BY BLACK RADIO NETWORK
PHOENIX - More Latinos took to the field as the National League defeated the American League 5-1 in last night's Major League All-Star Game in Phoenix.
According to data from Major League Baseball, Latinos now account for about 28 percent of all players in the league – up from just 13 percent in 1990, though down from a peak of just under 30 percent in 2006.
Over that period, the proportion of white players in the league has steadily decreased from 70 percent to just over 60 percent.
Black players numbers have sharply declined over the past few years.
Since 1990, the percentage of black players (excluding black Hispanics) has been cut roughly in half over the past two decades to just under 10 percent.
These numbers appear to be somewhat in tandem with trends in the overall US population -- according to the Census Bureau, the Hispanic population has jumped from 35.3 million in 2000 to 50.5 million in 2010, representing 16 percent of the overall population.
Chicago White Sox manager, Ozzie Guillen said last year: "American people are going to need a visa to play this game because we're going to take over."
The percentage of Latino players in the minor leagues are even higher.
However, Dr. Richard Lapchick, Director of The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, believes the Hispanic in Major League Baseball might have peaked already.
“It’s possible [that Hispanic numbers will rise], but I would anticipate that if it does increase, it would be in small increments,” he told media, citing that the growing anti-immigration movement may put a dent in Latino numbers on the diamond.
Still, Latinos dominate baseball now.
Of the 35 players listed on the National league roster, six were Hispanics (US pr foreign-born), including New York Mets outfielder Carlos Beltran.
The American League is even more Latino.
Of the 35 players listed on the AL roster, 15 are Hispanics (US or foreign-born), including Jose Bautista of the Toronto Blue Jays.
Hispanics accounted for seven of the nine AL starters (excluding the pitcher).