Washington Nationals to Host Annual Baseball Equipment Drive

WHAT: The Washington Nationals will once again partner with the Baseball Tomorrow Fund to host the team's annual baseball equipment drive on Sunday, May 18 at Nationals Park. Fans are encouraged to donate new and used equipment including, baseballs, softballs, bats, batting gloves, catcher's equipment, youth batting helmets, bases, baseball pants and cleats outside of the Center Field Gate from when gates open at 11:00 a.m. until the end of the third inning of the Nationals-Mets game.

The baseball equipment will benefit Southern District Little League (SDLL) as part of the ongoing commitment from Major League Baseball, its clubs and players to increase opportunities for youth participation in baseball and softball. In conjunction with the equipment drive, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund will award a grant of $5,000 to SDLL for the purchase of new equipment to support more than 100 children from Ward 7. Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond* will present a ceremonial check to representatives from SDLL during the pregame ceremony on Sunday.

This year marks the ninth season the Baseball Tomorrow Fund has partnered with MLB to supplement existing equipment collection programs and help facilitate the creation of new programs. The Baseball Tomorrow Fund is a joint initiative between the Major League Baseball Players Association and Major League Baseball designed to promote the growth of youth baseball and softball by awarding grants to support field renovation and construction projects, equipment and uniform purchases, coaches training material and other selected program expenses. For more information, visit baseballtomorrowfund.com or follow the group on Facebook, Twitter and MLBlogs.

WHEN:     Sunday, May 18, 2014

                  CF Gate Opens - 11:00 a.m.

                  First Pitch - 1:35 p.m.

                  Collection will take place through the end of the third inning

WHERE: Nationals Park - Center Field Gate, Half & N Street, SE, Washington DC 20003