Why did MJ really play baseball?

Michael Jordan, arguably the greatest basketball player of all time, shocked the world when he announced his retirement from the NBA to pursue a career in baseball. What was the reason for his decision? Was it a personal choice, or was there more to it? In this article, we will explore why Michael Jordan really decided to take a break from basketball and try his hand at baseball.

Michael Jordan’s Early Life

Michael Jordan was born in Brooklyn, New York on February 17, 1963. His family moved to Wilmington, North Carolina when he was five years old. Jordan was a talented basketball player from an early age, and he was accepted into the varsity basketball team at his high school as a sophomore. He then went on to play for the University of North Carolina, where he was the star of the team.

Michael Jordan’s Rise to Stardom

In 1984, Jordan was drafted by the Chicago Bulls and quickly rose to stardom. During his time with the Bulls, he was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player five times, led the Bulls to six championships, and was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History. Jordan was also a successful businessman, launching the Michael Jordan Brand in 1997.

The Retirement

In October of 1993, Jordan announced his retirement from basketball due to his desire to pursue a career in baseball. He had been a lifelong fan of the sport, and had played baseball in high school. He also cited his father’s murder in July of that year as a motivating factor for his retirement.

The Minor League Years

Jordan signed with the Chicago White Sox and was assigned to their minor league affiliate, the Birmingham Barons. He trained and played with the team for over a year, and although he had success at the plate, his fielding was below average.

The Return to Basketball

In early 1995, Jordan announced his return to the NBA and the Chicago Bulls. He went on to lead the Bulls to three more championships and cemented his status as one of the greatest players of all time.

Speculation Behind The Retirement

Although Jordan has stated that his desire to pursue a career in baseball and the death of his father were the primary reasons for his retirement, there are those who believe that there was more to it. After Jordan’s father was murdered, the FBI began investigating a group of people believed to be involved in gambling on NBA games. It is speculated that Jordan was aware of this investigation and retired in an effort to avoid being implicated.

Jordan’s Legacy

Michael Jordan is widely considered to be one of the greatest basketball players of all time. He was a six-time NBA champion, five-time MVP, and is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame. He is also a successful businessman, having launched the Michael Jordan Brand, which is one of the most successful sports apparel companies in the world.

The Reason Behind Jordan’s Retirement

While the exact reason behind Jordan’s retirement is still a mystery, it is believed that his desire to pursue a career in baseball and his father’s death were the primary reasons for his decision. Jordan himself has said that he wanted to try something different, and that he wanted to honor his father’s memory by pursuing his own dreams.


Michael Jordan’s retirement from basketball in 1993 was a shock to the entire sports world. Although the exact reason behind his decision is still unknown, it is believed that his desire to pursue a career in baseball, his father’s death, and the FBI’s investigation into gambling on NBA games were all factors that played into his decision. Regardless of the reason, Jordan’s legacy as one of the greatest basketball players of all time is undeniable.

Michael Jordan, NBA, Chicago Bulls, Birmingham Barons, Basketball Hall of Fame, Michael Jordan Brand, FBI, Gambling, Retirement, Baseball