With the sports world effectively shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic, professional athletes and major sports leagues from around the world have been stepping up to help aid stadium workers and others who need a helping hand.
Those acts of kindness extend into the baseball world.
MLB, MLBPA donate $1 million to feed the hungry
On Monday, Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association announced a joint $1 million donation that will be evenly split between Feeding America (FeedingAmerica.org) and Meals on Wheels America (MealsonWheelsAmerica.org).
MLBPA executive director Tony Clark added:
Players are eager to do their part both individually and collectively to ease the significant burdens placed on the most vulnerable people in our communities. This contribution represents one of those efforts.
MLB is committed to playing as many games as possible this season, but with games delayed through at least mid-May it's difficult to envision what a season would look like.
In the meantime, we'll be acknowledging every notable donation as the baseball world comes together to help those in need.
March 14: George Springer donates $100,000 to stadium workers
Among the first Major League Baseball players to pledge a donation is Houston Astros outfielder George Springer. The 2017 World Series MVP told Mark Berman of KRIV Fox 26 in Houston that he will donate $100,000 to displaced stadium workers at Minute Maid Park.
#Astros All-Star OF George Springer donating $100K to the employees at Minute Maid Park who are impacted by the cancellation of events: “These are the people that help take care of my family when I go to work. Now I want to help take care of them when they’re in a time of need.”— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) March 14, 2020
While no regular season games have been officially postponed, it’s looking more and more unlikely MLB will play a full 162-game schedule. The Astros were also scheduled to play two exhibition games at Minute Maid Park prior to opening day.
Alex Bregman donates 1,000 food kits
Springer wasn’t the only Astros’ star to step up on Saturday.
MVP runner-up Alex Bregman donated 1,000 food kits to the Houston Food Bank to ensure that 28,000 meals will be served to children who depend on free school lunches.
Alex Bregman @ABREG_1 scores with Houston youth by donating 1k Quarantine Food Kits! His gift ensures students who depend on free lunches to get 28 meals per kit. Alex asks others to join him & make a donation. https://t.co/qtHrX8ByCE pic.twitter.com/TVJC7b7xxQ— Houston Food Bank (@HoustonFoodBank) March 14, 2020
Astros’ players have been taking lumps all spring in wake of the sign-stealing scandal that rocked baseball over the winter. Fans won’t be quick to forgive or forget, but Springer and Bregman’s are acts of kindness that should be applauded.
Trevor Bauer raising funds for stadium workers
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Trevor Bauer is doing his part to raise funds for stadium workers.
On Friday, Bauer announced plans to hold a “sandlot”-style pickup game in Arizona. On Saturday, he turned the buzz surrounding his plans into a fundraising effort to help cover lost wages.
Bauer’s goal is to raise $1 million.
Tigers pledge $1 million
The Detroit Tigers were the first — and so far, only — MLB team to say it would help cover lost wages for part-time game and event staff. The team has pledged $1 million, which will include covering canceled spring training games.
Ilitch Holdings announces it has set up a $1 million fund to cover a month's wages for part-time game and event staff who lost work due to coronavirus cancellations and postponements, including Lakeland staff for six canceled Spring Training games.— Jason Beck (@beckjason) March 13, 2020
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