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MLB’s Attempt to Sanitize Its Past: a Thinly Veiled Attempt at Revisionism

MLB officails

Major League Baseball (MLB) is attempting to rewrite its history, a popular trend these days. However, this effort is akin to performative virtue-signaling, as it tries to erase the past instead of confronting it.

MLB is incorporating records from the Negro Leagues into its official records, pretending that those players competed at the same level as major leaguers. This is a flawed attempt at historical revisionism, as it disregards the reality of segregation and the inferior opportunities available to Black players at the time.

The consequences of this revisionism are far-reaching. Josh Gibson, a talented Negro Leagues player, is now being credited with the highest career batting average in MLB history, despite never playing a single game in the majors.

Glove checks

This is a disservice to both Gibson and Ty Cobb, the actual all-time leader in batting average. Cobb’s achievement is being diminished by MLB’s attempt to rewrite history, and Gibson’s legacy is being inflated by artificially placing him in a context he never participated in.

The issues with this approach are numerous. Gibson’s statistics are being taken out of context, ignoring the shorter seasons and fewer games played in the Negro Leagues. His batting average is impressive, but it’s not comparable to Cobb’s achievements over a much longer period. This revisionism opens the door to endless speculation and debates about what could have been if players like Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, and Hank Aaron had been given equal opportunities.

MLB’s attempt at historical revisionism is condescension masquerading as justice. Instead of honestly acknowledging its bigoted past and the injustices faced by players like Josh Gibson, MLB is trying to whitewash its history.

This approach does a disservice to the players and the game itself. True justice would be acknowledging the past, honoring the achievements of players like Gibson in their proper context, and learning from the mistakes of history.

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