Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker said he is “ashamed of the game” after hearing that there are no American-born black players competing in the World Series.
Although MLB reported in April that 38 percent of players “came from a diverse background,” there are no U.S.-born black players in the World Series for the first time since 1950, according to USA Today.
Baker was disheartened to hear this.
“Nah, don’t tell me that. That’s terrible for the state of the game. Wow! Terrible,” he told USA Today. “Quote me. I am ashamed of the game.”
Baker said he hopes the situation will resolve itself in the coming years.
“There is help on the way. You can tell by the number of African-American No. 1 draft choices. The academies are producing players. So hopefully in the near future we won’t have to talk about this anymore or even be in this situation.’’
Despite once being America’s favorite sport, baseball is now largely overshadowed by sports such as football.
According to Statista, only 5 percent of African-Americans preferred baseball over other sports in 2019. By comparison, 37 percent of African-Americans chose football as their favorite sport, and 29 percent preferred basketball.
In July, the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Mookie Betts wore a T-shirt calling for black Americans to return to baseball.
I saw Mookie Betts come out without his jersey. I asked if I could take a photo of his shirt.
“We need more Black people at the stadium.” pic.twitter.com/QSCcYDgSTy
— Steve Saldivar (@stevesaldivar) July 19, 2022
When asked by USA Today if he hoped to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame, Baker said he does not expect that honor.
“That’s not my motivation for any of this,’’ Baker said. “Most of my life I haven’t gotten what I deserve, so I don’t expect the Hall of Fame. I don’t expect nothing.”
“If [I] make the Hall of Fame, fine. If I don’t, that’s fine too,” he said. “I know I’ve done my best. And I know more than anybody how America is. I really do. I’m not bitter about it. I just know how it is, man.’’
Baker said he plans to continue managing the Astros next season.
“The Lord has chosen me to do this even when I didn’t want to do it,” Baker said. “There were times I didn’t want any part of this game. I know how this game is, man. But this game has also taken care of me, my family, my friends, everybody.’’
Baker, 73, would be the oldest manager to win a World Series if his Astros manage to do so against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Houston dropped Game 1 on Friday after leading 5-0 heading into the fourth inning.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.