Promotion will benefit Stand Up To Cancer. $2 Million in potential donations to cancer charity if “Hit It Here” sign is struck during State Farm® Home Run Derby and MLB All-Star Game.July 8, 2009 – Major League Baseball and MasterCard Worldwide announced today that Stand Up To Cancer, for the first time, will be the recipient of donations in the “Hit It Here” in-stadium promotion during All-Star Week. The promotion is part of Major League Baseball’s commitment to dedicating 2009 All-Star Summer to raising funds and awareness for charitable initiatives and celebrating the importance of community service. The first home run to directly strike one of the MasterCard “Hit It Here” signs in Busch Stadium during the 2009 State Farm® Home Run Derby or the 2009 MLB All-Star Game will result in MasterCard donating $1 million to Stand Up To Cancer. If a sign is hit during both events, MasterCard will donate a total of $2 million. In previous years, the promotion was designed to award a lucky fan in attendance at the events.
There will be three pre-designated MasterCard “Hit It Here” signs at Busch Stadium. The first sign is approximately 20’ x 7’ and is placed vertically on the left field light post; the second sign is approximately 8’ x 33’ and is horizontally positioned in left center field; the third sign is approximately 4’ x 20’ and is horizontally placed in right field along the facade of the upper deck. The 2009 State Farm® Home Run Derby, part of Gatorade All-Star Workout Day, will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN HD, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio in the United States beginning at 8:00 p.m. (EDT)/7:00 p.m. (CDT) on Monday, July 13th. The 80th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and Sportsnet HD and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International, with pregame ceremonies beginning at 8:00 p.m. (EDT)/7:00 p.m. (CDT). ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage, while MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage.
“The importance of charitable initiatives and community service is more significant than ever, and we’re proud to say our business partners are joining us in our efforts to make MLB All-Star Summer all about giving back,” said John Brody, Senior Vice President, Corporate Sales & Marketing, Major League Baseball. “MasterCard deserves a great deal of credit for aligning this in-stadium promotion with the MLB ‘Going Beyond’ message to benefit such a worthy cause as Stand Up To Cancer.”
“Stand Up To Cancer’s purpose of enabling research that will ultimately lead to a cure is a cause that ties together our employees, customers and cardholders,” said Rob Steeger, Vice President, US Sponsorships, MasterCard Worldwide. “MLB All-Star Week provides a powerful platform from which to build awareness for this important mission that connects us all.”
“Every single person can play a role in helping the scientists who are working 24/7 to end cancer. We’re profoundly grateful to MLB and MasterCard for their support, and for giving us a wonderful opportunity to drive that message home,” said Stand Up To Cancer Executive Director Diane Balma, who is also a cancer survivor. “Congratulations to all of the All-Stars; we hope they will aim for the signs!”
Major League Baseball has responded to United States of America President Barack Obama’s call for community service through “United We Serve,” a program which encourages all Americans to be part of building a new foundation for America by engaging in sustained and meaningful community service. President Obama is encouraging all Americans to visit www.serve.gov to find service opportunities in their area. Major League Baseball has dedicated the 2009 All-Star Summer events to raising funds and awareness for charitable initiatives while celebrating the importance of community service. The charity and community service initiatives, themed “Going Beyond,” will be the most extensive in Major League Baseball All-Star history. It complements the celebration of values and the traditions of baseball with the St. Louis Cardinals.
In the span of just a year, Stand Up To Cancer raised more than $100 million due in part to an historic hour-long program simultaneously broadcast on ABC, CBS and NBC, on September 5, 2008. In May 2009, SU2C announced its first funding of more than $73 million to five Dream Team collaborations, comprised of more than 38 principal investigators from over 20 leading institutions, with more than 330 individuals participating in total.
About the 2009 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
The 80th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be played on Tuesday, July 14th in St. Louis and will feature the best of the American League taking on the top players of the National League. Major League Baseball has responded to United States of America President Barack Obama’s call for community service through “United We Serve,” a program which encourages Americans to engage in sustained and meaningful community service. Building up to the excitement of the All-Star Game, Major League Baseball will conduct a wide variety of special events and charitable activities for fans both inside and outside of Busch Stadium. At the ballpark, the events will include Taco Bell All-Star Sunday on Sunday, July 12th featuring the XM All-Star Futures Game and the Taco Bell All-Star Legends & Celebrity Softball Game, and Gatorade All-Star Workout Day on Monday, July 13th featuring the State Farm Home Run Derby. Outside of the ballpark, fans will have an opportunity to experience All-Star Summer through a variety of special events including Major League Baseball All-Star FanFest, the five-day interactive fan festival; the MLB All-Star Charity Concert presented by Pepsi benefiting Stand Up To Cancer, a free concert for fans under The Gateway Arch featuring Sheryl Crow; the All-Star Charity 5K & Fun Run presented by Sports Authority and Nike, a charity run on a baseball-themed route to benefit three cancer organizations; and the All-Star Game Red Carpet Show presented by Chevy, a free parade of All-Stars leading into Busch Stadium. The Midsummer Classic will be televised nationally on FOX Sports and will be shown around the world by Major League Baseball International. For more information about 2009 All-Star Summer, visit http://www.allstargame.com.
About MasterCard and Major League Baseball
MasterCard has been an official sponsor of Major League Baseball since 1997 and is the preferred card of MLB and MLB Advanced Media. MasterCard also maintains sponsorship alliances with 11 MLB Clubs: Atlanta Braves, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Cleveland Indians, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics, Philadelphia Phillies and St. Louis Cardinals.
About Stand Up To Cancer
Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) is a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF) and was established by a group of media, entertainment and philanthropic leaders whose lives have been affected by cancer in significant ways. The group includes Katie Couric; the Entertainment Industry Foundation, represented by Board of Directors Chairperson Sherry Lansing (Founder of the Sherry Lansing Foundation), CEO Lisa Paulsen and Vice President Kathleen Lobb; Laura Ziskin; Noreen Fraser, founder of the Noreen Fraser Foundation; Rusty Robertson and Sue Schwartz of the Robertson Schwartz Agency; and nonprofit executive Ellen Ziffren. Both Ziskin and Fraser are cancer survivors.
SU2C’s Dream Team approach to funding translational cancer research is designed to bring together the best and brightest scientists from different disciplines at research centers across the country and internationally who will work collaboratively to quickly address today’s critical problems in patient care. Monies will also be used to support innovative cancer research projects, which are often deemed “too risky” by conventional funding sources. As a partner in SU2C, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), led by a prestigious SU2C Scientific Advisory Committee, provides scientific oversight, expert review of the research projects, and grants administration.
Contact: Jeff Heckelman or Lauren Verrusio, Major League Baseball, (212) 931-7878
Tristan Jordan, MasterCard Worldwide, (914) 249-5724