Bryan Buxton (Fox Sports Net)

When Major League Baseball celebrated Jackie Robinson Day in April of this year, it was with the lowest percentage of African-American players since the earliest days of the sport's integration, USA Sports reported.

When the numbers began to dip dramatically in recent years, the league made a concerted effort to expand its African-American talent pool through its opening of urban youth academies and the Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities, or RBI, program.

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And Monday night's amateur draft suggested that the league has been having some success with those efforts, Fox News reported on Wednesday. The 31 first-round picks included seven African Americans (representing 22 percent of the picks), the most by total and percentage in 20 years, according to research by MLB.

The African-Americans selected in the first round were:

Outfielder Byron Buxton (No. 2, Twins);

Shortstop Addison Russell (No. 11, Athletics);

Outfielder Courtney Hawkins (No. 13, White Sox);

Outfielder D.J. Davis (No. 17, Blue Jays);

Right-handed pitcher Marcus Stroman (No. 22, Blue Jays)

Outfielder Victor Roache (No. 28, Brewers), and;

Outfielder Lewis Brinson (No. 29, Rangers).

No more than five African-Americans had been selected in the first round since 1992. Just one was chosen last year — right-handed pitcher Joseph Ross, who went to the Padres with the 25th pick.

Read more at Fox News.