This season, every strikeout recorded by Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer will benefit both Burg Baseball Inc. and RBI Baseball of Tampa. For every strikeout Archer logs, the righthander will join the Rays and WTSP 10 News to each donate $25 to be split among the youth leagues.
Archer struck out nine batters last night to take over the major league lead with 30, bringing the season total to $2,250.
"I've seen firsthand the positive influence that both of these organizations have on youth in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area," said Archer. "Since my time is often limited, I'm encouraged to do more monetarily to help these worthy leagues."
Burg Baseball Inc. is a nonprofit organization that provides youth ages 4 to 16, from St. Petersburg families living at or near poverty level, with an organized baseball program, at little or no cost to the families of players. Since 2007, Burg Baseball has left a positive mark on the lives of over 1,600 St. Petersburg youth by teaching not only pitching, fielding, and batting skills, but also sportsmanship, character and teamwork.
"We share in the infectious enthusiasm and passion that Chris Archer and the Tampa Bay Rays have in supporting our players and staff at Burg Baseball," said Burg Baseball President Charles Castle III. "The opportunity at stake for the young people of St. Petersburg is nothing less than growth-athletic, socioeconomic, personal and moral growth."
The Rays Tampa RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities) program has served the Tampa Bay area for more than 10 years as an MLB outreach baseball and softball program. For more than 500 inner city youth, Tampa RBI provides structured play, discipline and mentoring while fostering a culture of teamwork and respect.
"We are very excited about Chris Archer's strikeout campaign," said former major league outfielder and Tampa RBI Director of Operations Mark Whiten. "Our motto is simply: transforming lives one strike at a time thanks to Chris Archer, the Tampa Bay Rays and WTSP 10 News."
"Our station is excited to partner with Chris, the Rays, Burg Baseball and Tampa RBI," said WTSP 10 News General Manager Elliott Wiser. "It is important for our station to give back to the community we cover."