ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Albert Pujols swapped his baseball cleats for basketball sneakers during his annual Albert’s All-Stars Basketball Game to benefit people with Down syndrome.
The Jan. 31 event at Missouri Baptist University raised awareness while providing Albert’s All-Stars — a team of kids with Down syndrome — the opportunity to play basketball alongside celebrities including Olympian Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Cardinals pitching coach Jason Simontacchi and former Rams cornerback Aeneas Williams.
The night began with a tribute to Meadowlark Lemon, a former Harlem Globetrotter, who passed away in December. Lemon previously participated in the charity event.
The Totally Awesome Girlfriend Group (TAGG) pom squad performed the halftime show. TAGG is comprised of teenage girls with Down syndrome. MBU cheerleaders joined them on the court after TAGG’s first routine.
In the game, Albert’s All-Stars handed the MBU Spartans a not-so-tough loss.
Pujols, a 10-time MLB All-Star whose daughter, Isabella, has Down syndrome, founded the Pujols Family Foundation to provide hope and meet tangible needs for children and families who live with Down syndrome.
The Pujols Family Foundation also aims to improve the standard of living and quality of life for impoverished children in the Dominican Republic through education, medical relief and tangible goods.
Two weeks before the basketball event, the Pujols Family Foundation brought a team of medical professionals to the Dominican Republic on a medical mission.
Major Leaguers are #GoingToBat for causes near and dear to them, as they personify the Players Trust’s motto to ‘care, act and inspire.’ To learn more about the charitable interests and activities of Major Leaguers, please click here.