Essay On Baseball

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During the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, Major League Baseball, much like the majority of other American institutions, was racially segregated. A color barrier was implemented during baseball’s infancy in order to separate people of different race to cater to the white American players. The color barrier was an unofficial “rule” that hindered those with dark skin from playing baseball for Major League teams. The color barrier was enforced by preventing any teams with a colored player from competing at the professional level. Many team owners, umpires, and players justified their opposition to allowing blacks to play by declaring that only whites could uphold the "gentlemanly character" of professional baseball. Others argued that excluding blacks would prevent future racial resentment between the ethnicities, as players of different races would be competing for the same job opportunities.
As a faithful follower and player of American Baseball, this topic was of extreme interest to me. The origins and history of a lifestyle that I have dedicated the overwhelming majority of my life to has always caught my attention. Baseball, being America’s national sport, is a crucial illustration to understand when discussing the overall societal circumstances at that time. One of baseball’s most important tasks was integrating the sport and allowing people of every ethnicity to have a chance to play the sport at an equal playing field. Although we now know that the efforts to desegregate baseball were ultimately a success, to what extent were the efforts a direct success during that time period? Did the unification of different ethnicities in America’s national sport have an effect on the amount of time desegregat...

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...were in any way associated with a Negro League team whatsoever.
At its height the Negro Baseball League teams competed in World Series and the elite had the chance to compete in All-Star games. The East-West All-Star game, hosted by Negro Leagues, soon became a tradition at Chicago's Comiskey Park. The game was played annually, and soon contributed greatly to the ever-growing national popularity of Negro League baseball during the 1930’s. Gus Greenlee conceived the idea of the Negro League All-Star Game in 1933 and the game quickly became black baseball's most popular attraction. The game showed off the Negro Leagues best talent from each region and regularly packed Cominsky Park. In contrast to the Major League Baseball All-Star Game, the Negro league version made it a tradition to play at the same venue every year, generating camaraderie and a sense of pride.

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