Now this is evidence of social progress on many levels including:
- MLB's delegation included several African-Americans such as Dave Winfield (formerly with the Twins and Yankees) and Dusty Baker (former Cubs manager)
- This tour has the potential to create a pipeline for talent for MLB but more importantly it creates an incentive system for Africa's young men to avoid becoming "child soldiers" in the various civil wars on the continent -- assuming MLB's owners dedicate funding to create a network of youth baseball /semi-professional leagues.
- The development of a "baseball league infrastructure" on the African continent would be an ideal "foreign aid" project yielding much better results that we have seen produced by the donor community -- United Nations, World Bank, etc. -- for at least the past 50 years.
- This goodwill tour highlights the fact that the historic segregation in baseball -- which resulted in the creation of the "Negro Baseball Leagues" -- is dead and gone which we should all celebrate in a free society especially during Black History Month in the USA.
For a fuller understanding of how racism affected the history of American baseball please visit the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum website at:
Through the inspiration of Horace M. Peterson III (1945-1992), founder of the Black Archives of Mid-America, a group of local historians, business leaders, and former baseball players came together to create the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in the early 1990s.
Baseball in Beautiful,