MLBPAA announces “Heart and Hustle” award, given mostly to Americans and white guys


Today the MLB Players Alumni Assocation announced its annual “Heart and Hustle Award” given to one player from each team “who demonstrate a passion for the game of baseball and best embody the values, spirit, and tradition of the game.”

You can click here to see all of the recipients and read their press release.

One thing that stood out to me in looking at the list is that of the 30 winners 28 are American born and 22 are white guys.

I’m not trying to portray this as as huge deal so much as something to sigh about because it’s sadly predictable. Baseball is often held up as a diverse, global game and on the field it certainly is, but it’s also a game that holds onto a lot of stereotypes and cliches both positive and negative.

According to the most recent “MLB Racial and Gender Report Card” the overall number of “American” players is 73 percent and the overall number “white” players is 58 percent. Which is why it seems noteworthy that an award based on “heart and hustle” is given to 93 percent “American” players and 73 percent “white” players.