4/11/2014 1:05 P.M. ET
Orioles to celebrate Jackie Robinson Day, Tuesday, April 15
By / MLB.com
In recognition of the 67th anniversary of Jackie Robinson becoming the first African-American player in Major League Baseball, the Orioles will honor a Jackie Robinson Foundation scholar in a special pre-game ceremony before their game on Tuesday, April 15 vs. Tampa Bay. Kapria Lee (Chesapeake, VA), a senior at University of Maryland majoring in Biology will throw the ceremonial first pitch and OF ADAM JONES will serve as catcher. Lee is one of over a thousand young men and women who were able to attend college thanks to the Jackie Robinson Foundation, Major League Baseball, and the Orioles. The Orioles Charitable Foundation has supported Lee with a scholarship for the past three years.
Also on Tuesday, all Orioles uniformed personnel will wear #42, Robinson's number, during the game against the Rays, joining all other major league teams in honoring Robinson's historic achievement. Each player's authenticated game-worn and autographed #42 jersey will be auctioned at www.orioles.com/auction to benefit the Baltimore Orioles Charitable Foundation and the Jackie Robinson Foundation. The auction will begin April 15 at 7:00 p.m. and will conclude April 22 at 11:59 p.m. In addition, MLB.com will be auctioning off an Orioles team autographed #42 jersey at mlb.mlb.com/42jersey to benefit the Jackie Robinson Foundation.
SPECIAL CEREMONIES AND INITIATIVES
ORIOLES REACH AND MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PARTNER WITH AUTISM SPEAKS
On Saturday, April 12, the Orioles will host Autism Awareness Night, as OriolesREACH and Major League Baseball partner with Autism Speaks to recognize April as National Autism Awareness Month. Discounted Upper Reserve tickets are available for purchase at www.orioles.com/tix/autism. $5 of every ticket sold through the site will benefit Autism Speaks.
The following resources will also be available for Autism Awareness Night on Saturday at Oriole Park:
- Quiet Room: Families looking to get some reprieve for a few innings can go to Suite 73. Families can still watch the game from this area, but in a quieter, climate controlled suite.
- Information Booth: Stop by the Orioles Community Booth inside of Gate D to learn more about autism, Autism Speaks, and resources available in our community
In special pre-game ceremonies, Brennan McConnell, age five, from Urbana, MD will throw out the ceremonial first pitch. McConnell attends Centreville Elementary School in Frederick County. He is the inspiration for one of the top Baltimore walk teams, "Brennan's Brigade." The team has attended the last three walks, known as the Baltimore Walk Now for Autism Speaks.
As part of pre-game festivities, a representative from The Shafer Center, PJ Shafer, will be honored for the Center's year-round efforts to raise awareness and more than $24,000 for autism. The Shafer Center was the Kids Area sponsor for the 2013 Baltimore Walk Now for Autism Speaks and the top fundraising walk team in 2013. The Orioles will host a pre-game, on-field check presentation from The Shafer Center to Susan Pereles of Autism Speaks.
Additionally, Priscilla Bucci, a top individual fundraiser for the Baltimore Walk Now for Autism Speaks, will be a part of the Orioles Heavy Hitters ceremony. Bucci is mother of Henry and Andrew Mathias and proud member of team HANK ROCKS. The team walks in honor of 12-year-old Henry, and since Bucci's team started walking in 2008, they have raised over $60,000 for Autism Speaks. For the 2013 Baltimore Walk Now for Autism Speaks, HANK ROCKS was once again a top fundraising team, raising over $14,000.
