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Former Giants minor leaguer Solomon Bates comes out publicly as gay

(Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

Solomon Bates, a prospect most recently pitching in the Giants’ organization, came out as gay in an Instagram post Tuesday.

Bates, who pitched for the Double-A Richmond Flying Squirrels and for Giants Orange in the Arizona Complex League, was released earlier this week. The 25-year-old posted a 4.02 ERA in 23 Double-A games this season.

According to Outsports, Bates is the second active minor leaguer to come out. Bates also told Outsports that he came out to his teammates in 2019.

“Being gay in this sport you don’t know what comes at you!” Bates wrote in his Instagram post. “I thank the giants for giving me the opportunity to be myself and go out there and play the game that I love the most.”

Bates added: “I’m still going to open up doors for gay athletes like me. Still will strive to be one of the greatest to do it.”

Bates’ Instagram story, as of Tuesday night, featured swaths of supportive messages.

The Giants drafted Bates out of the University of Southern California in 2018. He has a career 17-6 record and 4.30 ERA in the minors.

“Baseball I’m not done with you,” Bates wrote. “I’m leaving on my terms and my terms only.”

Giants manager Gabe Kapler told The San Francisco Chronicle in San Diego that he has “a ton of respect for Solomon’s willingness to lead.”

“I think it’s great that he’s speaking up,” Kapler told The Chronicle. “I think he’s, in many ways, paving the way for other gay athletes to be willing to come out and be themselves. So good for Solomon.”


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