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HBD and Sports: Baseball

1350 words

Racial differences in sports also prove HBD. The differences are extremely clear to the naked eye, but there are many physiological differences between races that lead to disparities of one being over-represented over another race. I will touch on the three main races (Europeans, Asians and Africans), what they excel in and what they are below average in. Sports, as does academic achievement, prove HBD right. Sports prove innate athletic differences, whereas academic achievement proves innate differences in the brain, as well as intelligence. This is on average of course.

The word ‘sport’ is defined as an athletic activity requiring skill or physical ability, often of competitive nature. The sports I will touch on are baseball, basketball, soccer, football, weightlifting, bodybuilding, chess, gaming and hockey.

Baseball is predominantly white (MLB’s 2015 Racial/Gender Report Card), at 58.8 percent white (down from 60.9 in 2014), 8.3 percent black (up from 8.2 percent in 2014), 29.3 percent ‘Latino’ (up from 28.4 percent in 2014), and 1.2 percent Asian (down from 2 percent in 2014). Baseball is actually one of the only sports in America to be close enough to the ethnic mix of the country. According to the SABR (Society for American Baseball Research), the highest rate for black players in the MLB was in 1981 at 18.7 percent.

Before getting in to why the disparity is that large, I need to touch on ‘Latinos’ in baseball.

According to MLB.com, in 2014, 224 out of 853  players (750 active 25-man roster players and 103 disabled or restricted Major League players) were foreign-born, accounting for 26.3 percent of the players that year. Highest is the Dominican Republic with 83 players, followed by Venezuela with 59 players, Cuba with 19, Puerto Rico with 11, Mexico with 9, Colombia with 4, Panama with 4 and Nicaragua with 3. That makes 192 ‘Latino’ baseball players.

This article talks about how ‘black Latinos’ don’t get treated as black, but as ‘Latino’, when they are racially black (I will show some notable examples below). People like to think that it’s its own separate racial category when that’s not true at all.

Using 2014’s numbers, 520 players were white, 72 were black, 243 were ‘Latinos’, and 18 were Asians. We know that all ‘Latinos’ aren’t black, so using 2014’s numbers by country I will try to estimate the number of black ‘Latino’ players to try to get a real look at the racial breakdown in the MLB.

For brevity, I will just add each country up as what the majority mix of that particular country is. So, adding to the 72 black players I will add 83 from D.R., Cuba with 19, I’ll split P.R. with 5. Venezuela has a mix of blacks, whites and mulattoes, so I will just say 25 percent are black. That’s 15. Adding those up you get 194 black players. Keep in mind, a conservative estimate. So that makes the MLB about 23 percent black (this is only for those from foreign-born countries, I may make a comprehensive list one day if I feel up to it about this).

(I will just group mestizos as white for brevity to only have 3 categories.) So with that being said, 641 white players, 194 black players, and 18 Asian players. So with my guesstimate, baseball is 75 percent white, 23 percent black and 2 percent Asian in 2014.

Why the huge disparity? Simple. Baseball, at its core, is about reaction time. To quote Rushton and Jensen from their magnum opus Thirty Years of Research on Race Differences in Cognitive Ability (pg 244):

Reaction time is one of the simplest culture-free cognitive measures. Most reaction time tasks are so easy that 9- to 12-year-old children can perform them in less than 1 s. But even on these very simple tests, children with higher IQ scores perform faster than do children with lower scores, perhaps because reaction time measures the neurophysiological efficiency of the brain’s capacity to process information accurately—the same ability measured by intelligence tests (Deary, 2000; Jensen, 1998b). Children are not trained to perform well on reaction time tasks (as they are on certain paper-and-pencil tests), so the advantage of those with higher IQ scores on these tasks cannot arise from practice, familiarity, education, or training.

And from pg 245:

The same pattern of average scores on these and other reaction time tasks (i.e., East Asians faster than Whites faster than Blacks) is found within the United States. Jensen (1993) and Jensen and Whang (1994) examined the time taken by over 400 schoolchildren ages 9 to 12 years old in California to retrieve overlearned addition, subtraction, or multiplication of single digit numbers (from 1 to 9) from long-term memory. All of the children had perfect scores on paper-andpencil tests of this knowledge, which was then reassessed using the Math Verification Test. The response times significantly correlated (negatively) with Raven Matrices scores, whereas movement times have a near-zero correlation. The average reaction times for the three racial groups differ significantly (see Figure 2). They cannot be explained by the groups’ differences in motivation because the East Asian children averaged a shorter response time but a longer movement time than did the Black children.

Those with higher IQs average faster times on the simple RT, choice RT and odd-man-out RT. They follow Rushton’s Rule of Three, in which blacks will be at the bottom, whites in the middle and Asians at the top.

In this articleMind Games: What Makes a Great Baseball Player Great, they say that studies done by Columbia University on Babe Ruth while he was playing showed that he could react to visual and sound cues better than the normal population, as well as having better hand-eye coordination than 98.8 percent of the population. A great proportion of MLB players have 20/20 vision or better. Within higher-skilled players, even then there are huge differences in reaction time (IQ differences). Hitters also have to predict where the ball will be, all within a 4/10ths of a second. This infographic explains it well. So you need an extremely high reaction time to hit a fastball coming at you at 95 miles per hour. All of this proves that, on average, baseball players have high IQs because of a lot of the things associated with baseball, also correlate highly with IQ.

Personality also is a factor. According to the previously linked article, with the example of Darryl Strawberry and Billy Beane, Strawberry handled the pressure well, while Beane folded under pressure. Seems this has to do with extroversion and introversion. Strawberry says that self-confidence and mental toughness come in to play because they fail 66 percent of the time they come up to hit.

Athletic ability is also important. The top two record holders for stolen bases in the MLB are blacks. Has to do with fast twitch muscle fibers (muscle fibers that exert force faster, but tire out more quickly than slow twitch). So you can see how natural fast twitch muscle fibers help blacks on the field, as well as the base pads, in baseball.

To touch on a previous point, even in the upper end of hitters (the elite ones), there are still marked differences in reaction time (IQ). That makes sense, seeing as I alluded to before that it takes 4/10ths of a second for a 95 MPH fastball to reach home plate.

Why the low rate for Asians? Well, natural athletic ability for one. The second reason is myopia. Those with myopia do have a higher IQ on average (as the correlation is .25), but those that are nearsighted are often late in their reactions to higher speed pitches.  For something anecdotal, I’ve noticed that most Asians are pitchers, either starters of relievers. This article talks about the critical vision skills that pitchers need, and all though Asians are only 2 percent of the MLB, their high visio-spatial ability, along with high reaction times, they are able to succeed as good pitchers in the MLB.

Outfielders are generally fast and quick. Blacks round out a good amount of outfielders, whereas whites round out catcher, as well as a majority of the infield, due to a lot of line-drive hits coming at them, which the player needs high reaction times to be able to catch/field the ball.

Sports prove HBD, just like academic/monetary achievement. Intelligence, as well as physical differences, are pretty much innate. They show in all facets of life. Even though they are obvious to most, no one ever speaks out on it.

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