Gloves For Kids

"Gloves for Kids" is the brainchild of Kansas City Royals broadcaster, Ryan Lefebvre.  Ryan approached me before a spring training game in 2002 and explained that, thanks to the help of the Royals players and ****’s Sporting Goods, he had raised several thousand dollars the previous summer to help provide underprivelaged children with baseball gloves.  Kids who otherwise might pass up the chance to play the greatest game on earth are now given an essential piece of equipment (and the most expensive) that will enable them to take part in America’s Pastime.

The great people at ****’s Sporting Goods (headquartered in Pittsburgh) met with us during the summer of 2002 and we decided to have our own "Gloves for Kids" fundraiser during the 2003 Pirates season.  The event turned out to be a huge success. Thanks to the tremendous cooperation and support of the Pirates players and front office staff, we raised over $12,000 over a three-hour period. Baseball fans jammed the ****’s Sporting Goods at the Northway Mall on McNight Road to get autographs from players like Mike Williams, Brian Giles, Kris Benson, Kip Wells, Josh Fogg, Jack Wilson, Reggie Sanders, Kevin Young and Jeff Suppan.

Hundreds of gloves were then purchased and handed out several days later to help kids in the Pittsburgh area R.B.I. program.  If only every person who donated money that evening could have seen the faces of those young children as they were handed their very own  (and very first)  baseball gloves!

That brings us to 2005, and once again the fine folks at ****’s Sporting Goods are "going to bat" for the kids. This year, we’ll be raising money to purchase gloves for the Boys and Girls Club of Western Pennsyvlania.  On Thursday night, May 19th from 6 pm to 9 pm baseball fans will be asked to donate $20 for each hour of the event.

From 6 pm to 7 pm Jack Wilson, Spin Williams, Tike Redman, Mike Gonzalez and Mark Redman will be signing autographs.  From 7 pm to 8 pm Lloyd McClendon, Oliver Perez, Jose Mesa, Daryle Ward, Dave Williams and Humberto Cota will be on hand. From 8 pm to 9 pm Jason Bay, Rob Mackowiak, Kip Wells, Josh Fogg, Bobby Hill and Craig Wilson will be signing autographs.

In addition to the autographs, some top-of-the line merchandise will available as part of a silent auction. Fans will also have a chance to win cash and other memorablia as part of our raffle.

Silent auction items include the following AUTHENTIC game jerseys autographed by the player:  Jim Thome, Sean Casey, Ken Griffey Jr., Curt Schilling, Johnny Damon, Hideki Matsui, Derek Jeter, Oliver Perez, Jason Bay, Jack Wilson and Roger Clemens.

In addition, two authentic personalized and autographed bats are available in the silent auction: Jason Bay’s and Jack Wilson’s.

Memorablia ranging from color autographed photos of several Pirates players, plus an actual autographed base and home plate to autographed baseballs from Greg Maddux, Aramis Ramirez, Craig Biggio and others will be raffled off throughout the evening.

If you’re a baseball buff… You’ve Got To Be There!!!!!!!

The Bucs are playing great ball and there’s a bunch of excitement in the Pittsburgh area. We’re expecting quite a crowd to come out and meet the players plus contribute to a worthy cause.

Hope you’ll plan to join us at the ****’s Sporting Goods at The Mall at Robinson from 6-9 pm on Thursday night, May 19th.

If you can’t be there, tune in to KDKA radio AM 1020 throughout the evening for updates and place your bid on the Derek Jeter jersey which will be auctioned off on the air that night!!!

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