go to MSN.com
Originally written on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 11/13/14

The amount of African-American players on Major League Baseball opening day rosters this season was historically low. Only 7.7% of the players on all 30 MLB rosters are African-American, which is the lowest percentage since the Boston Red Sox became the final team to integrate their roster in 1959. Bud Selig is hoping to change that in the near future. According to USA Today Sports, Selig is expected to announce the creation of a formal task force this week that will aim to reverse the decline in African-American ballplayers across the league. The project will reportedly consist of a 17-member committee that includes owners, executives and coaches. It is expected to include Hall of Famer Frank Robinson and Chicago White Sox vice president Kenny Williams, among others. Hall of Fame second baseman Joe Morgan said he believes the low number of African-American stars in the MLB today has resulted in a lack of role models for young African-American players. “I never thought I’d see anything like this,” Morgan told USA TODAY Sports on Tuesday. “But I’ve seen it coming. There, for a long time, there were a lot of African-American players to look up to and emulate, but there’s not enough big stars now to dissuade them from basketball and football.” In 1995, 19% of the players on Major League rosters were African-American. The number was at its peak of 27% in 1975, so you can see how dramatic the drop has been over the last few decades. Four MLB teams opened their season this year without a single African-American player on their roster and 18 teams have two or fewer African-American players currently on their rosters. However, there have been some small signs that the trend could be reversing. Last year, seven African-American players were selected in the first round of the MLB draft, which is the most since 1992. Reds outfielder Derrick Robinson, who was offered a scholarship to play football at Florida in 2006 but chose baseball instead, said the risks involved with playing football could help increase the number of African-American players in baseball. “You look at those kind of things, and that’s why I talk to guys trying to get them to play baseball,” Robinson said. “Some of them say it’s boring, but hey, I love it. It’s so much better on the body and for longevity. Besides, you look at this game now, and it’s changing. The game’s being revolutionized now with speed and defense. We need all of the great athletes we can get.” When you hear stories like this, you realize how big of an issue concussions and head shots have become in the NFL. From a physical standpoint, it seems to make sense that an MLB career could be longer than an NFL career. Whether or not that increases the amount of African-American players on MLB rosters remains to be seen. Photo credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
3 Comments:
  • Why in the world should the race of a person be on the mind of Bud Selig. If a person is good enough to play in the Major Leagues it shouldn't matter if they are green. Stop trying to be so politically correct Bud. There are much bigger problems in the game. Getting a game that's free of cheaters and drugs would come to mind. Maybe making it so a family could afford to go to more then one or two games a year without taking out a loan. Maybe getting rid of some of the franchise's that have no chance of competing because the talent in the big leagues is so inferior. If more african americans were good enough and more importantly interested in baseball then they would be playing.
  • The issue of the pace of the game is definitely a problem but more fundamental is access. Access as it relates to youngsters in the inner city areas. Baseball needs space so all of the Baseball is played in the burbs where few if any of the "elite" athletes in a particular locality leaving the African American athlete stranded on the outdoor courts and minimal dimension areas of his neighborhood. The RBI program that MLB started some years ago while a noble effort, was a band aid for a broken leg...too little in too few places. Baseball has become sort of a country club sport where the powers that be don't have to go back into the city and their children don't have to be exposed to THAT atmosphere. I've recently attended a few HS Baseball games and have yet to see more that two African American players on any team.
  • The NBA is 77% black and 21% white of which 55% are white americans and 45% from other countries.So what is the NBA doing about this? Over 70% of the NFL players are black. The point is who cares!
    I agree with mbutts41, Bud should be concentrating on real issues and stop his white guilt BS.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

DeMarco Murray: 'I'm not worried about the Cowboys'

Turner has great quote in defense of Bridgewater

Gary Bettman's quote about expansion makes no sense

Beltre sends Richards invoice for three broken bats

Herschel Walker: Vikings should trade Adrian Peterson

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Raiders fielding calls about fourth overall pick

WATCH: UAB football player brings helmet to graduation

Andrew Luck to students: 'I'm only 25, I don't have advice'

Mark Sanchez: Tebow is another arm while Bradford recovers

Report: Former LSU CB Jalen Collins failed multiple drug tests

Six players suspended for White Sox-Royals brawl

WATCH: Demetrious Johnson wins with last-second submission

WATCH: Jerryd Bayless beats Bulls with buzzer-beater

John Legend catches Belichick checking out Chrissy Teigen

Jim Rice to Jim Palmer: 'Quit complaining'

