Well, it looks like the MLB and the MLBPA is in a showdown right now, as the contract between the two parties is set to expire next week on December 1st. This wouldn’t be the first work stoppage in MLB history but this can definitely have a huge impact based on the crossroad the MLB is at right now. The 2016 World Series’ ratings was as high as they ever been in the last decade. With so many people watching to see which long drought would come to an end. It also captured, I’m sure some young kids which baseball has been desperately trying to reach out too.
If you watched throughout the playoffs almost every commercial break had MLB’s Play Ball initiative running to influence boys and girls to join baseball and/or softball. It has been well documented that a lot of kids are moving away from baseball because of the pace of play and the excitement of the game. With a great World Series filled with so many young players on both sides, spiked a lot kids’ interest.
For example, I listen to ESPN 1000 on a daily basis and right after the Cubs won there was a young man who said he had been watching with his son and they were now baseball fans and wanted the hosts to make cases for them on whether they should be a White Sox fan or a Cubs fan. What made it even better was that it was a African American man with his young son. The reason why I state this is because African American participation in baseball is down because most of those kids are only introduced to football and basketball as sports to play.
King Tom Ricketts and his other Kings across the MLB should take this opportunity to come to an agreement because the MLB can take off from here and the next wave of players would have been influenced by the past World Series and spike youthful participation.