Friday, March 30, 2012

MLB Players and College

    There is a lot of criticism towards NCAA basketball and the rule that players only have to attend one year of college before taking off for the NBA. However the situation in baseball is way worse. Of all the players and managers in the MLB in 2011 only 26 had a college degree (Turbow, Wall Street Journal). Thats right less than one player per team  in the MLB has a college degree. This could be the case for many reasons. The main reason being the MLB minor league system. Major league teams draft players out of high school and send then to their mine league affiliates to develop as a player. It is the equivalent to a player developing in college in sports like basketball and football.

   This makes certain players in the MLB anomalies, much like Jeremy Lin and Tim Tebow in their respective sports. One that particularly comes to mind is Curtis Granderson who plays for the New York Yankees. Now I hate the Yankees much like a lot of other baseball fans, but when Granderson used to play for the Tigers he was one of my favorite players. Curtis Granderson graduated from University of Illinois- Chicago with a double major in business administration and business marketing. When Curtis used to play fro the Tigers it did not take him long to become to the face of the franchise. He was a well spoken, young, athlete who was a great role model for young Tigers fans everywhere. He was also always promoting community service projects he was taking part in which gave kids another reason to look up to him. Another aspect that makes Granderson an anomaly is the fact that he is African American which there seems to be less and less of in the MLB, but that's a discussion for another time.
      It is becoming harder and harder to find role models like Curtis in the MLB. usually the star players have no college experience and have a tendency to make a poor decisions. There is a lot that would need to be done to fix this disappointing trend in baseball. It would have to start with more emphasis put on college baseball. As of now college baseball is not something many fans chose to watch. But, if it could be marketed as a more attractive option more young player may chose this route out of high school instead of going right into the minors. This may make a small change, however it is unlikely any change will happen. 

1 comment:

  1. I agree that the current system regarding college graduation and the MLB is completely flawed. The fact that less than 1 player per team has graduated college is absolutely ridiculous. Now I am not sure the MLB can do much about this situation, but they can definitely try. In my opinion the MLB should get rid of Single A, as they already have Double and Triple A in their minor league system. Instead of Single A, the MLB should work with the NCAA to make college baseball a more marketable and watched game. If the MLB was to eliminate Single A baseball, hundreds if not thousands of players would be forced to play college ball instead of getting drafted straight out of high school. This would not be enough though. The NCAA needs to dig deep and figure out a way to market college baseball. I understand it will never be as popular as Football and Basketball, but theres no reason not to try.