Things are not going particularly well for Toronto Blue Jays reliever Anthony Bass this season, on or off the diamond.
If his on-field endeavours (-0.1 WAR and 4.50 ERA in 2023) failed to capture your attention, you’ll probably remember Bass as the player who sparked a wild social media firestorm back in April when he called out an United Airlines employee after they refused to clean up popcorn spilled by his young children. Well, Bass was back at it again on Monday, making himself the villain once more with his latest Instagram post.
The 35-year-old reliever shared a “reel” from another account which explained the “biblical reason” those of Christian faith should boycott companies like Target and Bud Light, which have been publicly supporting LGBTQ rights.
“Here’s the reason biblically why I believe Christians have gotta be boycotting Target, Bud Light, and any other corporation that’s pushing the things they’re pushing,” the video shared to Bass’ Instagram story said. “I think a lot of people make this into a political issue, or they say ‘oh what’s the big deal?'”
Both Target and Bud Light have been mired in an intensely polarizing, often political controversy, mostly fuelled by alt-right and conservative U.S. media outlets.
The former has faced plenty of backlash from the far-right community for selling Pride-themed products. Bud Light, meanwhile, has been under siege for its marketing partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
The Blue Jays released a statement to blogTO regarding Bass’ actions, saying, “Individual player sentiments are not representative of the club’s beliefs.” They also reaffirmed their commitment to “providing an inclusive and welcoming experience for all.”
Rogers Centre — the Blue Jays’ home stadium — will be at the forefront of Toronto’s Pride Month festivities in June and will host the organization’s fourth annual Pride Weekend when the Minnesota Twins visit June 9 and 10.