MLB, MLBPA provide grant before Cuba tour

Abreu, Puig, Kershaw, Miggy among players participating in trip

MLB, MLBPA provide grant before Cuba tour

Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA), through the Major League Baseball Players Trust, jointly announced that they will provide a $200,000 grant to Caritas Cubana, the U.S.-based, non-governmental provider of humanitarian, social and emergency services to Cuba, in recognition of this week's goodwill tour arranged by MLB and the MLBPA.

Caritas Cubana focuses on assisting Cuba's most vulnerable citizens, including the elderly, children, single mothers, people with disabilities and people living with HIV/AIDS. In addition to conducting programs for these populations, Caritas Cubana distributes medicines and provides emergency relief as needed. To highlight MLB's and the Players Trust's support of Caritas Cubana, the players will visit with the non-profit as part of their tour.

The goodwill tour, which will take place Dec. 15-18, includes MLBPA executive director Tony Clark and Hall of Famers Joe Torre (chief baseball officer, MLB) and Dave Winfield (special advisor to the executive director, MLBPA). Participating active players selected by the MLBPA include Cuban-born Major Leaguers Jose Abreu of the Chicago White Sox, Brayan Pena of the St. Louis Cardinals, Yasiel Puig of the Los Angeles Dodgers and free-agent shortstop Alexei Ramirez, as well as three-time National League Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers, two-time American League Most Valuable Player Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers, four-time AL All-Star Nelson Cruz of the Seattle Mariners and 2011 World Series Champion Jon Jay, now of the San Diego Padres.

The goodwill tour marks MLB's first visit to the island since the Baltimore Orioles played an exhibition game against the Cuban National Team in March 1999. The joint effort will consist of an opening press conference at Hotel Nacional, featuring Clark, Torre, Winfield and the participating players; children's clinics at Estadio Latinoamericano in Havana and Estadio Victoria de Giron in Matanzas; and the charity event in conjunction with Caritas Cubana.