A star athlete comes out as gay, and the narrator asks, “Why now?” Greeting that question with a shrug, the revival of “Take Me Out” from Second Stage is a down-the-middle throwback that neither connects squarely with the present nor meaningfully replays the past.
It’s true that Richard Greenberg’s ballgame drama has become only somewhat less speculative a fantasy in the 20 years since its premiere. There are still no openly gay players active in Major League Baseball, nor among the most famous active pros in men’s sports, a time-honored arena for fixations on masculinity, identity, fairness and power.
But there’s little retrospective insight to this production, from director Scott Ellis, which is a straightforward retelling of a story whose provocations were largely reliant on context. And if the play has enduring resonance — as a study of prejudice, or even a romance with America’s pastime — here it’s more an echo than a roar.