Miami, Fla. — July 12, 2017 — Alex Rodriguez (A-Rod), FOX Sports analyst and 14-time Major League Baseball (MLB) All-Star, who was a member of Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade as a child/youth, helped lead today’s MLB/Miami Marlins All-Star Week festivities at the Kendall Club. Approximately 1,200 people attended the event.
The event, emceed by Miami Marlins TV play-by-play commentator Rich Waltz, included Miami Marlins Owner David Samson; All-Star Outfielder Giancarlo Stanton; Miami Marlins legends Andre Dawson, Jack McKeon and Charles Johnson; MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred, Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade President Alex Rodriguez-Roig, Boys & Girls Clubs of America President & CEO Jim Clark, and members of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade Board of Directors. Together, the group unveiled the renovated, state-of-the-art Teen Center and the beautiful exterior mural by renowned local artist David “LEBO” Le Batard as well as a refurbished Scotts Field, located across from the Teen Center.
After a ribbon cutting ceremony at the newly-redesigned Teen Center, the group headed to the field refurbished by Scotts, the official lawn care company of MLB. There, Josh Peoples, vice president of Lawns Marketing at The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company spoke; and A-Rod threw out the first pitch to J.J. Gomez, who currently attends Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade.
During his childhood years, Rodriguez attended Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade, where he participated and flourished in its baseball program. At the event, he got emotional when speaking of his life-changing experiences at the club and meeting his baseball coach and mentor, Eddie Rodriguez.
Also during the event, Dr. Craig Spodak provided free preventative dental care and education for approximately 100 children through the All-Star Smiles Foundation, a non-profit organization which he founded with Stanton. The foundation is dedicated to eradicating childhood tooth decay.
The event was part of the MLB/Miami Marlins All-Star Week youth and community initiatives, and one of the All-Star Legacy projects revealed this week. As a complement to the midsummer celebration of baseball and the Miami Marlins, the All-Star Week youth & community initiatives seek to impact the lives of underserved and special needs youth, among other efforts.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade
Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade has been serving youth in the community since 1940. What once was a single building and site for boys has grown to five Clubs serving thousands of boys and girls year round, providing programs in the areas of character and leadership development, educational enhancement, career preparation, health and life skills, cultural arts and sports, fitness and recreation. Club staffing, initiatives, and programs are designed to inspire and enable young people and provide them with the resources to succeed and share in the American Dream. For more information, please visit www.bgcmia.org.