Zack Hample is one of our original MLBloggers, saving his first entry for The Baseball Collector on April 21, 2005. Along the way he has introduced the art of snagging baseballs to fans everywhere, resulting in book deals, countless media appearances and a long line of followers and inspired snaggers.
David Rhode is Executive Director of Pitch In For Baseball, an organization that also had its start in 2005. It is well-known as the collector and redistributor of new and
gently used youth baseball and softball equipment to underserved
communities both in the U.S. and around the world. PIFB has
distributed equipment and uniforms to more than 50 countries worldwide
and more than 100 communities around the United States impacting over
60,000 children in need.
It was only natural that these two parties join forces, and below is today’s press release announcing that they have done just that. I hope many MLBloggers and other baseball fans will help contribute to their excellent cause.
Zack Hample joins the Pitch In For Baseball team
New York — Just when the Hot Stove League appeared to be drying up, the dominant player at his position has found his team for 2009. Zack Hample, the recognized leader of snagging baseballs at MLB ballparks, will be bringing his unique talents to the non profit organization Pitch In For Baseball® during the 2009 season.
Zack’s credentials place him at the pinnacle of baseball collectors. Since 1990, he has grabbed more than 3,800 baseballs at 44 different MLB stadiums. What makes this season of snagging so different, however, is that Zack will now be using his unparalleled skills to further the mission of youth baseball and softball non profit partner, Pitch In For Baseball.
Zack’s plan is simple. He will visit various stadiums, snagging baseballs with his usual array of tricks and insights (he can ask for a ball in over 30 languages). Historically, he has been able to accumulate 200-300 balls per season, including balls from batting practice and live play. Individuals and corporate partners can pledge any amount of money for each ball he grabs during the 2009 season by visiting http://www.zackhample.com/charity.php.
Zack’s goal for the season is to raise at least $50,000. That translates to 1,000 supporters donating 25 cents for a projected 200 balls snagged. Of course, Zack hopes more than 1,000 supporters join the “Sultan of Snag” and he also hopes to reel in more than 200 balls.
“I love baseball and I love kids,” says Zack. “Getting to snag baseballs for a charity that combines both is a dream come true. I can’t wait for Opening Day!”
Zack will be opening the season with a trip to Toronto April 6-9 in pursuit of Gary Sheffield’s 500th career home run ball and any other ball he can grab during that series.
Pitch In For Baseball collects and redistributes new and “gently used” youth baseball equipment to needy children both here in the U.S. and around the world. “We are delighted to be able to bring Zack onto our team,” says David Rhode, Executive Director of Pitch In For Baseball. “His passion and the passion of his many followers provide a unique and fun way for baseball fans to support our charitable mission.”