Time Warner-Comcast failed merger hurts Dodgers fans

WATCH: Bucks mascot devours fan

Protestors tried to have Orioles-Red Sox game called off

Greg Hardy abandons his Bentley during flash flood

WATCH: LeBron James hits full-court shot after practice

Peyton Manning announces $3 million gift to Tennessee

WATCH: Leah Still scores TD in Temple spring game

WATCH: Todd Gurley shares video of himself sprinting

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
RUMORS & GOSSIP

DeMarco Murray: 'I'm not worried about the Cowboys'

The Dallas Cowboys made it quite easy for running back DeMarco Murray to seek out other teams last month after they did not offer him the contract he desired. Along came the Philadelphia Eagles with their deep pockets, who signed Murray to a five-year, $40 million contract. This was a price tag that the Cowboys were not willing to pay to keep Murray playing in Dallas. Harboring...
Via Sportsnaut
10 hours ago

Turner has great quote in defense of Bridgewater

Minnesota Vikings’ quarterback Teddy Bridgewater choked during a particular portion of his pro day workout last year. This was something that may have caused him to slip to the 32nd overall pick in last year’s draft. The exact drill where Bridgewater struggled was when he was to throw a pass over raised brooms which were supposed to simulate an oncoming pass rush. Bridgewater’s...
Via Sportsnaut
13 hours ago

Gary Bettman's quote about expansion makes no sense

Expansion continues to be a hot topic in the NHL and Gary Bettman was recently asked about the possibility of a new team joining the Eastern Conference. Based on the current structure of the league (14 teams in the West and 16 in the East), the obvious solution is to place two teams in the West to balance things out. Would Bettman consider adding a team in the East if the right...
Via Puck Drunk Love
17 hours ago

Beltre sends Richards invoice for three broken bats

Garrett Richards displayed his Cy Young contender stuff during a win Friday against the Texas Rangers in just his second start of the season. The 26-year-old went seven strong innings allowing just three hits, three walks, and two runs in the Angels’ 3-2 win. Among his highlights included holding Rangers cleanup hitter Adrian Beltre to...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
11 hours ago

Herschel Walker: Vikings should trade Adrian Peterson

Former Minnesota Vikings running back Herschel Walker is no stranger to blockbuster NFL trades. The two-time Pro Bowler was involved in the biggest trade in modern NFL history when he was sent from the Dallas Cowboys to Minnesota for a bevy of players and picks that helped set up the Cowboys dynasty of the 1990’s. Over 25 years removed from that trade, Walker is speaking up...
Via Sportsnaut
15 hours ago

Report: Raiders fielding calls about fourth overall pick

Depending on how the top-three picks in the upcoming 2015 NFL draft play out, the Oakland Raiders could very well be trade-down candidates. It’s likely that their primary target at this point is USC defensive lineman Leonard Williams, who most experts conclude is the best all-around defensive player in the draft. However, there’s a decent possibility that the Tennessee Titans...
Via Sportsnaut
15 hours ago

WATCH: UAB football player brings helmet to graduation

Earlier, we shared tweets from UAB linebacker Derek Slaughter, who planned to wear his football helmet during the school’s commencement ceremony to protest the dissolution of the program. Now, we have video of Slaughter crossing the stage, and it doesn’t disappoint for those who agree with his stance. Slaughter snubs president Ray Watts on the handshake as he crosses the stage...
Via College Spun
19 hours ago

Andrew Luck to students: 'I'm only 25, I don't have advice'

Indianapolis Colts’ quarterback Andrew Luck was invited to participate in a lecture series at DePaul University. When asked if he had any advice to give the assembled crowd of students, Luck, with his dry sense of humor, stated this (via the Indy Star). As far as advice? I’m only 25. I don’t have any advice. Luck was also asked other questions during his appearance...
Via Sportsnaut
17 hours ago

Mark Sanchez: Tebow is another arm while Bradford recovers

Now that they have signed Tim Tebow to a one-year contract, the Philadelphia Eagles have a very crowded depth chart at the quarterback position. Assuming Tebow isn’t going to play another position, there is no way he, Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez and Matt Barkley all make the 53-man roster. Did Sanchez already hint that Tebow...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
19 hours ago

Report: Former LSU CB Jalen Collins failed multiple drug tests

Less than a week before the draft isn’t exactly the best timing for information like this to come out. According to NFL Media insider Albert Breer, former LSU cornerback Jalen Collins failed multiple drug tests during his college days. There is no information regarding what drug Collins tested positive for, but this latest piece of information will likely drop Collins, who was...
Via Sportsnaut
20 hours ago
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.