Major League Baseball announced prior to Monday night’s Home Run Derby that it will donate up to $150 million to the Players Alliance, an organization founded by current and former players in 2020 with the mission of creating a more inclusive culture in baseball and more opportunities for Black people within the sport. The donation guarantees an annual $10 million starting in 2023, plus up to $5 million annually by matching external Players Alliance fundraising.
While there's a break in the action....today, we proudly announced a commitment to @Player_Alliance of up to $150 million over a 10-year period as we work together to improve Black representation and access to our sport, on and off the field. pic.twitter.com/jLFHIQqoTm— MLB Communications (@MLB_PR) July 13, 2021
The Players Alliance has taken a massive role in the direction of the sport since being founded by an expansive roster of current and former players last year, including a board of directors that includes president Curtis Granderson, vice president C.C. Sabathia, and secretary Edwin Jackson. The organization played a major role in MLB’s public response to the George Floyd shooting and in the league’s decision to relocate the All-Star Game from Atlanta to Denver following the introduction of Georgia laws which are widely believed to promote voter suppression.
The Alliance has also been extremely active in the community, particularly considering the difficulty that most athletes have had in doing so over the last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They held a 33-city “Pull Up Neighbor” tour last winter that provided a pop-up pantry, personal protective equipment and hygiene products, and baseball gear to communities heavily affected by the pandemic. The organization also introduced a “Gear for Good” baseball equipment drive that provides gear to kids in Black communities, has created a player-led youth mentorship program, and developed an “Alliance Access Program,” a scholarship, internship, and paid student initiative.