CLEVELAND — Think back. Remember the first time you heard the crack of a bat, got your first hit playing baseball or softball or watched the joy on your child’s face when they crossed home plate for the first time.
The Cleveland Indians want to keep the joy that baseball brings to so many by hosting its first ever Giveathon.
The Cleveland Indians Charities (CIC) Giveathon, presented by Kaulig Giving, will take place during the Tribe’s home game against the Los Angeles Angels Aug. 2 and will feature many opportunities for fans to contribute. A special game telecast on SportsTime Ohio will be simulcast on WKYC and will highlight the youth baseball programs supported by CIC.
Some of those programs include providing over 300 students in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District with the opportunity to play high school baseball and softball. Additionally, CIC hosts the Senate League’s Championship game every year at Progressive Field.
They also support the Cleveland Baseball Federation, giving some 3,000 Cleveland youth under age 13, the opportunity to play baseball. Over 2,000 other kids also play on 142 rec teams every summer. In fact, outfielders Tyler Naquin and Jake Bauers helped distribute jerseys for those teams this year.
Naquin told our Jim Donovan it was awesome to see how excited the kids were.
“They were nice tops, too,” said Naquin. “They were very appreciative and that was special to me."
Another project CIC takes on is rehabbing fields. They re-grade, build benches, add new fencing and paint bleachers. They also go outside the city limits for this. Since 2007, the Indians have helped fund over 40 youth baseball field improvements in Northeast Ohio.
That also hits home with Naquin who said, “The first organized baseball I ever played was in a pasture, next to a church. Some dads got together, and they asked if I wanted to play. They knew my family and asked if the boys wanted to play and I said yea and we had those orange throw down bases.”
If you want to help, you can donate online at www.indians.com/Giveathon, starting July 29.
A $100 or more donation can get you a signed ball by Terry Francona, Sandy Alomar, Jr., Mike Clevinger, Shane Bieber or Carlos Carrasco. There is also an online auction featuring once in a lifetime Tribe items and experiences.
Fans can also donate in park on Aug. 2 by participating in a 50/50 raffle with a guaranteed pot of at least $25,000, or by heading to the Fan Services kiosk behind section 153. Fans can also stop by the Indians Executive Front Offices to make an in-person donation.
In a press release, Executive Director of Community Impact Rebecca Kodysh said, “We are extremely excited to partner with Kaulig Giving for our first ever Cleveland Indians Charities Giveathon to raise funds for youth baseball in Cleveland. We are constantly looking for ways we can assist our youth – whether that’s field improvements, providing new equipment or educating coaches on proper fundamentals.”