Friday, January 30, 2009

Carlos Beltran, Johnny Damon, Ron Swoboda to Appear At The 29th Annual Thurman Munson Awards Dinner Tuesday February 3, 2009 at Grand Hyatt, NYC

Who: Honorees/Special Guests: New York Mets centerfielder Carlos Beltran; New York Yankees outfielder Johnny Damon; 1969 Amazin' Mets, celebrating the 40th anniversary of World Championship, right fielder Ron Swoboda will accept; outfielder Art Shamsky, shortstop Bud Harrelson, 1st baseman Ed Kranepool, 3rd baseman Ed Charles, Joan Hodges, wife of manager Gil Hodges, son Gil Hodges, Jr., Maxene Agee, wife of centerfielder Tommie Agee, will be in attendance; Giants Super Bowl hero David Tyree; former Knicks All-Star guard Allan Houston; Olympic gold medalist Dara Torres; Corporate Hero Award honoree: Michael Rosen, Partner, Bryan Cave; Diana Munson, widow of late, great Yankee catcher Thurman Munson; Len Berman, NBC Sports, Master of Ceremonies.

What: 29th Annual Thurman Munson Awards Dinner to benefit the AHRC-NYC Foundation

Where: Grand Hyatt New York, 42nd Street at Grand Central; Chrysler Room, Mezzanine Level

When: Tuesday, February 3, 2009 Time: 7:00 pm dinner/ awards

For More Information:

Diana Munson, Thurman's widow, has been involved in the benefit since its inception, raising nearly $9 million to assist children and adults who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. The honorees will be cited for their accomplishments on the field of play and philanthropic efforts. The AHRC New York City Foundation is a not-for-profit organization that supports programs enabling children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to lead richer, more productive lives, including programs of AHRC New York City. AHRC New York City is one of the largest organizations of its kind, serving 11,000 children and adults who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism, cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injuries and other disabilities.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Stars Come Out at the 20th Annual BAT Dinner

Tuesday January 27, 2009 marked the 20th annual "Going to Bat for B.A.T. Dinner" which celebrated the charitable efforts of the Baseball Assistance Team and the memories of Shea and Yankee Stadiums. Over 120 former Major League players were in attendance including 10 Hall of Famers.

During the opening press conference, both Luis Gonzalez and Bret Saberhagen spoke about the importance of B.A.T. Gonzalez's initial intrigue with B.A.T. came from having, "an opportunity to help baseball players and their families in need." After seeing the positive effects of B.A.T.'s efforts, he began to recruit the younger players in the clubhouse to make contributions. He felt it was his way of, "instilling old school values into new players," by helping them give back. Gonzalez was honored with 2008 Bart Giamatti Award for his involvement with numerous community based programs including the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Phoenix Children's Hospital.

Saberhagen helped to raise $100,000 for the B.A.T. this year by winning a golf tournament with Hall of Famers Ozzie Smith, George Brett and former New York Met, Vince Coleman. He saw donating the winning purse to the B.A.T, "as a great way to give back to the baseball community." They received the 2008 Big BAT/Frank Slocum Award for their generous donation to the B.A.T. organization.

B.A.T. president Ted Sizemore said that the fundraising efforts will continue during Spring Training, visiting all 30 teams to educate players about the role of the B.A.T. The Bobby Murcer award will be given to the team that donates the most money during Spring Training.

This year's grant recipients included former Cleveland and Cincinnati farmhand pitcher Jacinto Camacho (1963-70) and Mets minor league outfielder Angel Cantres (1971-76). Both were able to have their expenses paid for acquiring prosthetic legs by the B.A.T. with the help of MLB alum Benny Ayala. Cantres gave a heartfelt speech during the dinner, thanking B.A.T. for giving him the opportunity to once again use the legs that allowed him to play baseball.

Current player representative, Randy Winn spoke about the continued need for B.A.T. awareness, "as any player regardless of circumstance can fall on hard times or have bad luck. It feels great to be in a position to provide assistance to the MLB family."

The evening proceeded with a cocktail reception hour, where many guests mingled with the many Major League alumni, scoring autographs and mingling with the many stars of baseball's past. The guests then made their way to the dinner, which was emceed by Gary Thorne. The Hall of Famers in attendance congregated on stage for photos, and many of the former Mets and Yankees gave their favorite memories of Shea and Yankee Stadium. Ed Kranepool relayed one of the more entertaining stories of the evening regarding the Mets colorful manager, Casey Stengel. "Casey was going to bring me out after a few innings of playing the second game of a double-header in 1964. I had played the first game, so I wasn't that worried; being 19 you're just happy to be out there. Of course, Casey couldn't keep his promise, as he used all of the substitutes within the first few innings and the game just happened to go 23 innings. The game ended at 11:50. If it would have gone 10 more minutes, it would have been the longest game ever, as we would have started in May and ended in June!"

For more information on the Baseball Assistance Team, please visit

Sunday, January 25, 2009

20th Annual Baseball Assistance Team (B.A.T.) Dinner January 27, 2009


Ozzie Smith, George Brett, Vince Coleman, Bret Saberhagen and Luis Gonzalez to Receive Special Awards

WHAT: The 20th annual “Going to Bat for B.A.T. Dinner,” which raises money to assist members of the baseball family who have fallen on hard times, will be held on Tuesday, January 27th at the New York Marriott Marquis Hotel. This year’s dinner will honor Hall of Famers Ozzie Smith and George Brett, former players Vince Coleman and Bret Saberhagen, as well as veteran outfielder Luis Gonzalez. In addition, the ceremony will celebrate the legacy of Yankee Stadium and Shea Stadium. There will be 125 current and former Major League players including many former Yankees and Mets.

The event is open to the public. For more information, please contact B.A.T. at (212) 931-7821 or log on to

Founded in 1986, B.A.T. is dedicated to assisting members of the baseball family through financial grants, healthcare programs and rehabilitative counseling. It has awarded more than $18 million in grants to date benefiting more than 2,300 members of the baseball family.