Dickey: How baseball is taking steps to confront its complex racial future

From Jack Dickey at Sports Illustrated on May 9, 2017:

Baseball’s problems with race are not confined to the stands behind the visitors’ dugout at Fenway Park. No one knows that better than the man who was subjected to racist taunts in Boston on May 1, Orioles outfielder Adam Jones.

On an MLB Network special last month commemorating 70 years since Jackie Robinson broke the color line, Jones, 31, said, “What I see in the media, front office, scouts, [public relations], community relations—they’re white. When you look into the stands—they’re white! You’re uncomfortable now that I’ve said something? I’m uncomfortable every single damn day.”

Baseball is a diverse game, but it is not now, as Jones notes, a black one. According to the Society for American Baseball Research, 36.3% of 2016’s major leaguers were something other than white Americans, but just 6.7% were African-American. The league hit that modern-day low point twice previously, in 2013 and ’14. Before that, the last time so few major leaguers were black was in 1957, a mere decade after Robinson’s debut, when the Tigers and Red Sox had yet to integrate. There are only two black managers, one GM and no black majority owners.

Read the full article here: https://www.si.com/mlb/2017/05/09/adam-jones-corey-ray-tony-reagins-mlb-race-relations

Originally published: May 9, 2017. Last Updated: May 9, 2017.