The Importance of Pride Month in MLB

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month is currently celebrated each year in the month of June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan. Today, celebrations include pride parades, picnics, parties, workshops, symposia and concerts, and LGBT Pride Month events attract millions of participants around the world. A couple of years ago, Gallup found that 4.1% of Americans overall, and 7.3% of millennials, identify as LGBT, although the demographer who published that data suspects that, after accounting for those respondents who are unwilling to disclose details regarding their sexuality, the overall figure is probably closer to 10%. Britni de la Cretaz, who's written a number of fascinating stories on the intersection of sport, gender, and sexuality, wrote an article last month exploring queer women in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, a facet ignored by A League of Their Own. In another sense, baseball generally, and MLB specifically, has a lot of work to do when it comes to LGBT inclusion. To their credit, MLB has taken some steps to protect LGBT players. In honor of Pride Month, 23 teams are holding a Pride Night at their respective ballparks in 2018. The Yankees have evidently not yet held a Pride Night because they "Sh[y] away from promotions with an ethnic or cultural flavor." David Kilmnick, head of the LGBT Network, told the New York Times that although he pitched the Yankees on both a Pride Night and LGBT sensitivity training for employees, the team rejected those proposals.