La Velle Neal's Sunday Insider: Plenty of work to do on baseball diversity

  • Article by: LA VELLE E. NEAL III , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 4, 2012 - 5:58 PM

Affirmative action is making ground in youth programs, but black players are still scarce at the major league level.

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BallFourAug. 4, 12 6:40 PM

When it comes to diversity, the Twins don't lag in African-American players, as they once did, but I can't recall the last Latin star - pitcher or not - who rose through their system. They barely have Latin starters. Rivas is the last position player to come up through their system and play regularly.

tradecuddyerAug. 4, 1210:34 PM

Will people ever stop talking about ones skin color? We've read this article 1000 times before.

BallFourAug. 4, 1210:46 PM

tradecuddyer: Will people ever stop talking about ones skin color? We've read this article 1000 times before. BALLFOUR: Because MLB thinks treading water on the topic is progress.

tomfeldAug. 5, 12 8:28 AM

Has Magor League Baseball done something over the years to discourage Black kids from playing beaseball? I think not. If young Black kids are not playing baseball, it is because THEY do not want to play baseball, not because there are no opportunities..The fact that the number of Black players in MLB are dwindling is not the fault of anyone except those who choose not to play. I wonder if the NBA is making any special efforts to increase the number of White players in their league.. They are not, nor should they. Young Black kids have the very same opportunity to get to the Magor leagues as White kids. The fact that they are choosing not to pursue that goal is no one's fault but their own. Move on to some real problems like addressing the cost to take a family to a baseball game.

bake0325Aug. 5, 1210:30 AM

tomfeld: The fact is that the opportunities aren't there, and for a kid who wants to play baseball seriously, its pretty difficult without at least 8 other kids PLUS other teams to play against. If there was no demand for these programs they wouldn't have 200,000 participants.

mandichAug. 5, 1211:31 AM

Baseball's participants mirror society more than any sport I can think of. All cultures play and are represented in percentages very close to the make up of the population. I don't see a problem.

norcaltwinAug. 5, 12 2:15 PM

At the risk of being politically incorrect, I don't see why diversity = black skin color. There are high percentages of latin american players on MLB rosters, a good percentage of Japanese, some chinese. I think these ratios reflect where the "raw material" of new players come from. The Twins even have some players from Australia! This should count for some diversity as well.

gunflint55Aug. 5, 12 2:46 PM

The only reason that MLB looks for diversity is so that the next Willie Mays or Bob Gibson won't end up playing another sport. It's all about the green.

romermusicAug. 6, 12 3:15 PM

Reusse wrote a pointed column on this a few years ago. It's nation-wide sociology problem more than self-created MLB problem.

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