Torii Hunter: It would be "difficult and uncomfortable" to play with gay teammate

toriihunter560-flickr.jpg
Photo: Keith Allison, Flickr.
Hunter's comments are already stirring up negative feedback.
This past year has been a coming out party for gay-friendly professional athletes.

In Minnesota, Vikings punter Chris Kluwe became the NFL's most aggressive straight ally, and a spokesman for the campaign to a defeat a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. In our October cover story on Kluwe, "Game Changer," many speculated his position could signify a turning point, and pave the way for the first openly gay professional athlete in a major American sport.

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Outsports.com is characterizing 2012 as "The Rise of the Straight Ally," citing dozens of steps forward in the sports universe throughout the year, including boxer Orlando Cruz and former Pittsburgh Pirates owner Kevin McClatchy coming out as gay.

But of course not every pro athlete is itching for the first gay player to make history. Here's what former Twins outfielder Torii Hunter told the L.A. Times:

But former Angels outfielder Torii Hunter, among baseball's most thoughtful and intelligent players, isn't kidding when he says an "out" teammate could divide a team.

"For me, as a Christian ... I will be uncomfortable because in all my teachings and all my learning, biblically, it's not right," he says. "It will be difficult and uncomfortable."

Hunter's comments aren't quite as controversial as those of Tim Hardaway -- who in 2007 bluntly told a reporter, "I hate gay people" -- but they've unsurprisingly stirred up negative feedback.

Kluwe already commented on Twitter this morning:




As the L.A. Times points out, others have taken to criticizing Hunter as well.

Meanwhile, around 11:20 a.m. today, Hunter responded on his Twitter account, accusing the reporter of taking his statements out of context:





UPDATE: 12:00 p.m.

In an email to City Pages, L.A. Times reporter Kevin Baxter says he stands by the reporting, and has Hunter's comments recorded.

[HT: NBCSports]


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28 comments
senatortombstone
senatortombstone

Don't know why it would be a big deal. Most of us work alongside openly gay people in white collar jobs.  Even though I share Torii's religious views, the presence of gays doesn't have any impact on me one way or the other. Live and let live, and let God sort it out later. Good thing for Torii that he is black, as that will blunt any backlash he receives for these comments.  Notice how much nicer Kluwe is to Torii, than he was to Andy Parrish?

Chad Nordling
Chad Nordling

All i gotta say is respect freedom of speech and fuck off with diggin deep on this.. It is What it Is.. He aint our Govenor or some shit....Do has a good heart.. Probably fucked up on this one ... JUST CHILL. DO YOU

webcelt
webcelt

Enlighten us Torii. Just what does the bible say about gay athletes? Thou shalt not hit while homo?

RandyFrehse
RandyFrehse

@citypages if this is an accurate quote I'm glad he doesn't represent Minnesota anymore.

Pinko Thinker
Pinko Thinker

Torii with 2 i's at the end of his name doesn't wanna play with the gays. You'd think a boy named Sue might have some empathy for those who have been pre-judged so harshly.

OrangeAppeal
OrangeAppeal

I will give Torii the benefit of the doubt until more is uncovered from this. As a general rule of thumb: be wary of any quotes employing the use of awkward ellipses (...). In this case, it is obvious the quote was crafted in a way that would get the most knee-jerk reaction from people. The ellipses indicates there was something said between "For me, as a Christian ..." and "I will be uncomfortable.." Notice, the sentence, if read as one, isn't even grammatically correct. This is obviously "taken out of context," and there very well could be a phrase in there somewhere where he is explaining a rhetorical context or talking about something completely off-topic; we just don't know without the full word-for-word interview. I'm not saying that this validates anything he said, but let's not jump to any conclusions until we hear from Torii, who has so far said exactly what the quote represents: two quotes were mashed into one in order to get a rise out of the public. 

kStafki
kStafki

@Lwelle11 @citypages May his fan mailbox be flooded with gay porn from now until eternity. Amen.

Eric Shawn Smith
Eric Shawn Smith

Ok Chris Kluwe we get it. You LOVE the gays. EVERYONE knows you LOVE the gays. Come out of the closet already you little bunghole queen.

gauuan
gauuan

@LtlRedX @citypages Too bad Torri

Amy Anderson
Amy Anderson

it might lead to sleeping with animals, @nicholas

Patrick Murphy
Patrick Murphy

Torii's said some dumnbass stuff about afro-latino ballplayers in the past, so this fits the bill in terms of how I view this idiot.

Melissa Summers
Melissa Summers

Torii's probably already played with gay teammates. What he's saying is that he'd be uncomfortable playing with OUT gay teammates.

LynnieLou16
LynnieLou16

@citypages Then he can just quit playing and be a shut in where he never has to deal with gay people. #Idiot

timdski
timdski

He likely already has. RT @citypages Torii Hunter: It would be "difficult and uncomfortable" to play w/ gay teammate -- http://t.co/yfCeoIoC

DianeRollie
DianeRollie

@FoodStoned @citypages A lot to teammates found it "difficult and uncomfortable" to play besides him and his massive ego.

David Lloyd
David Lloyd

It's sad that so many intelligent people (Matt Birk) can be so ignorant.

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

@senatortombstone Well dummy Andy Parrish is a political operative who has built his career on hating gay people and Torii is an athlete that says stupid things on occasion.  Only a racist idiot settles on race as the big difference between those two men.

jack_sprat
jack_sprat

@kStafki No offense, but best make it lesbian porn. Gay male porn is boring by comparison, either to actual gay sex or to Gonzo porn. Or, make it single-camera, homemade stuff. Show your best side.

jack_sprat
jack_sprat

@Eric Shawn Smith Punters, the Rockettes of the NFL. LOL No need for a halftime show, when Miss Kluwe is on stage, strutting her stuff.

LiberalMunky
LiberalMunky

@gauuan @citypages Exactly. So disappointed

FoodStoned
FoodStoned

@DianeRollie Oh snap! Very true I'm sure!

senatortombstone
senatortombstone

@MicheleBachmann @senatortombstone Well, I am most certainly not an idiot (FYI: an idiot is an individual with an IQ of 30 or so - mine is higher than that), and "racist" is just an ad hominem attack that leftists use when they have no cogent arguments available to them to defend their positions, which is almost always the case. In any event, Torii Hunter is just one individual with an opinion. Personally, I disagree with it, and do not think that working along gays is any deal at all. Maybe he is worried that a gay teammate will check him out, in the locker room? In the end, though, a black who makes these sorts of comments will receive a less hostile backlash than a white - even from the pro-gay Citypages.

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

@senatortombstone  lol racist idiots like you are why the Republicans are a shrinking bunch of stupid white bigots.  If you are so smart than make a new point beyond repeating your point a second time.  

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