On Friday’s “First Take” on ESPN2, co-host Stephen A. Smith offered his thoughts on what he declared to be a lack of diversity in Major League Baseball at the manager position. As of now, there are currently zero African-Americans managing and the only non-white manager is Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez.
According to Smith, the lack of diversity in the league and lack of care for African-Americans “appears to be exactly what these teams want.”
“It’s one thing to sit up there and say it’s a problem. It’s another thing entirely when you have a leaguer not the Commissioner’s office, but a league by and large that appears to have the thought process that says, ‘We have no problem with the way that it is. It’s our game. We want to make sure it stays our game and this is a way to ensure it stays our game. Because as long as we are in control and we’re the ones making the decisions, it doesn’t matter what you do as a player, because we can always get rid of you.'”
He continued, saying “Major League Baseball, unlike any other sport, appears to be literally like they have the mentality, ‘This is how we like it to be. We want to protect America’s National Pastime. If we don’t have an African-American audience, so what? If we don’t have but so much of a Latino audience, so what? The Latino audience isn’t going anywhere because they love to play baseball because, considering the nations they come from and how impoverished it may be, they’re always gonna be interested in the sport because it’s a money-maker for them so we ain’t worried about them; we don’t care about the African-American audience. And as a result, coming from Dartmouth and Stanford and Harvard and all of these other places with our sabermetrics, our analytics; we can continue to ensure that the imagery of this sport appears to be exactly what we want it to be.’ That’s what seems to be going on.”
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