Tag Archives: MLB

Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale

MLB Goes To Bat For Boys & Girls Clubs Of Greater Scottsdale

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale Lehi Branch, which serves youth from the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, is pleased to announce renovations to its facility, which includes the construction of a performance stage complete with lighting and sound system, upgraded fitness equipment, a computer lab, décor improvements and a painted mural representing the Native American culture.

These renovations were made possible by a $50,000 donation from State Farm through Major League Baseball’s 2011 State Farm Home Run Derby at Chase Field in Phoenix.

Raquelle Enos, a 15-year-old member of the Club, was paired with New York Yankees All-Star second baseman and 2011 State Farm Home Run Derby Champion Robinson Cano to win her Club the donation.

“I’m glad I was able to hit so many home runs so that these kids get to enjoy this new teen center,” Cano says. “I had a lot of fun that night with Raquelle, and it’s great to see MLB and State Farm give so much back to the community.”

This year is a special one for the Boys & Girls Clubs and their Native American partners at Lehi – it marks the 20th anniversary of Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Native American communities working together to serve youth. Today, more than 200 Clubs are on Native American lands. In addition, it marks the 10th anniversary of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale’s Lehi Branch. The Lehi Branch, a collaborative effort between the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale and the Lehi Community Center, opened in 2002. It is the second branch to serve Native youth on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community.

“The teenagers at the Lehi Branch have been excited and highly involved in the re-design of the teen center,” says Steve Davidson, president and CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale. “The addition of a separate technology area will provide multiple education and visual arts opportunities, and the upgraded fitness equipment will help emphasize our healthy lifestyle programs. The renovation has made the teen center feel more like home while providing additional program opportunities that will support our Club for years to come.”

In addition to the Lehi Branch, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale also have a Red Mountain Branch, which is on the Salt River Pima Maricopa Reservation as is Lehi, and the Peach Springs Branch, which is on the Hualapai Reservation.

The eight participating American and National League hitters in the 2011 State Farm Home Run Derby totaled 95 home runs during the competition, 11 of which were hit with Rawlings “Gold Baseballs.” Each Gold Ball generated a donation of $18,000 per ball from State Farm and MLB to various charities, including Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). In addition, State Farm donated $3,000 for each non-Gold Ball home run. The home run display generated a donation of $483,000 to Boys & Girls Clubs of America on behalf of State Farm and MLB.

“As a longstanding supporter of Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Major League Baseball shares and supports their commitment to affecting the lives of young people in a positive way,” says Tom Brasuell, vice president of community affairs, Major League Baseball. “We are grateful for State Farm’s generosity through the State Farm Home Run Derby and are proud to work with them to support community programs that have proven to be effective.”

“The power of a home run can be a game changer, just like the power of caring adults who provide a safe and positive environment for young people,” says Pal El, marketing vice president at State Farm. “We are proud to join with Major League Baseball and Boys & Girls Clubs of America to help change the game and the future for young people here in the Scottsdale area and throughout the country. After all, a focus on the future and helping our customers and communities get to a better state is at the core of what we do every day at State Farm.”

State Farm also awarded an additional $120,000 to the Greater Phoenix area Boys & Girls Clubs as part of the Home Run Derby Player “Match-up” program. Enos was one of eight members from local Boys & Girls Clubs chapters who were matched with Home Run Derby participants for a chance to win $50,000 for his or her Club. State Farm awarded each of the other seven participants’ Clubs a $10,000 donation.

For more information about the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale and its renovations made possible by the MLB, visit bgcs.org.

Alison Bailin Batz and her team at HMA Public Relations in Arcadia volunteer their time with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale on their proactive media relations activities as well as special events.  

 

Albert Pujols Adds Extra Excitement To Tempe Spring Training

Albert Pujols Batting

SD Dirk, Flickr

Beautiful weather, sunny skies, hotdogs, beer, and now, Albert Pujols, one of the most prolific players in the MLB over the last decade will be apart of Arizona’s Spring Training season.

Three-time MVP, and reigning World Series champion as part of the St. Louis Cardinals last season, Pujols signed a new contract with the Anaheim Angels who spend their Spring Training season at Tempe Diablo Stadium.

While the Arizona Cactus League brings in fans from all over to watch their favorite teams prepare for the upcoming season, the addition of Pujols adds even a bigger attraction for Angels and baseball fans alike.

And Pujols has told Enrique Rojas (ESPNdeportes.com) that he plans on arriving in Tempe a week earlier than position players are schedule to, which would be around February 19.

At 32-years-old, the first basemen signed a 10-year $240 million deal with the Angels after winning the world-series with the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2011 season.

On top of the $240 million, if Pujols reaches 3,000 hits, he will receive a $3 million bonus. And if he breaks Barry Bond’s home run record of 762, he will receive a $7 million bonus.

While many questioned the Angels for giving Pujols such a long contract, that will conclude when he is 42-years-old, but Angels fans are more than excited about the new acquisition.

Since being drafted in 1999, Pujols was named the Rookie of the Year in 2001, MVP in 2005, 2008, and 2009, and won Golden Glove awards in 2006 and 2010.


The Angels will open up their Spring Training season at Tempe Diablo Stadium facing the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday, March 6. Tickets are on sale now for through the Tempe Diablo Stadium box offices and range from $10-$40.

