About 50 young people fighting serious illnesses enjoyed a game at historic Dodger Stadium on Monday night as the personal guests of the Players, when the Major League Baseball Players Trust’s Buses for Baseball program kicked off it’s 2017 campaign..
Dodgers players Chris Hatcher, Enrique Hernandez, Kenley Jansen, Chris Taylor and former Dodgers great and current broadcaster Orel Hershiser broke away from their pregame routines to spend time with the kids from Tia’s Hope, a charity that provides “memory moments” for children and their families who are forced to spend time in the hospital. The players offered encouragement, signed autographs and posed for pictures before the kids and their chaperones settled in to watch the game as the personal guests of the players.
Tia Palermo, for whom the charity is named, battled non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma for 11 years before passing away in 2012 and spent many days and hours at City of Hope National Medical Center in Duarte, Calif. She was particularly interested in ensuring that kids at the hospital had special experiences to cherish, so Tia’s Hope was created by her family to carry on that work in her memory.
2017 marks the 18th season the Players Trust will be providing unforgettable ballpark memories to hundreds of children in ten Major League cities. Through the Buses for Baseball program, players host groups of underserved kids at ballparks, treating them to a bus ride to the stadium, a pre-game meet-and-greet with players, food, beverages, souvenirs and, of course, a ballgame.
Here’s the remainder of this season’s Buses for Baseball schedule:
June 13 – Chicago White Sox; special guests: Big Brothers Big Sisters (James R. Jordan Boys & Girls Club), which matches adult volunteers with children to help develop positive relationships that have a direct and lasting effect on the lives of young people.
June 30 – Milwaukee Brewers; special guests: Tia’s Hope
July 18 – Kansas City Royals; special guests: TBD
July 25 – Toronto Blue Jays; special guests: TBD.
Aug. 16 – Minnesota Twins; special guests: Starkey Hearing Foundation, which provides hearing aids to people in need in the the U.S. and around the world.
Aug. 18 – Texas Rangers; special guests: Tia’s Hope
Aug. 20 – Houston Astros; special guests: Tia’s Hope
Aug. 21 – New York Mets; special guests: Tia’s Hope
Sept. 19 – San Francisco Giants; special guests: Bessie Carmichael Elementary School, which fosters participation and development of intellect, health, emotional, and social well-being.
Through the Players Trust, Major Leaguers contribute their time, money and celebrity to call attention to important issues affecting those in need and to help encourage others to get involved in their own communities. For additional information, please visit http://playerstrust.org.