The Texas Rangers of Major League Baseball have continued to be the only team in the league to not hold a Pride night, a game with a gay pride theme, or any other promotion of the type.
In fact, the team hasn’t held a celebration of this nature since 2003, according to Breitbart. A number of “LGBTQ+ groups” were apparently invited to the stadium that year by the team, although there were reportedly objections and no official marketing for the event. Anything resembling such a party wasn’t held again after that.
Media outlets appear to routinely check in with the Rangers organization each season, as seen by the Dallas Morning News’ reprinting of a 2021 piece on the subject. In reality, the article from 2021 repeats statements made to the newspaper in 2020 by Rangers COO Neil Leibman.
Leibman stated, “With regard to Pride Night, we contacted the Resource Center and asked what can we do internally. “We embraced some of their suggestions right away to make our hiring procedures more inclusive. That, in my opinion, conveys more significance than merely responding, “Well, we had a Pride Night.
BREAKING: Professional baseball team decides to focus on baseball instead of promoting new imperial religion. Currently boasts second best record in the league. https://t.co/MKXKrPkLBW
— Tyler Carditis (@TyCardon) June 5, 2023
The report also mentioned Rafael McDonnell’s efforts to persuade the Texas ball club to throw a celebratory night as he serves as a liaison between the LGBTQ Resource Center and professional sports clubs. In Dallas, McDonnell planned an in-depth discussion with the MLB’s representative for inclusion, which paved the way for a meeting in October 2019 with the Texas Rangers. According to reports, the activist showed two Texas Rangers employees how other teams were promoting LGBT pride in ballparks and with merchandise, but the initiatives still seem to have failed.
Even when the club changed its hiring procedures, McDonnell expressed his dissatisfaction and remarked, “I think you can do both.”
In addition, Outsports stated in August 2022 that McDonnell was upset that the Texas Rangers did not and still do not “publicly acknowledge” their efforts despite the team being a “Platinum Corporate Sponsor” for the “Gay Softball World Series” in Dallas that year.
A connection was also made by the Dallas Morning Observer between the team’s lack of World Series victories and their lack of Pride nights in 2022. “No awards. No pride,” the publication stated. “The front office will stubbornly maintain its reputation as the last homophobic holdout” following “[another] lousy, losing year on the field.”
The Rangers have managed to finish as the second-best team overall for the 2023 season at the time of this publishing despite this strong association and not breaking their “holdout.”
The Chicago Cubs hosted the first-ever Pride game in the MLB in 2001.