HANKS YANKS BASEBALL “AMBASSADORS OF POSSIBILITY” By William G. O’Connell

 

Hank Steinbrenner with the boys of summer Hanks Yanks

ROBERTO CLEMENTE JR., TO JOIN FORMER YANKEE AND NEW YORK METS MANAGER WILLIE RANDOLPH TO THROW OUT FIRST PITCH OCTOBER 17, 2010 AT 1:OO AS ADELPHI UNIVERSITY TAKES ON HANKS YANKS IN A BENEFIT BASEBALL GAME FOR PITCH FOR A CURE TO “STRIKE OUT JUVENILE DIABETES”

October 14, 2010–(Bronx, NY) New York Yankees owner Hank Steinbrenner generously opened his heart and wallet as he footed the dinner bill for Hanks Yanks, a group of eighteen and under free spirited underpriviledged teens at the Hard Rock Cafe inside of Yankee Stadium this past week. Steinbrenner said, “They are all a great bunch of guys, they all have character. They all have great potential in anything they ever decide they want to do, and they just have to be given a chance.”

Hanks Yanks is a team with kids from all walks of life. Some are from single-parent homes. One became a parent to a two-year-old at the age of 17. Another lost both his parents, and thanks to Hank’s Yanks they are afforded the opportunity to play baseball in a competitive environment, and have avoided the temptations of drugs, crime and a life in a gang, and now cherish a sense of accomplishment. Steinbrenner loves the character and synergy of this team no matter win or lose.

On Sunday October 17, Hanks Yanks will partner with Adelphi University in Garden City, New York in a charity game against the Adelphi University baseball team to benefit Pitch for a Cure (www.pitchforacure.org in Striking out Juvenile Diabates.   Tickets will be sold at the gate for $10 dollars and Willie Randolph will throw out the first pitch and Roberto Clemente Jr., will be on hand to chat with the kids.

New York Yankees baseball has a subculture of superstars waiting in the whim to chase the dream of becoming a big leaguer like millions of other hopefuls, only the spirit of this team is a reflection of the team’s Manager Ray Negron, Special Advisor to the late New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. Negron was recently awarded the Humanitarian Award by the Bronx Chamber of Commerce. Actor Richard Gere–who is in the upcoming first ever animated children’s film in Yankee history Henry & Me which Negron produced–presented him with the award. The movie is expected to be released by Creative Group in February or March, 2011.

Negron knows what struggle is all about, but all he cares about is the kids and building a network of successful teens through hard work ethic with a flavor of the rich Yankee tradition he learned as the former batboy in the dugout being around Yankee greats Thurman Munson, Reggie Jackson, Roy White and the great Yankee teams of the seventies.  Negron makes it his business to get these teens to see that they can contribute in more ways than on the baseball diamond as he impresses upon them the importance of community service. Negron said, “Without the heart and soul of Hank and the Steinbrenner family this is just not possible.” Negron also provides them with the leadership skills they need that are vital to their future success both academically and on the baseball field. 

As baseball season comes to a close baseball has some popular new faces in town. These teens play to win as they recently beat New York Yankees Mariano Rivera’s sponsored team of champions at Yankee Stadium in August.  Former Yankee Slugger Darryl Strawberry threw out the game’s first pitch as Hanks Yanks walked away with the first inagural “Boss’ Cup” with a 3-2 victory!

For Negron, and his close assistants Aris Sakellaridis, a retired corrections officer in his mid-forties and former Baltimore Oriole and New York Mets Bullpen Catcher Rob Dromerhauser it is a dream to watch these teens work hard towards a goal.  Dromerhauser is also President of Pitch for a Cure and his son Connor has type one diabetes. Connor who is one of the batboys for Hanks Yanks said,  “Once I got Juvenile Diabetes, my whole life changed. I now realize how lucky I was before I got Juvenile Diabetes, how easy life was. I also realize how lucky I am–there are many children out there with worse diseases than mine. Sometimes when I’m in church, I thank God for giving me diabetes because it has made me thankful for all the great things that I have in my life. We need to find a cure because people shouldn’t have to go through what I go through each day. Pitch for a Cure can help us find a cure for this horrible disease and help other kids with Juvenile Diabetes.”

The game begins at 1:00pm on William J. Bonomo Memorial Field. All proceeds will benefit juvenile diabetes and Adelphi University athletic scholarships.

Hanks Yanks at Monument Park at Yankee Stadium with Yankee Owner Hank Steinbrenner

FOR MORE INFORMATION www.williamoconnell.net

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