Multiple Tampa Bay Rays players declined to join their teammates in wearing rainbow logos on their uniforms to celebrate Pride Night during a game over the weekend.
In a Saturday night game against the Chicago White Sox, Rays players Jason Adam, Jalen Beeks, Brooks Raley, Jeffrey Springs, and Ryan Thompson each declined to wear uniforms featuring rainbow logos to show support for the LGBTQ community, CNN reports.
Speaking on behalf of the players who opted out, Adam told the Tampa Bay Times they didn't wear the logos because of their religious beliefs. "A lot of it comes down to faith, to like a faith-based decision," Adam said, adding that "a lot of guys decided that it's just a lifestyle that maybe — not that they look down on anybody or think differently — it's just that maybe we don't want to encourage it if we believe in Jesus."
Most of the Rays players did show support for the LGBTQ community by wearing the logos, according to the Tampa Bay Times. Rays manager Kevin Cash told ESPN that "we want to support our players that choose to wear or choose not to wear to the best of our capabilities."
But at The New York Times, baseball writer Tyler Kepner said that "by allowing the players to opt out of the promotion," the Rays "undercut the message of inclusion they were trying to send."