May 21, 2002

‘I’m not gay,’Mets’ Piazza says: Piazza’s sexual orientation became an issue Monday when the New York Post suggested Valentine’s remarks about gays in an upcoming magazine article could be a prelude to one of his players saying he is homosexual. The newspaper said that, "There is a persistent rumor around town that one Mets star who spends a lot of time with pretty models in clubs is actually gay and has started to think about declaring his sexual orientation." Looks like the rumor was accurate about everything but the gay part!

posted by srboisvert to baseball at 10:22 PM - 17 comments

I was just about to post the New York Post version of that story. If Piazza wants to really convince fans of his heterosexuality, he should pull a Wade Boggs and get a couple of paternity cases going in different road cities.

posted by rcade at 09:33 AM on May 22

Wait- Wade Boggs is gay?!

posted by hincandenza at 11:52 AM on May 22

I think at this point, I'm going to have to take Piazza's word for it, until he's outed. Off the top of my head, I recall rumors that Troy Aikman, Kordell Stewart, Roberto Alomar (which I guess would make his engagement to Mary Pierce a 'beard', but who ever heard of a gay tennis player?). From looking around the web, apparently Brady Anderson is a very popular target of these rumors. See, it's fine for Bobby V to say that he thinks a gay player might be accepted in MLB. What's irresponsible is that the gossip columnist assumed that this meant a Met was about to be outed. That presupposes that Bobby Valentine prompted the reporter to ask this question or somehow worked that into the conversation. That sounds pretty unbelievable to me. Anyway, I love speculating about the secret homosexual lives of baseball players, but perhaps this is just a personal quirk.

posted by pastepotpete at 12:28 PM on May 22

From looking around the web, apparently Brady Anderson is a very popular target of these rumors. No surprise- it's because Brady Anderson is a pretty boy. I call this the "Tom Cruise" effect (or Brad Pitt effect, if you prefer). Some people are projecting their own desires onto these celebrities and passing it off as rumor or fact- they want Tom to be gay, or Brad to be gay. But mostly I think it's either it's so they can co-opt a big-name celebrity as a "respectable, mainstream" idol in the gay community, or simply to fuel their masturbatory fantasies by imagining that- all other reasons not withstanding- Brad Pitt being gay would mean they have a chance. I think if Anna Kournikova were publicly gay, there'd be rumors on the net that she was secretly straight. And anyway, there is the stereotype in society at large that if a guy is well-groomed and attractive, he must be gay. Or at least, those are my theories 'bout that. I suppose I should leave the armchair psychology to the armchair psychologists... Also, you'll notice players like Randy Johnson seem to be immune from these rumors- I mean, even with that name, no gay rumors! Then again, with his fastball, would you want to be the player that outed Randy?

posted by hincandenza at 01:54 PM on May 22

Okay, maybe he isn't, but that's not going to keep me from yelling about it when he's playing the against the Red Sox.

posted by Samsonov14 at 03:15 PM on May 22

If Anna Kournikova were publicly gay, I'd watch. And more on topic, it doesn't matter if a player is gay except for jerks like Samsonov who would yell things. Of course, I'd yell things too, but I'm a Met fan so it's allowed when I do it. Samsonov is just being a asshole. And frankly, this is why the Post columnist had no business printing that piece. Sure Piazza is a celebrity and he'd been nearly outed before, but it's his business and if he is gay and he chooses to keep it from the public for his endorsement money, for his personal comfort or any of a thousand reasons, than a journalist has no cause to infringe on that.

posted by 86 at 03:55 PM on May 22

Former Maple Leaf Wendel Clark was thought to be gay, according to some scallywags in the press and around the watercooler. This is how it goes... He started dating a woman a number of years ago. "He's gay, and he's just covering it up. I know he was dating [a famous ice dancer], so it's obvious that this is fake." He got engaged. "He's gay, and it's just another attempt to cover it up. You'll see, they'll break up later." He got married. "He's gay, and she's just playing along for money. It's not real. They'll get a divorce eventually, or they'll remain married just for show." He had a child with this woman. "He's gay, and, uh...he's gay." It doesn't matter what someone does, people will think what they want to think. Even if Piazza were to make a web cast of him banging some hot supermodel chick, there would still be people saying that he's gay.

posted by grum@work at 05:55 PM on May 22

Who the hell thought Wendell Clark was gay and where did they bury what was left of the body? (Not that there's anything wrong with that: I just can't imagine Wendy taking the accusation in stride)

posted by yerfatma at 06:05 PM on May 22

didn't Andrew Sullivan (maybe it was another reporter) say he was dating a baseball player that played for one of the New York teams , I think that's one of the reasons why there's a focus on this part of the league

posted by mick at 09:49 PM on May 22

It wasn't Andrew Sullivan -- it was some New York based magazine reporter or editor. He wrote a piece at the front of the magazine encouraging on the player to come out.

posted by rcade at 07:56 AM on May 23

86, did you just call me an asshole? That's it. We're gonna have some sort of internet nerd fight.

posted by Samsonov14 at 08:10 AM on May 23

didn't Andrew Sullivan (maybe it was another reporter) say he was dating a baseball player that played for one of the New York teams , I think that's one of the reasons why there's a focus on this part of the league you're referring to the article last year from the editor of Out Magazine.

posted by jerseygirl at 09:24 AM on May 23

That editor is quoted in another followup story on ESPN. The sports media loves this story. Personally, I think the first pro athlete to publicly come out is going to gain more than he loses. The media coverage will be huge.

posted by rcade at 11:43 AM on May 23

OK...this story pisses me off in many different ways. So what if he's gay? Sure it will bring new meaning when I call a player a "sissy" or for him to run to his momma. But what really pissed me off was that from 9AM to 5PM every talk radio, sports show, or radio broadcast was discussing this! Damn it...there is the World Cup to talk about. Or the fact that Cincinnati is in first place since, oh about 10 years. Dammit, lets move on.

posted by plemeljr at 11:54 AM on May 23

Move on? Sounds like gay talk to me.

posted by Samsonov14 at 12:03 PM on May 23

Thanks for the corrections guys, and yeah! let's talk about the Reds (Kearns! Dunn! Rijo!).

posted by mick at 12:37 PM on May 23

OK, talking about the Reds is cool. I'll root for the reds as long as Griffey is hurt. As soon as he comes back, I hope they go on an extended losing streak :) I loved that poll that he whined about where fans selected him as the one who should sit... classic! It's nice to see different teams leading divisions. Well, except for in the AL East.

posted by Bernreuther at 01:57 AM on May 24

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