ORIOLES AND MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL HONORARY BAT GIRL CONTEST
The Orioles are proud to support Major League Baseball in the 6th annual Honorary Bat Girl Contest designed to celebrate the stories of fans who are "going to bat against breast cancer." The club invites Orioles fans to join in spreading awareness and support for the breast cancer cause by voting in the contest to determine who will be this year's Honorary Bat Girl at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
Voting began on February 14 and will continue through Monday, April 14 at www.HonoraryBatGirl.com. The winner, as chosen by fans from among the 45 finalists, will be honored at the Orioles game vs. the Houston Astros on Sunday, May 11 at 1:35 p.m. The winner will also receive two tickets to the game, the opportunity to throw out the ceremonial first pitch, a commemorative package including a jersey, pink wrist bands and pink decals, and the opportunity to watch batting practice from the field.
The Honorary Bat Girl contest was developed to raise additional awareness and support for the annual Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer program, a joint program between MLB and Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the world's largest breast cancer organization.
CHALLENGER LEAGUE CEREMONY
On Saturday, April 12, Oriole Advocates Challenger Baseball and the Baltimore Orioles will welcome over 800 participants in Challenger League baseball programs from Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia. Challenger teams provide children with physical and developmental challenges the opportunity to enjoy the experiences that playing baseball provides.
Each year, one member of the Challenger Baseball Community is awarded the John Salony Memorial Award for his or her efforts in supporting Challenger Baseball. Dr. Salony had a vision to provide recreational activities for children with special needs when few such activities existed and co-founded Challenger Baseball in Maryland over 25 years ago. On Saturday, during a pre-game ceremony, the Orioles will welcome Dr. Salony's son, John to present the award to Terri Hamerick-Eschger for her dedication and support to the Anne Arundel County Challenger Little League.
60th ANNIVERSARY OF FIRST ORIOLES GAME
Sunday, April 13 marks the 60th anniversary of the Orioles' first game (3-0 loss at Detroit). BILL HUNTER, longtime Orioles coach and starting shortstop on the 1954 team, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch on Sunday to commemorate the occasion.
IN THE COMMUNITY
WTTR BIRDS ARE BACK RALLY
On Saturday, April 12, at TownMall of Westminster, Orioles Radio Network Affiliate WTTR Radio (1470 AM) will host the annual "Birds are Back" Rally. The event will be held from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., and Orioles infielder RYAN FLAHERTY and former Orioles outfielder JOE ORSULAK will sign autographs for fans from noon to 1:00 p.m. The Oriole Bird will take pictures with fans and hand out prizes from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. This event is free for all Orioles fans.
AT THE BALLPARK
LARDARIUS WEBB FIRST PITCH
Prior to tonight's game against the Toronto Blue Jays, Baltimore Ravens cornerback LARDARIUS WEBB will throw out the ceremonial first pitch. The Lardarius Webb Foundation will also be at the Community Booth by Gate D to promote their celebrity softball game on June 1 at Ravens Stadium.
SAFETY PATROL DAY
The Orioles have donated 10,000 tickets to safety patrol students throughout the state of Maryland and their families as part of Safety Patrol Appreciation Day on Sunday, April 13, the 60th year the club has supported this program.
April Sayers, a fifth grade student at Leslie Fox Keyser Elementary School in Front Royal VA, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch. Sayers is being recognized for her heroic efforts in saving the life of a student on January 13, 2014. April was on afternoon bus duty when a kindergarten student exited the bus and dropped a toy under the bus's rear wheels. While attempting to retrieve her toy she crawled under the bus just as the bus started moving forward. Seeing this unfold, April quickly responded and yanked the child out away from the bus wheels, thus averting a tragedy.
ADAM JONES & Y OF CENTRAL MARYLAND
In his first official duty as Honorary Chair of the Y of Central Maryland's 2014 Give Every Child a Chance campaign, ADAM JONES will act as host and Y Ambassador at a campaign kickoff event Tuesday, April 15 from noon-2:00 p.m. at Oriole Park. Jones will address the group of Y Board members and other volunteers who raise funds for the Y's charitable cause.
