(chrisTwire Sports)—Major League Baseball, has the lowest percentage of African-American players since the earliest days of the sport’s integration, according to research conducted by USA TODAY Sports.
The African-American percentage in baseball this season has dropped to 8.05%, which is less than half the percentage of 17.25% in 1959 when the Boston Red Sox became the last team to integrate their roster. It’s down from 8.5% last season, and a dramatic decline from the peak of 1975, when 27% of all rosters were African-American. Even as late as 1995, the percentage was 19%.
What does this mean for the fan? A better, cleaner, safer experience for all. Gone are the days where we would watch black players stealing equipment, doing crack on the field and doing drive-byes in the parking lot.
In other Afro-Saxxon sports news:
Oil Can Boyd Admits Crack use and that Blacks Ruin Things:
Dennis “Oil Can” Boyd, who pitched eight of his 10 major league seasons with the Boston Red Sox, ventured into unusually honest territory during a mostly heartfelt, all-encompassing interview with ESPN baseball analyst Buster Olney for Tuesday’s episode of E:60.
Oil Can says he used crack cocaine every day of the 1986 season while with the Red Sox, including one day in Oakland when he smoked in the clubhouse before one of his starts and had the drug tucked in his cap while on the mound.
Boyd told of his start on May 11, 1986, at Oakland when he smoked crack before taking the mound.
“I get to the ballpark, all the ballplayers are on the field, you know, taking batting practice and everythin’. And I walk in the clubhouse and I — I got my pipe with me.
“I can remember going and locking myself up in the bathroom and smoking some dope right there at the ballpark. I was afraid that they knew and that the clubhouse manager had smelled it, he was gonna tell on me. So I gotta get rid of it.
“I had it under the bib of my cap, inside the crease inside of the cap. And when I was warming up in the ballgame — third, fourth inning — it fell off my head.”
Boyd, who was known for his flamboyance and volatility during his big league career, also said he regrets the Negro Leagues were broken up because of the loss of individuality that thrived in the leagues.
“I’m not real thankful to Jackie (Robinson) at all because I’m me, my style of baseball, the way I played it in the major leagues transpired from the Negro Leagues,” said Boyd, whose father played in the Negro Leagues. “So that’s why people found that I was a hot dog or I was flamboyant.
“Now the kids don’t even know the ballplayers anymore, it’s so commercialized. And they wonder where the black ballplayer went. Well, black ballplayers went to jail. In the last 20 years, that’s where they are.”
Boyd’s autobiography “They Call Me Oil Can: Baseball, Drugs, and Life on the Edge” is due out in June.