Jackie Robinson, who would have been one-hundred years old this February, stepped out of the Dodgers’ dugout and took his position at first base on April 15, 1947. He was the first African-American to play major-league baseball since the sport became restricted to whites in the 1880s. More than half of the 26,623 spectators at Ebbets Field that day were black. (An unintended consequence: the beginning of the end of the Negro Leagues.) Three decades later, 19% of MLB players were black.
African-Americans constitute 14% of the U.S. population; today, they make up just 8% of the MLB rosters. (Only 3% of pitchers.) By contrast, 74% of NBA players are black; in the NFL it’s 60%, even soccer’s 10% exceeds MLB.Continue reading “Jackie Robinson’s Progeny”