Ten local high schools received $20,000 worth of baseball and softball equipment from the Reds Community Fund and St. Elizabeth Healthcare.
An event was held Wednesday at Town & Country Athletic Center in Wilder.
Sal Romano, a pitcher for the Cincinnati Reds, joined representatives from St. Elizabeth and the Reds to distribute baseball and softball equipment to athletic directors, head coaches, and students from Bellevue, Holmes, Dayton, Holy Cross, Newport, Boone County, Ludlow, Grant County, Scott, and Dixie Heights high schools.
“Youth teams across Reds Country need continued support to maximize opportunities for development and growth on and off the field,” said Charley Frank, executive director of the Reds Community Fund. “Our collaboration with St. Elizabeth and Pitch In For Baseball allows us to make a difference in baseball and softball programs in Northern Kentucky.”
St. Elizabeth matched a $10,000 contribution from the Reds Community Fund to help the schools through Pitch In For Baseball, a nonprofit organization and industry leader in providing new equipment and collecting and repurposing baseball and softball equipment. Each school received a share of $20,000 worth of equipment.
“This is the second year in a row for the event,” said Bruno Giacomuzzi, senior vice president and COO of Florence and Grant Hospitals SEH Professional Services. “St. Elizabeth and the Reds increased the total amount of funds awarded and doubled the number of schools and teams receiving donations.”
To date, more than 30 fields in Northern Kentucky have been renovated by the Reds Community Fund, including Meinken All-Star Field, which serves as the home field for Covington Holmes and Holy Cross high schools. Meinken Field was the ninth and final field dedicated during the $8 million MLB All-Star Week Community Legacy Projects when Cincinnati hosted baseball’s Midsummer Classic in 2015.
St. Elizabeth has been providing athletic training coverage to the Northern Kentucky athletic community since 1988. The healthcare system currently serves the athletic training needs of Northern Kentucky University and Thomas More College along with 23 high schools, nine middle schools and several club programs in Northern Kentucky.
“Engaging our communities, developing young men and women, and the love of the game drive our coaching staffs,” said Kyle Shoopman, head baseball coach at Newport. “Partnerships like this help us achieve our goals each season. We’re thankful for what St. Elizabeth and the Reds have provided.”
St. Elizabeth and the Reds will continue to partner on community events and initiatives throughout the 2018 season, including Senior Citizen Specials and NKY Night featuring a bobblehead giveaway on June 30 at Great American Ball Park.