we’re afraid of.