Last month, the Toronto Blue Jays cut pitcher Anthony Bass after he said he didn't think an anti-LGBTQ+ social media post he shared last month was hateful, NBC News noted.
The move happened hours before Bass was set to catch a ceremonial first pitch from Toronto LGBTQ+ activist leZlie Lee Kam before the game against Minnesota as the Blue Jays began their fourth annual Pride Weekend celebration.
The athlete apologized before a May 30 game against Milwaukeeone day after sharing a post on Instagram calling for anti-LGBTQIA+ boycotts of Target and Bud Light over support they showed for the LGBTQIA+ community, according to ESPN. According to an MLB press release, Bass (who is now a free agent) shared this post to his Instagram stories, deleted it briefly and then shared it once again before ultimately deleting it permanently.
However, on June 8, Bass said, "I do not [believe it was hateful]," ESPN noted. "That's why I posted it originally. When I look back at it, I can see how people would view it that way and that's why I was apologetic."
Blue Jays General Manager Ross Atkins told the media, "Like anything, there are times when things get momentum and become a distraction in our clubhouse, and that was a variable," per a People Magazine item. Atkins' decision to release Bass came days after he initially said the pitcher would not be disciplined, claiming Bass had been apologetic and "accountable" for his actions.