'Play Ball' auction offers exciting Cardinals items

Proceeds will help renovate youth baseball and softball field

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- An opportunity to watch a Cardinals game from the owner's box and a Busch Stadium specialty ticket package are among the items fans are now able to bid on as part of the 'Play Ball' Charity Auction.

Proceeds from the auction will be used to renovate a youth baseball and softball field in Little Ferry, N.J. The field will be renamed in honor of Shannon Forde, a longtime public relations executive for the Mets who died earlier this year after battling breast cancer.

Several dozen baseball experiences and items are now available in an auction that will run through 8 p.m. CT on Thursday. A list of those items can be found here.

The Cardinals are contributing three of those auction items, including a package described as the Ultimate Busch Stadium Experience. It includes a pair of tickets to the NHL Alumni Game, Winter Classic and Opening Day. The bidding opened at $1,000.

The chance to watch a St. Louis home game from the owner's box is also up for grabs. The package includes 16 tickets to a 2017 home game and began with a minimum bid of $1,000.

The Cardinals are also offering a fan the opportunity to procure a 2017 All-Star Game jersey autographed by every player from the organization who is named to this year's National League All-Star team. The opening bid for this item is $500.

It was back in 2012 that media relations representatives from throughout baseball worked together to start an annual Winter Meetings auction that raised money for Stand Up To Cancer initiatives. It has since become an annual fundraising effort and has generated nearly $700,000.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.