2018 / Editorial / Photo Essay

Republic of Baseball

  • Photographer
    Michael Hanson
  • Agency / Studio
    Michael Hanson Photography

No other nation on Earth outside the US produces as many MLB players as the Dominican Republic. This small, Caribbean nation continues to dominate the American pastime. Baseball is a religion here. It’s also a ticket out of poverty. Many families believe their best opportunity to move up the economic ladder is through a professional baseball contract. For many, this road can lead nowhere. He’s one of the lucky ones. In the Dominican Republic, luck takes shape on baseball diamonds.

Michael Hanson is an Oregon-based photographer represented by National Geographic Creative. His Republic of Baseball series received awards from POYi and Communication Arts in 2017. In 2013, he was named PDN30 New and Emerging Photographers. Michael is a frequent contributor to The New York Times and Outside Magazine. Michael’s Photography career began while playing professional baseball in the Atlanta Braves organization. In 2013, he co-directed the award-winning film, Who Owns Water, in his native South. His fine art work is in the permanent archive at the Elton John Collection.