They're apples and oranges. A golf swing is harder than a baseball swing. But baseball is hitting a moving target. Golf success is dependent on hitting to a fixed spot (or a fixed course), in baseball you are successful by hitting the ball to many spots in a wide range.
I think it's impossible to say one's harder than the other. They're far too different to compare.
The number and money questions are moot. The PGA tour only allows a certain number of players, and just like the minor leagues in baseball and the Japanese league, there are tours comparable to those as well. There is no comparison with the money as it is paid out out of what comes in.
Hitting a golf ball and making it do what you want on a consistent basis is not easy, no. But it is something that can be learned. You cannot learn to hit major league pitching. If you can hit it, you can learn things to do to make you better. But it is not something that can be taught. And if you can play baseball, you can generally play golf pretty well, at the scratch level for many. I don't think there is a single golfer who could hit .250 which would be less than the scratch level for baseball. There is no real question about which is the more difficult sport. It is baseball by far.
For some reason, I think that golf rewards practice more than baseball as, however many times you practice in BP, w/ the Mauer hitting gizmo or whatever, you are not going to be able to recreate going up against RJ in the World Series unless you are going up against RJ in the world series.
Baseball generates matchups (hitting/ pitching AND fielding...) on each pitch more than any other sport. Plus, the obsession w/ stats is a much larger part of the history of baseball than any other sport I can think of and leads to more involvement, both as fans AND for players and managers, with guesstimating what to do in a spot, whether it's whether to put Prior in your weekly lineup as a fantasy GM or whether to pull a pitcher going into the 7th inning as a manager or where to throw a pitch or where it's gonna come.
"Hitting a baseball can't be teached"
You are kidding right? Thats why these guys start playing baseball when they are 5? Of course they have a natural talent, but that does nothing if they aren't taught natural swing techniques. And unlike baseball, you actually have to be good to earn lots of money.
I don't buy that pro golf is harder. I see quite alot of over 40 guys on the PGA. How many do you see in MLB? As far as the 140 limit, the PBA is smaller. Bowling is far tougher to make a living at then golf. A very good golfer can finish 10th, and win more then a PBA bowler who wins a tournament. A good golfer only needs to be great for 4 days (72 holes), and he wins $500,000.
Smells Like Teen Spirit
Hall of Fame Hero
(Past Year: 292)
Joined: 12 Jan 2003
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Pearl Jam country, right next door to Nirvana, Soundgarden, and Alice in Chains.
the reason 40 year old guys play golf is because it doesnt take nearly the physical toll on the body as baseball. to be good at golf requires consistency and impeccable judgement, rather than physical ability. in my opinion, and judging from my experience in both sports, it is MUCH harder to succeed at golf, no question. overall there have been good arguments from both sides in this forum and i agree that its too biased judging the difficulty level of such unique sports (especially at a baseball website). the mechanics in golf are different from the mechanics in baseball, as is the goal.
baseball involves hitting a medium sized projectile with a round wooden bat while golf involves hitting a small stationary object with a composite blade, with precision accuracy....
I dont think there's a definite answer to this vague question, its all a matter of personal experience and ability (apples and oranges argument is accurate). for me, like i said, golf was much harder to compete at than baseball. (i only played varsity golf and baseball, no collegiate level)