Seven decades after Jackie Robinson, African Americans a small major league fraternity

Curtis Granderson spans generations.

Most African-American Major League Baseball players older than the Toronto Blue Jays outfielder are retired, and many are coaching. And younger cohorts include players like Jays prospect Anthony Alford, who are just starting their baseball careers.

Between them stands the likes of the 37-year-old Granderson, who treasures his role as an elder in a small, tight-knit professional network of African-American players in the major leagues.

According to MLB, 8.4 per cent of players on opening day rosters identified as African-American, African-Canadian or Black, the highest proportion since 2012. But that figure comprises just 63 individuals spread among 30 teams.

And those players themselves form a fraternity keenly aware of their uniqueness in the broader MLB…

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