Bean spreads MLB’s inclusion message after Orlando tragedy

WASHINGTON (AP) — Billy Bean, a gay former player and Major League Baseball’s first ambassador of inclusion, has expressed hope after spending the last two days mourning the mass shooting in Orlando.

The Nationals hosted their 12th annual Night OUT event Tuesday night, and Bean was at the park for a nationally televised game between the Chicago Cubs and Washington. Bean was scheduled to visit with members of the Nationals even before the attack at an Orlando nightclub, which left 49 dead.

Bean says “everyone’s heart in baseball was broken on Sunday morning.” He pointed out the gay pride flag flying beneath an American flag beyond the outfield at Nationals Park and called it “a new image” and “a powerful one for the LGBT community.”

Bean retired in 1995 after six seasons in the majors and came out in 1999. His primary duties with MLB are to spread a message of inclusion.

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