Robinson’s daughter: Black players ‘in minority’
Jackie Robinson’s daughter thinks black baseball players are more reluctant to speak publicly about racial issues than their NFL and NBA colleagues because they constitute a lower percentage of rosters.
She spoke at Citi Field on Sunday to mark Jackie Robinson Day, the 71st anniversary of her father breaking Major League Baseball’s color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers. While more than 200 NFL players protested racial inequality last season by kneeling or sitting during “The Star-Spangled Banner,” Oakland Athletics catcher Bruce Maxwell was the only baseball player to take a knee.
“I don’t think they have much choice,” Sharon Robinson said. “They are in the minority and where in football and basketball you have a group and therefor you can take a group action. So players if they speak out individually, they could be the only African-American player on their team and it could be a difficult spot for them to be in.”
The percentage of black players from the United States and Canada on opening-day active rosters rose to 8.4 percent, up from 7.7 last year and its highest level since at least 2012.