Indians receive Bobby Murcer Award, for most player donations to Baseball Assistance Team for 2014

The Cleveland Indians for the first time have received  the Bobby Murcer Award, given to a team in each league whose players have donated the most money to the Baseball Assistance Team (B.A.T.) during the organization’s annual Spring Training Fundraising Tour. The award is named for the former B.A.T. Chairman who introduced the annual tour.

Overall, more than 1,400 players, coaches and managers from all 30 MLB clubs have collectively pledged a record donation of $2,523,650 to B.A.T. during the organization’s 12th annual Spring Training Fundraising Tour to raise money for members of the Baseball Family in need of assistance. The donations will be made through the MLB Payroll Deduction Program, allowing players to provide funding for B.A.T. throughout the course of the season. Collective donations from players in the Cactus League ($1,297,900) and Grapefruit League ($1,225,750) set records for each respective Spring Training site. This year’s tour brought the Spring Training fundraising total to more than $17 million pledged over twelve years.

During the tour, B.A.T. representatives and former All-Stars, including President Randy Winn, Vice President Bob Watson, Sal Bando and ”Sudden” Sam McDowell, visited various clubhouses to inform and educate Clubs on the mission of B.A.T. and the support the organization provides. They were joined by several B.A.T. grant recipients who shared stories of the positive effects B.A.T. has had on their lives and the lives of their family members.

“As we conclude another fundraising tour during Spring Training, all of us at the Baseball Assistance Team would like to thank the players, managers, coaches, general managers and staff for their generous donations toward our efforts to help members of the baseball family who are in need,” said B.A.T. President and former Major League All-Star outfielder Randy Winn. “We continue to be grateful and appreciative of the support of the entire industry, including Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association, to allow our organization to continue our mission of offering assistance discreetly and thoroughly.”

The Baseball Assistance Team, now in its 29th year, is a unique organization within the sports industry dedicated to confidentially assisting members of the Baseball Family who are in need with nowhere else to turn. Through charitable contributions from corporations, foundations and individuals, B.A.T. strives to provide a means of support to people with financial, psychological or physical burdens. B.A.T.’s assistance takes a variety of forms including financial grants, healthcare programs and rehabilitative counseling.

B.A.T., a 501 (c) 3 charitable organization, has awarded more than $29 million in grants to date, benefiting more than 3,100 members of the Baseball Family, including former Major League players, managers, coaches, scouts, umpires, athletic trainers, front office personnel as well as Minor League players, Negro League players, players from the Women’s Professional Baseball League and widows, spouses and children, ages 23 and under. All aid provided by B.A.T. is strictly confidential, allowing those in need to receive help discreetly.

For more information about the Baseball Assistance Team or to make a donation, please visit: BaseballAssistanceTeam.com, Facebook.com/BaseballAssistanceTeam or Twitter.com/BATcharity.

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