Date of Award
Master of Science
Recreation and Sport Management
Sylvia T. Trendafilova
Robin L. Hardin, Joy T. DeSensi
Latin-Americans have become major contributors in Major League Baseball, but face many challenges acculturating to living and playing in the United States. This research examined the acculturative support provided to Latin-American players by teams in the South Atlantic League of Minor League Baseball and whether or not people involved think that support was effective. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with front-office members and Latin-American former players, and transcriptions were analyzed for emerging themes using QDA Miner content analysis software. Three main themes emerged from the interviews: the language barrier, interaction between Latin-American and Anglo-American teammates, and the youth of Latin-American prospects. These themes were identified both as presenting the biggest challenges to the acculturation of players and also areas where assistance should be focused in order to be of the most benefit. All interview subjects believed the support currently provided for Latin-American players was effective, but that there are still areas where improvements can be made. Future research should explore acculturation from current players‟ perspectives, instead of taking a front-office approach, and would not only provide information on the player‟s opinions of current acculturative practices, but also their attitudes and beliefs about acculturation and whether they view it as a positive or negative experience.
Osmer, Lauren Melanie, "“Learning the Hard Way”: An Examination of Acculturative Support for Latin-American Baseball Players in the South Atlantic League. " Master's Thesis, University of Tennessee, 2011.