On Thursday, December 8th, 2022, the United States Congress officially passed the Respect for Marriage Act, which requires all 50 states to recognize same sex marriages.
House, 33, came out as gay while also announcing his engagement to longtime boyfriend Ryan Neitzel. The post is a beautiful, emotional one and is certainly worth the read. House goes on to say that he is blessed to have the kind of love that challenges him to be a better person daily and to live life authentically.
House cited the passing of the Respect for Marriage Act as the primary reason for his announcement.
First off, let me just say congratulations to House and Neitzel on their engagement. Second, props to House for being comfortable enough in his own skin to publicly make such an announcement.
House is only the third former MLB player ever to come out, joining former Dodgers and A's outfielder Glenn Burke and former Tigers, Dodgers and Padres outfielder Billy Bean.
However, there's a longer list of minor league players who have come out as well, with nearly all of them doing so after their retirement. This includes former Rockies draft pick Matt Barker, Pirates draft pick John Dillinger, Cardinals minor leaguers Tyler Dunnington and Jason Burch, as well as former Brewers minor leaguer David Denson, who came out while being an active player.
Bean, MLB's Senior Vice President and Special Assistant to the Commissioner, told Outsports that "today is a great day for the league", when he heard of the House news.
House, a 2008 draft pick by the then-Cleveland Indians, made his big league debut in 2014, making 19 appearances (18 starts) and going 5-3 with a 3.35 ERA.
In each of the next three seasons, House's career was ravaged by injury and he never quite regained his footing at the game's highest level. His Blue Jays career consisted of two relief appearances in which he gave up one run, walked one batter and struck out one as well.