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MLB.com

05/27/2005 11:01 AM ET
Baseball Tomorrow Fund, Cleveland Indians host equipment collection drive
Equipment donations, BTF grant will support local Cleveland youth organizations

In support of the ongoing commitment from Major League Baseball, its Clubs and the players to increase opportunities for youth participation in baseball and softball, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund is teaming with the Cleveland Indians to host an equipment collection drive on Sunday, May 29 at Jacobs Field.

Representatives from the Indians Wives Association and volunteers from the Cleveland Baseball Federation will collect new and used equipment at Jacobs Field prior to their game against the Oakland A's at 1:05 pm (EDT). All equipment collected will be donated to the Cleveland Baseball Federation.

In conjunction with the equipment drive, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund, a joint initiative of Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association, will award a grant of $5,000 to the United Black Fund of Greater Cleveland, which will be used to purchase new equipment for the 2006 season.

On behalf of the Baseball Tomorrow Fund, Indians outfielder Coco Crisp will present a ceremonial check for $5,000 to Ada Perez of the United Black Fund of Greater Cleveland during a pre-game ceremony at Jacobs Field. The United Black Fund of Greater Cleveland, a non-profit organization servicing low-income families through the development and implementation of local programs and events, administers the Larry Doby Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) Program. Each summer, more than 400 boys and girls between the ages of 13-18 participate in RBI which enables them to sharpen their baseball skills and compete in baseball and softball leagues. The RBI Championship Game takes place at Jacobs Field. The Indians' Crisp is an RBI alumnus. Visit their web site at www.ubfogc.org.

This marks the first year the Baseball Tomorrow Fund has teamed with Major League Baseball Clubs to augment their existing equipment collection programs and to help facilitate the creation of new programs. Participating Clubs collect new and used equipment at their ballparks prior to a selected home game(s) and donate the equipment to a local youth baseball or softball organization chosen by the Club. The Baseball Tomorrow Fund awards a grant of $5,000 to a youth baseball or softball organization in participating markets. Baseball Tomorrow Fund grants will be used to purchase new equipment for the 2006 season.

The Baseball Tomorrow Fund is designed to promote and enhance the growth of baseball throughout the world by funding programs, field improvements and equipment purchases to encourage and maintain youth participation in baseball and softball. Since its inception in 1999, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund has awarded grants totaling more than $8 million benefiting 90,000 youth participating in more than 160 youth baseball and softball programs across the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, U.S. Virgin Islands and Europe. For more information visit www.baseballtomorrowfund.com.