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Thread: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

  1. #16
    Resident optimist OldRightHander's Avatar
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    Re: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

    Baseball and hockey have minor league systems where even decent players spend a fair amount of time before getting up to the big time. Unless you're a big time draft pick with a large signing bonus, it might be a while before you cash in. You're a suburban kid who grew up well off and you don't look at sports as a way out. You play what you enjoy most.

    You're an athletic kid growing up in a poor urban setting and sports presents a way out, but you might gravitate toward a sport that offers more of an immediate payoff.

    I don't think that's the whole reason, but maybe it's one factor.
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  3. #17
    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post
    Here's what I don't get: "Blacks" are ~13% of the U.S. population. What is MLB's target % of blacks in professional baseball?

    If you look at just American-born players in MLB, blacks are almost perfectly proportionately represented. That Hispanic and Asian players from overseas are "taking jobs" from Americans is the source of the ethnicity "problem", if you want to think of this way.

    And if you want to suggest that baseball should look like professional football or basketball, I'd suggest a whole different kind of racism is going on.
    This is where baseball really ties itself up in knots with labels and its terminology. If we're looking at "blacks" then guys like Aroldis Chapman have to be included. If they want to say "no we don't care what race you are, we just want to count black people who were born in the USA" then we get the term African American. My guess is if they include players like Chapman and Livan Hernandez as blacks that they'll find that race is nicely represented. I find it curious that we have to wait for a player to talk before we decide whether he's Hispanic or African American

  4. #18
    Member smith288's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post

    And if you want to suggest that baseball should look like professional football or basketball, I'd suggest a whole different kind of racism is going on.
    This.

  5. #19
    First Time Caller SunDeck's Avatar
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    Re: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

    Quote Originally Posted by Crumbley View Post
    The poor and lower middle class have gotten poorer. Black people are more likely to be lower income. A baseball game takes a lot of infrastructure. 18 kids need gloves, a field, bats, balls, helmets, etc. Basketball is a lot more accessible.
    But doesn't this fly I the face of what's happening in the Dominican Republic? When I was a kid, pickup baseball was on the schedule every day in the summer. We had about ten kids, maybe six gloves, the ball was covered with electrical tape, one or two old wooden bats and bases were rocks. Right field was out and on ground balls, pitchers mound was out.

    My dad used to say he thought the thing killing baseball was that kids were no longer allowed to play unless it was organized. I think he's on to something; last time I was at Delhi Park on a weekday afternoon in the summertime, I saw no kids playing on any of the sand lots. When I was a kid, there were usually 2-3 fields taken every day, from noon till dark.
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  6. #20
    Oy Vey! Red in Chicago's Avatar
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    Re: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

    Quote Originally Posted by SunDeck View Post
    But doesn't this fly I the face of what's happening in the Dominican Republic? When I was a kid, pickup baseball was on the schedule every day in the summer. We had about ten kids, maybe six gloves, the ball was covered with electrical tape, one or two old wooden bats and bases were rocks. Right field was out and on ground balls, pitchers mound was out.

    My dad used to say he thought the thing killing baseball was that kids were no longer allowed to play unless it was organized. I think he's on to something; last time I was at Delhi Park on a weekday afternoon in the summertime, I saw no kids playing on any of the sand lots. When I was a kid, there were usually 2-3 fields taken every day, from noon till dark.
    We played ball every day in my neighborhood. When we were shorthanded, which was quite often, right field was an out.

    If there was just two of us, we would play "strikeout", which was literally one guy throwing and one guy hitting. You painted a strike zone against a building (typically the local school). Obviously, no walks, but each guy got three outs and then we switched rolls.

  7. #21
    Be the ball Roy Tucker's Avatar
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    Re: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

    I know that with a lot of the parks around us, they have signs up saying you can't play on a diamond unless its an organized game or practice. I don't know if they actively chase kids off, but it's a deterrent.

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  8. #22
    Resident optimist OldRightHander's Avatar
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    Re: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

    We would play just with a couple people and had a rule where we basically looked at a hit and came to a consensus what the result would have been had there been fielders out there and you couldn't assume infield hits. You hit a weak grounder, you're out. You hit a hard grounder up the middle you get a single. Line drives were singles, fly balls were outs. You hit the fence (if we had one) you got a double, etc. If you couldn't agree on what the hit was, replay the at bat.

    Or sometimes we would get a bucket of balls and one guy would pitch them all until the batter had hit all of them then we would gather all of the balls and switch places.
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  9. #23
    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: MLB looking into lack of African-American players

    Quote Originally Posted by SunDeck View Post
    n't this fly I the face of what's happening in the Dominican Republic? When I was a kid, pickup baseball was on the schedule every day in the summer. We had about ten kids, maybe six gloves, the ball was covered with electrical tape, one or two old wooden My dad used to say he thought the thing killing baseball was that kids were no longer allowed to play unless it was organized. I think he's on to something; last time I was at Delhi Park on a weekday afternoon in the summertime, I saw no kids playing on any of the sand lots. When I was a kid, there were usually 2-3 fields taken every day, from noon till dark.
    Yep, it's a different world now. Kids generally do more inside activities (video games, more TV channels, tons of movies).. Stuff we didn't have available as kids.

    Also, many parents are terrified for their kids' safety. My neighbor has a 13 year old daughter. He's scared to let her walk alone 1/2 mile to the park in our neighborhood. He figures there's kidnappers (or worse) waiting there to take his daughter. The same dangers existed when we were kids, but the level of fear parents have now is much higher.
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