Why You Don’t See MLB Players In The Olympics?

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Major League Baseball involves baseball teams that play in the United States. Over the years baseball has had an on-and-off relationship with the Olympic games. In the year 1992, baseball was made an official sport in the Olympics but it was again voted out in 2008 by the International Olympic Committee. It was a joy for baseball fans to see baseball make a comeback in the Olympics in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics games. Fans and supporters around the world had wished to see great MLB names in the 2020 Olympic games but this was not the case as great MLB names missed out. Many people still wondering why this is the case can now get their answers from this piece of writing as it shows why you do not see MLB players in the Olympic games. Let’s learn about ‘Why You Don’t See MLB Players In The Olympics?’.

Why You Dont See MLB Players In The Olympics?

Why You Don’t See MLB Players In The Olympics?

The Olympics is the best time to see the world’s best players in all games come together and compete on the grand stage for different accolades. You will not see the MLB players in these games and this article explains why. There are only three main reasons that lead to MLB players not featuring in the Olympic games. The three main reasons for this scenario include the following, the MLB regular season overlaps with the summer Olympics time, and the MLB governing body always feels that it would be way too expensive to pause the MLB regular season for a couple of weeks and that the MLB will lose money, and they also fear that some of the players might be injured during the Olympic games.

Let us now look at the explained reasons why you will not see your favorite MLB players in the Olympics:

1. The Olympic games take time during the MLB regular season

The MLB regular season takes place from early April to late September, this time overlaps with the time when the summer Olympic games occur this is because the Olympics takes place in two months that is July and August.

This means that if the players were to take part in the Olympics, they would leave the MLB for 3-4 weeks to play in the Olympics something that the baseball teams could not bear as you can not play one month without your star players in a regular MLB season.

2. The MLB fears the risk of losing money

The MLB would lose money if it allowed their players to take part in the Olympics, this is because the Olympics overlaps with the regular MLB season, and allowing players to leave would mean that the league should be suspended for at least one month because many teams will be without their star players. Suspending the league for one month means that MLB will miss out on league revenue and this is what they fear, the risk of losing money.

A scenario like this once happened when Japan and South Korea once suspended their leagues and allowed their players to take part in the Olympics, and they lost out on some league revenue during this time.

3. The MLB fears the risk of its players getting injured in the Olympic games

In all the sports of the world, there is no guarantee that a player will play all the games without getting injured, and that is the case with the Olympic games, that there is no guarantee that players will return to their best conditions without injuries.

The MLB fears the risk of losing players to injury on a non-team event because they are playing in the Olympics. It will lead to a great disadvantage for a team whose star player gets injured in the Olympics, the worst part being that if a player is injured in the Olympics, he might miss the entire remaining part of the season and this is what the MLB governing board fears a lot because their teams might be affected a great deal.

4. The MLB players are more committed to the World Baseball Classic tournament than the Olympics

Because the MLB is not always on good terms with the Olympics, the MLB came up with its league known as the WBC (World Baseball Classic) tournament which was started in 2006. 

The WBC also takes place after four years just like the Olympics but it does not overlap with the regular MLB season, because it takes part during the spring training period and not during the summer when the season is ongoing.

Although the WBC has not gained popularity like the Olympics it is still an international event for baseball and most baseball players are more committed to this tournament than the Olympics all baseball fans hope that the WBC would get more money and gain popularity just like the Olympic games.

5. Players in the 40-MAN ROASTER cannot take part in the Olympic games

In baseball, the 40-MAN ROASTER consists of active MLB players, some Minor League players, and injured players. This roaster contains almost all the best players in baseball. All the players on this roaster can not play in the Olympics and this means that you will not see the best star players you expected to see in the Olympics.

Other players who are not in this 40-MAN ROASTER can take part in the Olympics, this is after a decision was made between the IBF, MLB, and the MLBPA in 2020 to allow baseball players who are not on this roaster to take part in the Olympics.


Most people who are baseball fans would like to see some of their best players in the MLB play in the Olympics but this is not always the case, because you will not see these players take part in the Olympics. They will not be part of these international games because of the following reasons, the MLB fears losing money and losing their star players to injury, and the Olympics comes at a time when the MLB is underway and the MLB will not suspend their season to allow players take part in the Olympic games among other reasons.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • When does the MLB regular season kick-off?

The MLB regular season kicks off in early April and ends in late September.

  • Why was the 2021 WBC tournament suspended?

The 2021 WBC tournament was suspended because of the covid 19 pandemic.

  • When did the IOC suspend baseball from the Olympics?

Because of the shaky relationship between baseball and the Olympics, the International Olympics Committee voted out baseball as an official game in the Olympic games in the year 2008.

Why You Don’t See MLB Players In The Olympics?
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