HuffPo's report on blacks in baseball is bogus

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As much as I bemoan Huffington Post's persistent sideboob coverage, sometime's I wish that's all they did — not just because I'm a sucker for skin, but because so much of what they do is smarmier than a schoolmarm in a Jonas Brothers chastity belt. 

For one, I don't need to Arianna Huffington to tell me I need more sleep. The dark circles under my eyes do that on their own.

And I sure as hell don't need her to give me some Ted Talk jive about the so-called Third Metric. Seriously, am I the only person who double-fists a shot of haterade every time Arianna proclaims that money, power, and prestige aren't the end-all, be-all measure of success. She's the multimillionaire head of the leading liberal media empire in the country, so clearly money, power, and prestige mean something to her or else she'd be living on the public dole like a proper pleb. Fuck her.

Hopefully, you don't buy this shit or any of the other half-baked smarm points that Arianna and her team of PR flaks posing as journalists spout off daily.

Consider today's shocking HuffPo article: Major League Baseball No More Black Than It Was In The 1950s. In it, the author argues that economic barriers prevent African Americans from playing baseball. HuffPo reports:

Jackie Robinson broke Major League baseball's color barrier in 1947, but in the past few years, the percentage of African-American players on the field has dipped to Civil Rights-era numbers. One reason the number of black Major League players has steadily declined since the 1990s may be economic barriers to the sport, along with lack of college scholarships available in baseball, as college tuition costs rise and the racial wealth gap expands.
The report even cites some examples of how the cost to play baseball is significantly higher than the cost to play basketball and, yikes, even football.

For baseball, HuffPo argues that it will cost a child $480.84; that includes a baseball glove ($79.99), a batting glove ($19.99), pants ($10.99), cleats ($29.99), a helmet ($59.99), and a bat ($279.99). For basketball, HuffPo argues, all a child needs is a pair of shoes ($95); to paraphrase Kurtis Blow, apparently you can play basketball without that basketball. (Football is a comparative bargain compared to baseball: cleats, a mouthguard, pads, and gloves — WTF? — come to only $313.97; apparently a helmet isn't necessary, nor is a cup or those silly Bible verse stickers.)

Obviously, the person who put together this article has never played any of these sports. If they had, they'd know that in baseball, teams share bats and helmets — so you can knock off $279.99 and $59.99 right there.

Of course, if they also knew anything about youth baseball, they'd know that the typical bat costs, well, $250 less than the figure they cite (the price tag on a wooden Louisville Slugger hovers around $25, while you can pick up a youth aluminum bat for $20.) You can also pick up a glove for less than $25, too. So right there, the article's central argument — it's too fucking expensive for black kids to play baseball — is eliminated.

Now, I'll give you the argument that the lack of college scholarships may prevent some African Americans youngsters from playing baseball, but it sure as hell ain't the cost of the frikkin equipment. All you really need is a single ball, a bat, and a glove — and you can get all of those things for less than the cost of a $95 pair of fucking shoes.

Chris Haire is the author of the comic novel, The Many Crimes of Wyatt Duvall, Archmotherfucker, a despicable tale about a dastardly man committing dastardly deeds. Oh, and dryer lint smoking. Lots of dryer lint smoking. It's currently available at Amazon.com.

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