MLB Creating Committee to Study Decline in African-American Players

Mike Axisa, Bleacher Report, April 10, 2013

Major League Baseball is creating a committee to study why fewer African-Americans are playing baseball, reports Tyler Kepner of The New York Times. {snip}

“I don’t want to miss any opportunity here,” [commissioner Bud Selig] said in a telephone interview from his office in Milwaukee. “We want to find out if we’re not doing well, why not, and what we need to do better. We’ll meet as many times as we need to to come to meaningful decisions.”

{snip}

“I really think our history is so brilliant when it comes to African-Americans,” Selig said. “You think about the late 1940s, the 1950s—wow. And you look at that and you say to yourself, ‘Why did it not continue, and what could we do to make sure it does continue?’ ”

According to Kepner, only 8.5 percent of players on this year’s opening-day 25-man rosters were African-American. The reigning world champion Giants are one of several clubs with zero black players. Recent research by Mark Armour from the Society of American Baseball Research says the highest percentage of African-American players in baseball was 19 percent in 1986.

{snip}

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