(LifeSiteNews) — The Texas Rangers are the last remaining Major League Baseball team to not host “Pride Night” at the ballpark, though the franchise is not as conservative as some may think it is.
“Apparently, there’s no pride in Texas,” a liberal contributor to Fan Nation, which is owned by Sports Illustrated, said earlier this month.
Once owned by former president George W. Bush from 1988 until 1994, the team has steadfastly resisted pressure from LGBT groups and hostile media outlets to host a Pride game. It did, however, invite gay athletes to its stadium in 2003, a move that prompted massive backlash at the time.
“Our commitment is to make everyone feel welcome and included in Rangers baseball,” the team said in a statement earlier this month. “That means in our ballpark, at every game, and in all we do – for both our fans and our employees. We deliver on that promise across our many programs to have a positive impact across our entire community.”
In 2022, the Rangers were a platinum sponsor of the “Gay Softball World Series” in Dallas. Approximately 900 rainbow-clad players from the tournament attended a game at the team’s Globe Life Field.
“This is another example of how the Rangers strive to make everyone feel welcome and included in all we do,” spokesman John Blake said at the time.
On October 21, 2021 — so-called “Spirit Day” — the Rangers’ social media account tweeted support for “inclusion.” The day was created by a Canadian teenager in 2010 to bring attention to “bullying” of “LGBTQ+ youth.”
— Texas Rangers (@Rangers) October 21, 2021
In 2021, the team released a statement informing The Athletic that members of the Rangers’ front office volunteered at the pro-LGBT Resource Center in Dallas “to help with preparations for their Teen Halloween Party.”
Fox News also reported that Rangers COO Neil Leibman told The Dallas Morning News in 2020 that the Center helped him adopt changes that made the organization “more inclusive in hiring practices.”
Earlier this year, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred reportedly directed teams to not wear rainbow-themed jerseys during any Pride games, which are held at the discretion of team owners. The league’s 29 other teams have all hosted Pride games, with the Chicago Cubs being the first in 2001.
On July 15, the Rangers will host the Pegasus Slowpitch Softball Association, a pro-homosexual organization, for a day game against the Cleveland Guardians. The Rangers currently have a 45-28 record, putting them in first place in the American League West.