For years, the Giants have proven that they sincerely care about their community. They demonstrated that in 1994 by launching "Until There's A Cure Day," which made them the first professional sports team to host a game benefiting efforts to fight AIDS. They've deepened their involvement in the Bay Area by endorsing and participating in numerous causes, most notably the Junior Giants youth baseball program.
Now, the Giants are again taking a sensitive step forward by becoming the first pro sports team to support the It Gets Better Project, which attempts to provide hope to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender teenagers in their quests for respect and acceptance. The Giants have created a video that was posted Wednesday on the club website and on itgetsbetter.org, featuring five players and coaches providing encouragement to teens. Pitchers Barry Zito, Matt Cain and Sergio Romo, outfielder Andres Torres and hitting coach Hensley Meulens acknowledge that though life as a teenager often can be a struggle -- particularly for gay teens who might question their identities or receive abuse from peers -- it gets better. As one grows older, life frequently isn't as difficult as it might have seemed earlier. Others who have sent such messages include President Obama and members of the cast of the hit television show "Glee." "It sends a really nice message on behalf of the organization, and the players did a great job," Giants senior vice president of communications Staci Slaughter said Tuesday. "It's an important message for all teens to hear. We're pretty proud to be part of the campaign." The Giants' video features a montage of all five participants, combining to drive home the central theme of "it gets better." Zito declares in one of the segments, "We speak for the entire Giants organization when we say that there's no place in society for hatred or bullying against anyone." Each Giant concludes by asserting, "It gets better." Meulens, who speaks five languages, delivers his message in Japanese, while Torres speaks Spanish.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.