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Torii Hunter: Gay teammate would be ‘difficult and uncomfortable’

Society has progressed when it comes to accepting people for who they are regardless of sexual preference, but sports locker rooms are still a place that have a ways to go.

Boxer Orlando Cruz recently revealed that he is gay, but there has yet to be an NFL, MLB, or NBA player who has come out while he was playing. Houston Texans running back Arian Foster feels people are more accepting these days and doesn’t think it will be much longer before a football player comes out. Athletes who were considering making such a bold move might think again after reading Torii Hunter’s comments.

Hunter is a four-time All-Star and has played in the majors since 1997. He was considered a clubhouse leader with the Minnesota Twins and Los Angeles Angels, and he told the Los Angeles Times that having a gay teammate would be “difficult and uncomfortable.”

“For me, as a Christian … I will be uncomfortable because in all my teachings and all my learning, biblically, it’s not right,” Hunter told the Times. “It will be difficult and uncomfortable.”

Kevin Baxter, who wrote a lengthy piece for the Times on gays in sports, described Hunter as saying that a gay teammate could divide a team.

It’s a disappointing view from someone who seems to be so great at uniting his teammates. One would think that players would accept a teammate no matter what if the player helped them win games. Perhaps Hunter would change his mind if he learned that one of his past teammates was gay, or if a prominent player came out.

Even though many NFL players have recently said they would not have a problem with a gay teammate, the comments of Hunter and someone like Falcons receiver Roddy White tells us there would still be plenty of skepticism.

UPDATE: Hunter says he was misquoted by the writer.

H/T Eye on Baseball
Photo credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE

Torii Hunter rips Angels for willingness to spend for Josh Hamilton and not him

Torii-Hunter-AngelsThe Los Angeles Angels made yet another enormous offseason splash on Thursday by reportedly signing Josh Hamilton to a five-year, $125 million deal. Last winter, the Angels locked down the best hitter on the free agent market by bringing Albert Pujols aboard. They did the same this year by aggressively pursuing Hamilton and giving him the fifth year that many teams were hesitant to offer.

While Angels fans salivate at the thought of the middle of their lineup being anchored by Pujols, Hamilton and Mike Trout, at least one person was miffed by the signing. Check out the tweet Torii Hunter sent out when the news was announced on Thursday afternoon:

Despite the fact that he was still extremely productive in 2012 (.313 average, 16 homers and 92 RBI), L.A. and owner Arte Moreno decided not to bring their All-Star rightfielder back. If his tweet is any indication, Hunter was told the Angels couldn’t afford to re-sign him. He instead signed a two-year, $26 million deal with the Detroit Tigers.

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Torii Hunter asks astronaut in space about using the restroom: ‘Does it float?’ (Video)

Torii Hunter got the chance to interview Angels fan and NASA astronaut Joe Acaba, who is currently serving a four-month mission in the International Space Station, on Friday via satellite at Angels Stadium. Hunter took the opportunity to ask the hard-hitting questions: “Can you see Mark Trumbo’s home runs from space?” “Have you seen ET? Have you seen any alien life forms?” “Can you see the Big A?”

But there was one question Hunter asked that topped them all: “It sounds immature, but I see you floating, and there’s pretty much no gravity, so when you have to use the restroom, where does it go? Does it float?”

Let’s be honest, we’ve all wondered the same at least at some point of our lives. And it wasn’t even out of line. Acaba prefaced his answer with a “that’s a great question.”

As Acaba went through astronauts’ differing methods of excretion for No. 1’s and No. 2’s, Hunter, of course, began snickering like an 8th grader during a sex-ed lecture (or Anderson Cooper at the mention of a pussy willow). So, just wait until you see Hunter’s befuddled reaction when he learned that astronauts filter their pee-pee into drinking water.

Here’s video of the exchange. Good stuff starts at the 0:33 mark:

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Torii Hunter rips Angels teammates and coaches for not trying

Do the 2012 Angels look a lot like the 2011 Red Sox or what? Like Boston did with Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez prior to last season, Los Angeles went out and signed two enormous free agents this past offseason in Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson. Unfortunately, they are also off to a terrible start like the one the Red Sox experienced last season. The Angels are 6-12 to begin the year and Pujols is in one of the worst slumps of his career. According to Torii Hunter, neither the players nor the coaches are putting enough effort into winning.

“You have to dig deep,” Hunter said after Wednesday night’s loss to the Rays, according to the L.A. Times. “We can’t get down in the first two innings and say, ‘Here we go again.’ We have to fight a little harder. I don’t think we believe we’re trying that hard. We’re just going through the motions. We have to do what we’re capable of doing. That’s everybody; not just the players.”

Many who have heard or read Hunter’s comments interpret that as a shot at Mike Scioscia. Hunter and Vernon Wells led off the second inning with back-to-back singles, and Scioscia opted to let Maicer Izturis swing away rather than bunt and move both men into scoring position with one out. The Angels were able to load the bases after that but could not push any runs across. Hunter alluded to that inning after the game when asked if early execution could have changed the outcome.

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Torii Hunter says police responded to alarm at his house and pulled out guns

Torii Hunter returned home from the Freeway Series finale against the Dodgers in Los Angeles Wednesday and had a bit of an episode. The Angels outfielder says his home security alarm went off and the police showed up. That’s when matters got so uncomfortable he ended up tweeting about the incident. Below is his description of what took place:

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Torii Hunter says the Twins were psyched out against the Yankees in the playoffs

For the past decade or so, the Yankees have owned the Twins in the postseason. Since the Yankees are always one of the best teams in the American League, that is nothing for Minnesota to be ashamed of. New York has owned a lot of teams, mostly because of how talented their roster is year in and year out. That may not be the only reason they have been able beat the Twins in four series since 2003, however. Former Minnesota center fielder Torii Hunter says the Twins have been intimidated by the Bronx Bombers, which may help explain the results.

“Some guys were nervous, all nervous,” Hunter said of his former teammates according to Eye on Baseball. “There were a lot of guys mentally down — like, ooh, we drew the Yankees.’ Just play the game. Once it gets in your head, you’re done.”

As evidence, Hunter told a story about a game during the 2004 ALDS when the Twins were trailing by a run with a runner on third and one out. Torii says one of Minnesota’s right-handed batters was asked to pinch hit against Mariano Rivera and refused.

“You need a righty hitter against Rivera with his cutter,” Hunter said, noting that Jason Kubel — a left-handed hitter — had to bat instead. “Kubel wasn’t afraid, but he’s a lefty hitter.”

Another former Twin, Michael Cuddyer, called Hunter’s comments “pretty accurate.” The Yankees are dangerous and Rivera has arguably the most devastating pitch in MLB history, but being legitimately afraid of the competition at that level is embarrassing. If I were a Twins fan, Hunter’s revelation would annoy me beyond belief.

UPDATE: Current Twins have denied Hunter’s assertion.

Photo credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE

Yankees Fan Offers Cash Tip to Torii Hunter for Helping with Fallen Glasses

Oh Yankees fans, so generous (or pompous), depending on how you view it:

This seems to be some sort of odd trend developing between Yankees fans and Torii Hunter. Remember what happened in June? That was in Anaheim, this was in The Bronx. Someone explain to me what’s going on here.

Thanks to Hot Clicks for the video