Baseball after Integration

The integration of baseball had important implications outside civil rights as well. Notably, the slow addition of African-Americans to major league rosters quietly hurt the Negro Leagues until the ultimate collapse of the Negro National League in 1948 and later the Negro American League in 1963.robinson-framed-sliding

With more and more teams signing African-American players, the Negro Leagues had a much smaller pool of athletes to choose from and increased competition in selecting prospects. What’s more, the most promising rookies were poached young, thereby leaving the Negro League teams with older, less exciting stars. This, in turn, made Negro League games less desirable and correspondingly attendance rates slowly declined as integration took hold in the major leagues.

It should be noted that while the end of an institution born of segregation was positive, the demise of the Negro Leagues did mean that fewer African-Americans had the opportunity to pursue a living playing baseball.