Minor League teams aid Haitian relief01/26/2010 6:04 PM ET
By Benjamin Hill / MiLB.com
The devastating earthquake that hit Haiti on Jan. 12 has resulted in a massive outpouring of aid from the international community. Several Minor League teams already have joined in the relief efforts, with more sure to follow. Here is a list of teams that have announced Haitian relief initiatives:
Albuquerque Isotopes (Pacific Coast League)
On Friday, the Isotopes will host a Haitian Relief Pitch fundraiser. The club is setting up a donation drive-thru area in the parking lot, with volunteers (including local media personalities) collecting donations. All who donate will receive a free ticket to a 2010 game, as well as a raffle ticket that could result in prizes from various local businesses.
Akron Aeros (Eastern League)
The Akron Aeros committed to donating 25 percent of all mini-plan ticket sales made between Jan. 25-31. "We felt like we needed to find some way to assist the struggling people of Haiti. We hope that the money raised next week will help aid relief efforts," said general manager Jeff Auman. The Aeros are also encouraging fans to make donations to UNICEF.
Bowie Baysox (Eastern League)
The Baysox have set up an online raffle, with all proceeds benefiting UNICEF. Fans can purchase raffle tickets for $10, with the winner receiving a pair of 2010 season tickets (valued at more than $1,100). The raffle runs through Jan. 29.
Brooklyn Cyclones (New York-Penn League)
From Jan. 24-26, the Cyclones are hosting a relief drive in the parking lot of KeySpan Park. This effort is in conjunction with a local radio station, and fans are encouraged to donate clothing, first aid supplies, toiletries and other essential items.
Charlotte Knights (International League)
Homer, the Knights' dragon mascot, will be waiting tables at Saturday's "Jazz Lunch for Haiti" (to be held at McHale's, a local restaurant). A portion of the proceeds benefit the Red Cross, and volunteers from the organization will be on hand to accept additional donations.
Everett AquaSox (Northwest League)
The AquaSox joined with local organizations on a week-long coin drive. AquaSox staff partnered with a local elementary school to collect money at a professional indoor lacrosse game Jan. 22.
Harrisburg Senators (Eastern League)
Some lucky fans looking to do their part in Harrisburg will win one of two suites at the Senators' new Metro Bank Park for a 2010 home game. The team is selling raffle tickets at 10 bucks each, and all proceeds are being donated to UNICEF. Donations and raffle tickets can be purchased in person at the team offices or through the team's site.
Midland RockHounds (Texas League)
The RockHounds have teamed with the West Texas United Sockers club to create the "Rocks and Socks for Haiti" fund. Individuals who contribute to the fund will receive a pair of ticket vouchers good for admission to any game on either club's 2010 schedule.
Pawtucket Red Sox (International League)
Members of the Rhode Island chapter of the American Red Cross will be at McCoy Stadium on Saturday, collecting donations during the PawSox's annual Hot Stove League Party. The event will run from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and feature appearances by new Pawtucket manager Torey Lovullo along with pitchers Casey Kelly and Junichi Tazawa and outfielder Ryan Kalish.
Quad Cities River Bandits (Midwest League)
Fans who donate $10 or more to the Haitian Relief fund of the American Red Cross of the Quad Cities Area will receive a voucher for a free ticket to any Bandits home game in April and will be entered into a drawing to win a $500 AirTran Airways gift voucher, courtesy of the Quad City International Airport. Donations can be made at the River Bandits front office at Modern Woodmen Park Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Round Rock Express (Pacific Coast League)
The Express are teaming with Jubilee World Missions to host a Haiti relief benefit dinner called Connecting the Dots, which will take place on Thurs., Feb. 11 at 6 p.m at the Dell Diamond in Round Rock. A live auction will also take place. Tickets are $50, and all proceeds go to the relief effort.
San Jose Giants (California League)
On Friday, the Giants announced they had made a $1,000 donation to UNICEF and are encouraging fans to get involved in the relief effort, as well.
St. Lucie Mets (Florida State League)
Tickets for Major League Spring Training go on sale Saturday at St. Lucie's Tradition Field. In conjunction with this busy day at the box office, the club will have volunteers from the Red Cross stationed outside the ballpark to accept donations.
Visalia Rawhide (California League)
The club announced that its game on April 21 has been designated as a "Haiti Relief Drive" evening. All money resulting from the game's ticket sales will be donated to UNICEF, and the team also plans to collect needed supplies throughout the evening.
West Michigan Whitecaps (Midwest League)
Through Jan. 27, West Michigan's Fifth Third Field will be serving as a collection site for relief items. A wide variety of food, medical and hygiene-related items are needed. The full list can be viewed on the team's Web site.