Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

MLB Notes: Minor-League Player for Brewers Says He's Gay

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

MLB Notes: Minor-League Player for Brewers Says He's Gay

Article excerpt

Player on Brewers farm team is pioneer by saying he's gay

It had been a long day and night for David Denson, in so many ways.

His team had been swept in a doubleheader in the low-level Pioneer League, he didn't have much luck hitting and he'd made a throwing error, too.

But it wasn't a total loss.

As Denson, 20, headed to the Helena (Mont.) Brewers' clubhouse at Melaleuca Field late Saturday in Idaho Falls, Idaho, a middle-aged fan of the opposing Idaho Falls Chukars approached and extended his hand.

"I'm proud of you," the man said.

"Thank you," Denson said.

Hours earlier, the Milwaukee Brewers' minor-league player had become the first openly gay active player on a team affiliated with Major League Baseball.

The news broke in the middle of the second game, after he reached out to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell told his team about Denson's story after its 4-2 win Saturday night over Philadelphia at Miller Park.

"It's a very courageous move on his part to be the first one, the first active player to make this announcement," Milwaukee star outfielder Ryan Braun said Sunday. "Hopefully, everybody is at a point where we can just be supportive, not just understanding, but accepting and supportive of him and his situation."

In June, pitcher Sean Conroy of the Sonoma Stompers of the independent Pacific Association revealed he is gay. The Pacific Association is not affiliated with MLB. Denson's coming out follows similar disclosures of late across sports: Michael Sam (NFL draftee); Jason Collins (NBA); Derrick Gordon and Edward Sarafin (NCAA basketball, football); and Dale Scott (major league umpire).

Denson, a first baseman-outfielder, said Sunday that he didn't want to do interviews for a few days.

"It's a lot to take in right now," Denson told the Idaho Falls Post-Register late Saturday night. "I'm a ballplayer first. That's what I'm focusing on."

Maddon socks it to 'em * Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon recently acknowledged that he's growing a beard because every other coach of a Chicago team that's won a title has had some form of facial hair. …

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