Only 7.7 percent of black players comprised major league rosters on opening day this season.
That 7.7 percent figure is a historic low for the game ….. and is alarming the baseball community. That is a big decline from 1975 when 27 percent of MLB rosters were made up of African Americans.
While Hollywood celebrated the premiere of "42'' Tuesday night, the story of Jackie Robinson breaking baseball's color barrier in 1947, four teams opened the season without a single African-American player on the opening-day roster - the St. Louis Cardinals, San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners and Texas Rangers, according to USA Today. The Giants, who have won two of the last three World Series championships, did not have a single African-American player in their major-league camp.
There are 18 teams who have two or fewer African-American players, with the Philadelphia Phillies and New York Yankees accounting for nearly 17% of the African-American population in baseball.
"I never thought I'd see anything like this,'' Hall of Fame second baseman Joe Morgan told USA. "But I've seen it coming. There, for a long time, there were a lot of African-American players to look up to and emulate, but there's not enough big stars now to dissuade them from basketball and football.''
There's no such problem among foreign ballplayers who comprise 28% of the rosters.
It also has been reported that the number of African-American fans in the stands is reportedly under 10%.