MLB and MLBPA Champion for Baseball and Softball’s Olympic Comeback in 2028
The MLB is eagerly looking forward to baseball’s grand reentry into the Olympic scene.
In a heartwarming gesture of unity, the MLB, alongside the MLB Players’ Association, penned a heartfelt letter in July, rooting for baseball and softball to shine again at the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics. This news was shared with enthusiasm by Evan Drellich from The Athletic.
While the excitement builds, there’s still anticipation about whether MLB players will get the green light to participate in the Games scheduled for July 14-30, 2028.
Taking a trip down memory lane, baseball made its Olympic debut in 1992 and was joined by softball in 1996. However, the two sports took a hiatus after the 2012 Summer Olympics. They made a brief but memorable appearance in Tokyo 2020, but, as of now, they won’t be featured in the 2024 Paris Olympics.
In the upcoming week, the International Olympic Committee has a significant decision to make. They’ll be reviewing the inclusion of baseball, softball, and a few other exciting sports for the 2028 event.
The Los Angeles team has proposed some fresh additions for 2028, including both men’s and women’s flag football, cricket, lacrosse, and squash. With a voting session lined up from October 14-16, there’s already a wave of support for these fresh inclusions.
IOC President Thomas Bach shared a positive sentiment, stating, “The proposed sports resonate deeply with the American sports spirit. It’s a golden opportunity to spotlight America’s favorite sports and introduce international ones to the US.”
Earlier in February 2022, the IOC rolled out an initial program featuring 28 sports. Among these, skateboarding, sport climbing, and surfing—just like baseball and softball—were special additions for the Tokyo 2020 event.
A notable point from the past: During the Tokyo Olympics, which had been pushed to July 2021 due to pandemic concerns, MLB maintained its stance of not allowing teams to send players from their main rosters.
Historically, even when the Olympics welcomed professional players in 2000, the MLB had reservations. Players were restricted from representing in the 2000 Australia, 2004 Greece, and 2008 Beijing Olympics. This led to baseball’s temporary sidelining in the Olympics post-2005.
However, with MLB’s renewed support, there’s hope in the air. It might just be a hint that they’re rethinking their approach, promising a brighter Olympic future for baseball and its fans.