The Give Every Child a Chance campaign raises critically needed funds to help children from low income families participate in Y educational and enrichment programs including camp, preschool, and before & after school programs which help them succeed in school and in life. Jones will speak to the group about his experiences at the Jackie Robinson Y in San Diego and how it played a crucial role in his life and success. Jones' chairmanship of the 2014 Y campaign follows his successful chairmanship in 2013 which enabled 663 kids in Central Maryland to attend Y camp who otherwise would not have been able to due to lack of resources.
With Jones' efforts, the Give Every Child a Chance campaign is expected to raise $1.5 million for kids in need in Central Maryland in 2014.
ORIOLES MILITARY APPRECIATION PROGRAM
As part of the Orioles' Military Appreciation Program, presented by GEICO, the Orioles and OriolesREACH donate a catered private suite at each Sunday home game at Oriole Park to servicemen and women. This Sunday, April 13, military members from the Marine Corps League will enjoy the game vs. the Toronto Blue Jays from a catered suite, have a meet-and-greet with CHRIS DAVIS and ZACH BRITTON, and receive a player t-shirt.
STEAL SECOND BASE PRESENTED BY ESSKAY
The Orioles will again feature the Steal Second Base contest for every Sunday home game this season. Presented by ESSKAY, the Steal Second Base contest allows a young fan to participate in a timed race from the grounds crew area in center field to retrieve second base. Fans can sign up for the opportunity at the ballpark at any Fan Assistance Center. The lucky winner will receive four tickets to that day's game, gift certificates to use inside the park, an Orioles jersey and an Orioles prize pack. The contestants will also get to keep the authentic base that they steal. This Sunday's winner is Joy Kelly, a 12-year old from Thomasville, PA.
ALUMNI AUTOGRAPH SERIES
Every Monday and Thursday home game, former Orioles players will sign autographs on Eutaw Street as part of the Orioles Alumni Autograph series from 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. On Monday, April 14, KEN DIXON, CHRIS HOILES, and JOHN STEFERO will greet fans and sign autographs.
ORIOLES REACH COMMUNITY BOOTH
During each home game the Orioles provide a community booth for charitable, non-profit organizations to distribute information, sell raffle tickets, register participants or conduct health care screenings for Orioles fans. The following groups will be at the community booth, located near Gate D, during this homestand:
|Fri, April 11||Lardarius Webb Foundation|
|Sat, April 12||Autism Speaks|
|Sun, April 13||Babe Ruth Foundation|
|Mon, April 14||Potential Me|
|Tue, April 15||Thankful Paws|
|Wed, April 16||KidsPeace|
ORIOLES REACH GAMEDAY EXPERIENCE PROGRAM
This season, OriolesREACH will again host thousands of underprivileged youth as part of the Gameday Experience Program. Group members receive game tickets, concessions vouchers, an Orioles t-shirt, a cap and transportation to and from the game. Tickets are provided courtesy of Orioles players. Players participating in the program this year include WEI-YIN CHEN, CHRIS DAVIS, J.J. HARDY, TOMMY HUNTER, ADAM JONES, NICK MARKAKIS, BRIAN MATUSZ, TROY PATTON, CHRIS TILLMAN, JEMILE WEEKS and MATT WIETERS. The following organizations will attend games at Oriole Park during this homestand, courtesy of these Orioles players:
|Fri, April 11||Empowering Minds of Maryland's Youth||150||Matt Wieters|
|Sat, April 12||Morgan State University Head Start||150||Chris Tillman|
|Sun, April 13||Baltimore County P.A.L. Recreation||150||Chris Davis|
|Mon, April 14||New Christian Memorial Church||150||Wei-Yin Chen|
|Tues, April 15||One More One Less Mentoring Program||150||Adam Jones|
|Wed, April 16||American Heart Association- Recess||150||Chris Tillman|
GIVEAWAYS AND TICKET OFFERS
|Fri, April 11||AT&T Student Night||AT&T||All students (LF Upper Reserve for $7)|
|Tue, April 15||Ollie's Bargain Night||Ollie's Bargain Outlet||All Upper Reserve seats are $9|
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.