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

Jon Jones thinks he can beat Cain Velasquez

Larry Bird jokes about pose of Dominique Wilkins’ statue

Barry Switzer urged Cowboys to draft Murray with great quote

SF Giants file brief in support of gay marriage to Supreme Court

Jay Cutler available to teams in trade

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Brian Hoyer praises Johnny Manziel for checking into rehab

Dockett: I would have signed with Cardinals for less money

Report: Darrelle Revis' decision to come down to Patriots, Jets

Maurice Jones-Drew announces his retirement from NFL

Ndamukong Suh is biggest prize, risk in free agency

Associated Press will have 'robots' writing game stories

Five areas the Eagles must address this offseason

WATCH: Craig Sager emotional in warm welcome back to TNT

Likeliest landing spots for Ndamukong Suh

Tigers pitcher Alfredo Simon drives a chrome Mercedes

WATCH: Ronda Rousey breaks guy's ribs who doubts her ability

Michelle Beadle’s campaign to be cast in ‘Sharknado 3′ pays off

Ten teams who have tightened the belt

Dodgers will have a tough time dumping Andre Ethier

Brian Cashman: Derek Jeter should be final Yankees captain

Tom Brady, Rory McIlroy to play round at Augusta National

No one knows who will win the 2014-15 NBA MVP

Giants TE on plane that slid off runway in New York

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

Jon Jones thinks he can beat Cain Velasquez

Jon Jones has flirted with the idea of moving up to heavyweight, and now he feels pretty comfortable with pursuing that goal. In fact, Jones believes he can beat current heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez. Jones spoke at the “UFC: Welcome to the Show” event in Los Angeles last week and again expressed interest in moving...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
10 hours ago

Larry Bird jokes about pose of Dominique Wilkins’ statue

On Thursday, the Hawks unveiled a statue of the greatest player in the franchise’s history, Dominique Wilkins. Former and current players attended the private ceremony at Philips Arena to honor the Hall of Famer who is at, or near, the top of many Hawks career statistical categories. Among those to congratulate Wilkins was Celtics great...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
10 hours ago

Barry Switzer urged Cowboys to draft Murray with great quote

DeMarco Murray was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in large part thanks to a hearty endorsement from former Cowboys and Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer. Murray, 27, was drafted by the Cowboys in the third round in 2011. 70 players had already been drafted by the time Dallas selected him, so it’s not exactly like there...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
10 hours ago

SF Giants file brief in support of gay marriage to Supreme Court

The San Francisco Giants are one of three professional sports teams in North America that have filed an amicus brief with the United States Supreme Court in support of an argument in favor of same-sex marriage. Without getting into too much detail regarding what an amicus brief is, here’s a description directly from Cornell Law. An amicus curiae brief that brings to the attention...
Via Sportsnaut
9 hours ago

Jay Cutler available to teams in trade

The Chicago Bears are in a difficult position with Jay Cutler and apparently have made it known that the quarterback is available in a trade. NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport reported Thursday that teams know Cutler is available: “Teams certainly know that Jay Cutler is available if they want him for the right price.” –...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
11 hours ago

Brian Hoyer praises Johnny Manziel for checking into rehab

Cleveland Browns’ quarterback Brian Hoyer is on course to become a free agent next week after being the primary starter for the team last year. Even though he and fellow quarterback Johnny Manziel competed for the starting job last summer and Manziel sat mainly on the sideline, there was a respect on Hoyer’s side at least for the young quarterback. Hoyer had this to say to...
Via Sportsnaut
14 hours ago

Dockett: I would have signed with Cardinals for less money

Darnell Dockett signed with the San Francisco 49ers on Thursday after playing 10 seasons for the division rival Arizona Cardinals, and he expressed disappointment with his former team for letting him go. Docket, who signed a two-year, $7.5 million deal, told Jody and MJ on FOX Sports 910 in Phoenix that he was willing to...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
13 hours ago

Report: Darrelle Revis' decision to come down to Patriots, Jets

The decision might be simple for Darrelle Revis if he hits free agency: winning versus money. The cornerback ultimately will choose between the New England Patriots and New York Jets this offseason, ESPN’s Adam Schefter said on Mad Dog Sports Radio with Adam Schein on Thursday. “I believe that it will come down to the Patriots and the Jets,” Schefter. “I think the Jets...
Via NESN.com
14 hours ago

Maurice Jones-Drew announces his retirement from NFL

Maurice Jones-Drew announced his retirement from the NFL on Thursday by posting a message on Twitter saying that “all good things come to an end.” In his note on the matter, Jones-Drew called his 9-year playing career an “amazing” time and said he is looking forward to the next chapter of his life. All good...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
15 hours ago

Ndamukong Suh is biggest prize, risk in free agency

One of the most coveted free agents this offseason is defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh. He's as dominant as any interior defensive tackle that the league has seen over the last decade.  I don't put him quite to the level of JJ Watt for reasons of versatility - Watt can play both outside and inside.  But for pure defensive tackles who constantly disrupt the middle, eating up at least...
Via Football By Football
23 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.