The average professional basketball player in the NBA makes around $5.15 million a year while the average professional baseball player in the MLB makes about $3.2 million a year. Is this an excessive amount for anyone to make, no matter their profession?
The highest paid doctor will average a little over $500,000 a year, and the median household only makes an average of $54,000. A Major League Baseball player will make more swinging a bat in one game than an average family will see in one decade. How is it that a grown man can get paid so much for doing something that toddlers do for fun?
When professional sports first started, players needed a side job to make ends meet. Players were not being paid nearly as much as they are today. Salaries have only gone up from there however. This is only possible because of the fans and the supporters of teams. When people are paying the big bucks to see live games, buy official merchandise, and stand in line for overpriced food, they are only upping the salaries for player the next year.
But, consider the flip side. An insurance company is not going to cover a professional athlete, but pro athletes get injured more than someone working a 9-5 job. So, professional athletes have to pay out of pocket for knee surgery, rehabilitation, medications, etc. Another reason for the extreme salaries is their short career. Athletes make money for a much shorter time than any other profession, so they need to make as much money as they can in that short time.
Even though professional athletes are being paid an outrageous amount of money, they is some rhyme and reason for it, although maybe not to the extent to which it is.