Tempe Diablo Stadium is located at 2200 West Alameda Drive Tempe, AZ 85282.

ADHD

Podcast: Andres Torres & Playing With ADHD

This summer, the Chusy Haney-Jardine directed documentary “Gigante” will be hitting theaters. “Gigante” is a documentary that follows Torres through his daily routine as a professional athlete and how he handles performing at such a high level while living with ADHD.

Torres spent 10 years in the minor leagues fighting with himself to perform at a high level while trying to maintain focus on the game. And in 2007, he acknowledged the issue; three years later he won a MLB World Series.

Torres, now the center fielder for the New York Mets, is 34 years old and came to the United States from Puerto Rico.

To get a more in-depth look at ADHD and how it affects professional athletes, I spoke with local psychologist Dr. Silverman. He has worked with professional athletes and helping them deal with ADHD through different practices.

Whether it’s neurofeedback practices that measure brain performance and help focus the brain or basic ADHD medication, Dr. Silverman answers some of my questions about the types of symptoms to look for with ADHD and some of the many options to treat it.

For more information on Dr. Silverman’s practices for athletes, head on over to his website at peakperformanceaz.com, and for more of his general work with ADHD head on over to centerforadd-az.com.



Centennial Photos Then and Now, Mesa - AZ Business Magazine May/June 2011

Centennial Series: Photos Then And Now — Mesa, Ariz.

The saying, “The more things change, the more they stay the same” aptly describes the relationship the city of Mesa and the Chicago Cubs share.

Major League Baseball first came to Mesa for spring training in 1952. Back then, the Cubs made Rendezvous Park their home until it was razed in 1976 and replaced with a new stadium at Hohokam Park. In the almost 60 years since the Cubs starting playing in Mesa, the city has evolved dramatically. But one thing hasn’t changed — Downtown Mesa remains a buzz of activity on days when the Cubs play, and the streets around the stadium are lined with carloads of die-hard fans.

Just how popular are the Cubs in Mesa? In 2009, they set an MLB spring training attendance record of 203,105. Average per game attendance was 10,690, leading all of baseball.

Big changes are on the horizon, however. In 2016, the light rail is expected to make its way to Downtown Mesa. And by the end of 2011, Mesa and the Cubs hope to break ground on a new spring training facility and retail area known as Wrigleyville West at Riverview Park at Dobson Road and the Loop 202.

Besides the light rail and the Cubs’ new home, Mesa continues to expand its residential and business base.

Incorporated in 1883, Mesa has a population of almost 470,000, making it the third-largest city in Arizona and the 38th-largest city in the United States.

Then:

Mesa, Ariz. mid-1950, AZ Business Magazine May/June 2011

Now:

Robson & Main, Mesa, Ariz., 2011, AZ Business Magazine May/June 2011

Arizona Business Magazine May/June 2011

Arizona Diamondbacks vs Colorado Rockies - Image provided by Salvatoredbacks from Flickr.com

Diamondbacks Start Off Season Right

The Diamondbacks have a better record than the 2010 World Champion San Francisco Giants.

Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Colorado Rockies - Image provided by salvatoredbacks from Flickr.comComing off a dismal 97 loss season in 2010, I’d be inclined to believe that any player in their right mind would be frustrated – and that’s exactly what Arizona baseball needs to fuel a successful season.

There still may be 154 games left in the regular season, but the D-backs are  4 – 4, just behind the Dodgers and ahead of the Giants at – something Arizona fans are not used to saying.

Yes, we’ve barely seen two weeks of baseball, but management has taken an aggressive attitude concerning on field play which fans hope will continue throughout the season.

Several weeks ago I wrote on the Diamondbacks as Spring training began in the Valley, and praised them on their Kirk Gibson’s preparation for the new season.  With his style of play, it was my hope that they would embrace his toughness and stay focused come April – and it’s happened.

With a tough loss to the Reds on Saturday, they took their revenge on Sunday – going 6 for 15 and displaying moments of magnificence.  With a clutch play in ninth, fielder Chris Young made an amazing catch that  could have been a disastrous for the D-backs.  With that, they eventually held the Reds, defeating them 10 – 8.

His type of play is something that the D-backs need, but it’s up to the players if they can sustain that kind of fire for an entire season. As bad as a season 2010 was, it may have been the spark that they needed to wake up.

In recent years, they’ve become complacent with losing.

As they were down 5 – 0 in the third, it look like just another Sunday blowout of the D-backs.  But it wasn’t.  It wasn’t the same team I’ve seen in past years, and that’s a good thing.

Since their historic 2001 season, Major League Baseball in Arizona has been little more than a blip on sports fans radar.  If the focusArizona Diamondbacks vs. Colorado Rockies - Image provided by salvatoredbacks from Flickr.com that was evident in Sunday’s comeback win can withstand the brutality of the regular baseball season, then I believe they have a chance.  Being down 5 – 0 early in the third, they found a way to win on Sunday and gathered momentum when the time called for it.

So, my intent is not to regurgitate game facts, but to pose the question to Diamondback fans out there – will 2011 be different?

They’ll stay home and take on the St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants this week- possibly two of the best teams in the league, and we’ll truly see if their grit and focus pays off.



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