Sociology of sports: baseball

Baseball Baseball evolved from different bat and ball sports of Europe in the 19th century. The Lapta version of baseball played in Russia originated in the 14th century (19c Base Ball, 2013). Baseball has today become a radical component of the heritage of America and is presently a multi-billion dollar industry. Baseball is known as “ America’s Pastime” since the year 1856 and has continued to be one of the most popular sports in America despite the recurrent woes and scandals associated with it (19c Base Ball, 2013).
The sociodemographic description of baseball places the home team’s attraction as a vital consideration. The level of skill, team record, league standing, performance and capability of individual players are some of the factors that govern the attendance of fans at games. Baseball is a professional sport as the birth of the first professional baseball league happened in 1871 (Fact Monster, 2014). Over the passage of time, many large cities in the East America established their own professional teams of baseball.
Baseball is one of the defining elements of the contemporary lifestyle in America. It is the sport that evokes most nostalgia for the Americans. Many Americans start playing baseball from early childhood. Others play softball which is closely related to baseball. It is for the popularity of baseball in America that it is called as the pastime of the American nation. People having average weight and height can easily play baseball which is a contributing factor to its popularity in America.
A range of cultural trends have impacted baseball. Not only is baseball given huge coverage by the sports media all over the world in general and in America in particular, but baseball has also played a role in making cricket respectable in England. Baseball derives its gravity from scoring and record-keeping. It is for the record-keeping of the sport that today, “ More Americans undoubtedly know that Roger Mariss 61 home runs in 1961 broke Babe Ruths record of 60 in 1927 than that President Ronald Reagans 525 electoral-college votes in 1984 broke President Franklin Roosevelts record of 523 in 1936” (Fact Monster, 2014). This makes the experience of watching and playing baseball more interesting because people are interested in seeing records being broken.
Color barrier has prevailed in the recruitment of players for baseball for a long time in the history of America. Jackie Robinson broke this barrier as he represented the Black Americans in baseball (O’Mara, 2014). Minimum age for becoming eligible for recruitment in baseball team is 17 years. “ This minimum age was instituted after the Toronto Blue Jays were derided for signing a 13-year-old Dominican boy, Jimy Kelly, in 1984” (Ruck, n. d.).
As a beginning sociologist, I understand baseball as a social institution in America because people have national and historic affiliations with this sport in addition to the traditional reasons for playing it. Baseball is an inseparable element of the American lifestyle and nationality. In-depth study of the history, records, and principles of baseball generates useful information for a sociologist and helps him/her develop an understanding of the nation’s psychology and interests.
19c Base Ball. (2013). 19c Base Ball. Retrieved from http://www. 19cbaseball. com/.
Fact Monster. (2014). Baseball in America: A History. Retrieved from
http://www. factmonster. com/ipka/A0875086. html.
O’Mara, S. (2014). Baseball and Race in the United States. The Gilder Lehrman Institute of
American History. Retrieved from https://www. gilderlehrman. org/history-by-era/civil-rights-movement/resources/baseball-and-race-united-states.
Ruck, R. (n. d.). Baseball’s Recruitment Abuses. Americas Quarterly. Retrieved from
http://americasquarterly. org/node/2745.