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SBD/April 15, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies
Number Of African-American Players "Mind-Boggling" As MLB Marks Jackie Robinson Day
Published April 15, 2013
PLAYERS WEIGH IN: Rockies CF Eric Young Jr. said, "You flip through a bunch of channels, you'll see LeBron do a commercial or Dwyane Wade. That's what kids relate to, that's what they see. That's what they might flock to. I'm always in the business of trying to branch out and get the game to more eyes, new eyes." Rockies CF Dexter Fowler said that the “lack of quality fields and equipment in the inner cities also is a major reason fewer black kids give baseball a try” (DENVER POST, 4/15). Brewers 2B Rickie Weeks said, "I think with African-Americans at a young age, the glamour sports are basketball and football. Kids look at it as an old-fashioned sport. Playing baseball isn't the hip thing to do" (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 4/13). Former MLBer Eric Davis said of the issue, “The reason there’s a steady decline is the black male’s fault because he’s not around. Baseball is a sport that has to be introduced to you through a male figure.” He added, “Baseball has never had to market its game to kids. That’s why baseball is in the position where it’s having these questions” (CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 4/13).