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Midwest League Nominates TinCaps for Community Service Award

TinCaps Recognized for Service in Fort Wayne Community
September 18, 2015

FORT WAYNE, Ind. - The Midwest League has nominated the TinCaps as a finalist for Minor League Baseball's 2015 John Henry Moss Community Service Award. This annual honor is presented to a club that demonstrates an outstanding, on-going commitment to charitable service, support, and leadership within their local community and within the baseball industry.

"This is an amazing honor for our organization and a major credit to our parent club, the San Diego Padres," TinCaps President Mike Nutter said. "The TinCaps continued to win on the field in 2015, but the greatest impact we can ever make with the Padres is in our community."

TinCaps front office members and players alike are active in volunteering. All 28 of the team's full-time employees volunteer their time with at least one local non-profit. Collectively, they dedicate their time to some 80 different local organizations and initiatives.

As for the players, beyond simply signing autographs for fans at Parkview Field, they made 10 different appearances in the community over their five-month, 70-game home schedule. These appearances range from reading to school kids to spending time with senior citizens at nursing homes to hanging pink ribbons around Fort Wayne to support the Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer and more.

"The partnerships the TinCaps have made in Fort Wayne are outstanding," said Midwest League President Dick Nussbaum. "Knowing how charitable Jason Freier (team owner) and Mike Nutter are, it's no surprise to see how the rest of the organization follows their lead."

Among the lengthy list of ways in which the TinCaps made an impact in the community in 2015, the team offered 1,500 tickets to active and retired military personnel and their families, and, through a jersey auction, raised more than $5,000 for Honor Flight Northeast Indiana. On top of that, the TinCaps CARE program donated 1,600 tickets to fans who otherwise wouldn't have been able to attend a game. In all, donations from the TinCaps to community organizations this year exceeded $30,000.

Other highlights of community involvement in 2015 include:

  • The TinCaps Reading Program presented by Longe Optical partnered with approximately 400 area schools and libraries to allow more than 27,500 children a chance to earn a ticket, food voucher, and prize for meeting literacy goals.
  • The TinCaps signed Jaymason Curry, a 14-year-old from Fort Wayne who just finished chemotherapy, to a special one-day contract on July 30.
  • TinCaps players and staff members visited Cedar Canyon Elementary School after one of their teachers, a TinCaps fan, passed away.

The national award, for which 14 of Minor League Baseball's leagues have one nominee, will be handed out at the Baseball Winter Meetings in Nashville on Dec. 7. The eponym of the award, John H. Moss, served as president of the Class A South Atlantic League from 1959-2008.  

"This is home for all of us," Nutter said. "We want to make Fort Wayne and our region a better place for everyone."

TinCaps Post-Season Accolades in 2015

  • Midwest League Executive of the Year - Mike Nutter
  • Midwest League Nominee for MiLB's John Henry Moss Community Service Award
  • Midwest League Grounds Crew of the Year