Baseball Tomorrow Fund to Host Equipment Collection on Saturday

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 Texas Rangers teamed up with the Baseball Tomorrow Fund (BTF) to host an equipment collection drive throughout the month of July.

The equipment drive finale will take place at the Rangers game with the Chicago White Sox this Saturday, July 28. Fans may drop off new and gently used equipment from 4:30-7:30 p.m. at any gate at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. The recipients of the equipment will be Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation Jr. RBI and RBI programs from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Arlington and the City of Dallas.

In conjunction with the equipment drive, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund will award two grants of $2,500 to Boys and Girls Club of Arlington and City of Dallas for the purchase of new equipment.  The grant will be given in the name of equipment drive honorary chairman Mitch Moreland in honor of his commitment to youth baseball and softball.  In recognition of the grants, Executive Director of the Baseball Tomorrow Fund, Cathy Bradley will present a ceremonial check to the organizations during a pregame ceremony on Saturday.

The Arlington Junior RBI team, which won the Southwest RBI Regional Championship at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on July 15, will take part in Saturday's pregame ceremony. The Arlington Jr. RBI team will compete in the 20th RBI World Series, which takes place in Minneapolis, July 31-August 12. The Arlington RBI program is a part of the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation RBI program.

Fan can still donate new and gently used equipment at Metroplex Academy Sports + Outdoors located in the DFW area, The Majestic Grand Slam Shop at Rangers Ballpark and the two team shops located in Fort Worth and Dallas through the end of July as well.

The equipment drive is also sponsored in part by Academy Sports + Outdoors, Fox Sports Southwest and the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation.
            
This year marks the eight season the Baseball Tomorrow Fund has teamed with Major League Baseball Clubs to supplement their existing equipment collection programs and to help facilitate the creation of new programs.

Last year, over 15,000 pieces of equipment and over $300,000 in monetary contributions were donated to youth baseball and softball organizations in Major League markets in conjunction with the Equipment Day initiative.  To date, nearly 100,000 pieces of equipment and approximately $1,250,000 in cash donations has benefited organizations in need.

"As we celebrate the eighth season of the initiative, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund would like to thank all of the Clubs, players and fans that have contributed to its success" says Cathy Bradley.  "Every single contribution helped grow baseball and softball in our communities and we look forward to greater success in 2012 and beyond."

The Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation is proud to support more than 2,000 children playing baseball under the RBI and Jr. RBI umbrellas in North Texas. RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities) is a Major League Baseball program, in its 21st year, created to develop and build youth baseball within urban areas. The Boys and Girls Clubs of Arlington and the City of Dallas each operate RBI and Jr. RBI programs with the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation support and support from Rangers players Adrian Beltre and Yu Darvish along with Rangers manager, Ron Washington.

The Baseball Tomorrow Fund (BTF) is a joint initiative between the Major League Baseball Players Association and Major League Baseball designed to promote the growth of youth baseball and softball throughout the world by awarding grants to support field renovation and construction projects, equipment and uniform purchases, coaches training material and other selected program expenses. Since its formation by MLB and the MLBPA in 1999, BTF has awarded over 600 grants totaling more than $22 million to non-profit and tax-exempt organizations in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, Africa and Asia. Approximately 300,000 youth players have benefited from programs and facilities supported by the fund. BTF also facilitates league-wide initiatives including the collection and distribution of new and gently used equipment to organizations in need as well as field maintenance education clinics.  For more information, visit baseballtomorrowfund.com and follow BTF on Facebook, Twitter and MLBlogs.

About the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation: For 20 years, the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation has provided funding and programming to improve the lives of children in need within the North Texas community. The Foundation has given more than $12 million since 1991 to help youth in crisis, youth education, youth baseball, and youth health. To find out how the Foundation is giving back in 2012, please visit: www.texasrangers.com/foundation.