As the contract terms get hashed out between the New York Yankees and Ichiro Suzuki (which we’ll have as soon as they’re confirmed), we’ll touch upon the philanthropic good spread during this holiday season by some of the team’s top stars.
Professional athletes often have the ability to give back to the community they play in and thankfully the Yankees organization has always used their financial might to help those in need since George Steinbrenner’s family claimed ownership of the team.
Thursday, CC Sabathia and his wife Amber, who have immersed themselves into the local community since the left-hander’s arrival in New York, held their second annual holiday party at the MLB Fan Cave in Manhattan, benefiting 52 children from the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club in the Bronx. The Sabathias also helped out Good Morning America’s One Warm Coat drive to benefit community members in need.
Sabathia’s PitCCh In Foundation has been very active in helping the communities he has played in during his career. Sabathia was once a member of a Boys and Girls Club and he looks at his time there as a special piece of his life.
“A huge part,” Sabathia said. “I went to a club for about 10 years and I still have a lot of great mentors that I still talk to, to this day from there. I’m always happy to do whatever I can to help them out.”
The youth on hand received a new PlayStation Vita in their gift bags and we found out that Sabathia will be one of seven players with a chance to be on the cover of MLB ’13: The Show. The winner will be selected by fan voting to begin next month.
These appearances are also a good spot for getting information from the players. Sabathia stated that the Yankees could still have something up their sleeves, but if not he feels the team has the right parts to be successful in 2013.
“We have the guys in the organization to step up and the guys in the clubhouse to first win the division and then try to win a championship.”
As for his health, Sabathia said he will be ready to begin his throwing program on time in January after having a bone spur removed from his elbow.
Yankees conduct annual holiday food drive
Wednesday, closer Mariano Rivera was at Yankee Stadium to help with the team’s holiday food drive. Rivera took some time to answer questions about the upcoming season as well. Rivera stated he will “definitely” be ready for Spring Training.
“Oh yeah, I don’t see why not,” Rivera said. “We have at least three months, four months to that point. I’ll be ready.”
Rivera had this to say about the signing of Kevin Youkilis.
“Again, all these years that we competed against [him], the guy always gives you the best,” Rivera said. “And that’s what you want for any player — just give you the best.”
Jeter’s Turn 2 Foundation celebrates the holidays at Yankee Stadium
Derek Jeter‘s Turn 2 Foundation has been a major contributor to the New York Metro area for a long time now. One of the events is a Holiday Express (held Dec. 5) and Jeter made an appearance this season. Over 500 children from the five New York City boroughs were able to participate. They were able to meet Santa Claus and received gifts from the foundation.
“This event for our foundation, for our family, is probably the one we look forward to most,” Jeter said. “Any time you’re talking about the holiday season and have the opportunity to give back and meet a lot of kids — 500-600 kids — you want them to have fun. Everyone should feel special during the holiday season.
Jeter also spoke about the team’s moves to that point and how he’s waiting until Spring Training before he forms a full opinion.
“Just when you expect us not to do something, something happens. That’s pretty much been the norm in the 17 years that I’ve been here. So I really don’t know what’s going to happen.”
Jeter also told the media that he would be ready for Opening Day.
“Yeah. Why not? I did it … six weeks, seven weeks [ago]? It’s been a while. So we still have still have quite some time before Opening Day. My hope is to get back as soon as possible.”