Baseball Percentage of Black Players Drops

AP, April 16, 2008

Major League Baseball received its best grade for racial diversity in hiring, even as the percentage of black players dropped again last year.

MLB received its first A- for race yesterday from Richard Lapchick, director of the University of Central Florida’s Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sports. Its grade was B+ in last year’s study.

Among players, though, just 8.2 per cent were black, down from 8.4 per cent in 2006 and the lowest level in at least two decades. The percentage of black pitchers remained at 3 per cent.

“It is ironic that as the role of people of colour dramatically increases regarding who runs the game, African-American players continue to decrease,” Lapchick said.

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Lapchick said 28 per cent of employees at baseball’s central offices were non-white, including 20 per cent among senior executives. Women were 42 per cent of employees, but 26 per cent of the senior executives.

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