Social responsibility is one of the main tenets of Major League Baseball. Through their commitment to spreading awareness with these league-wide programs and initiatives, in partnerships with several non-profit organizations, each of the 30 MLB Clubs are able to make a large impact on the various communities they serve. Throughout the season, the Rangers celebrate these initiatives at Globe Life Park in Arlington.
The Texas Rangers host Autism Awareness Night in honor of Autism Awareness Month. Last season, nearly 100 families with members on the Autism spectrum were in attendance. Players will wore Autism Speaks "Shine a Light on Autism" shirts during warm-ups in efforts to raise awareness, and the inaugural first pitch was thrown out by a young boy who is on the autism spectrum.
Friday, April 15 MLB commemorated the 69th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking Baseball's color barrier. Last season, for the seventh consecutive year, all players and on-field personnel wore Robinson's retired number, 42. A special on field pre-game ceremony was held to recognize the local chapter of the United Negro College Fund and representatives from local HBCUs. Texas State District 109 Representative Helen Giddings threw out the ceremonial first pitch.
In collaboration with MLB and USA Baseball, Play Ball is an initiative to encourage kids to go out and enjoy the game outside the traditional spectrum of games and formal practices. Each of the 30 MLB clubs will participate in Play Ball Weekend, where kids will have the opportunity to go out and get active with their local market's team.
Play Sun Smart is a joint effort by MLB, the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) and the American Academy of Dermatology to raise awareness of skin cancer and offer prevention and detection tips to the baseball community. Last season, Rangers RBI held a special on field ceremony before the game where the kids provided sunscreen to the players before they went onto the field.
For the 11th year in a row, MLB dedicated all games on Mother's Day to the fight against breast cancer. The "Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer" initiative supports Stand Up To Cancer and Susan G. Komen. Last season, players and on-field personnel wore wear the symbolic pink ribbon on their uniforms, and during a special pre game presentation over 500 breast cancer survivors and their loved ones were part of an on field parade, with the winner of the annual Honorary Bat Girl contest throwing out the ceremonial first pitch.
Every Father's Day MLB is teams up with the Prostate Cancer Foundation again to raise awareness about prostate cancer and raise funds for research to fight the disease. Each season, players, managers, coaches, trainers, umpires and groundskeepers will wear blue wristbands and blue ribbon uniform decals in honor of the day.
Last season, MLB paid tribute to Hall of Famer Lou Gehrig on the 75th anniversary of his iconic "Luckiest Man" speech by joining forces with ALS organizations to raise awareness for the disease, otherwise known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The Hall of Fame first-baseman made his speech upon retiring from baseball on July 4, 1939. This season, a member of the ALS Association threw out the ceremonial first pitch.
In 2005, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund established the BTF/MLB Equipment Day, a national initiative to encourage the collection and distribution of used equipment to organizations in need.
Each year, MLB Clubs hold equipment drives at their stadiums where fans, front office, staff and players are invited to donate new and used equipment to benefit a local organization. Last season, in conjunction with the items collected at the gates, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund awarded a $5,000 grant to the Rangers RBI Programs in Dallas and Fort Worth.
The Roberto Clemente Award, originally known as The Commissioner's Award, recognizes the player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team. Each year, every Club nominates a player that truly understands the value of helping others. In 2015, the Rangers nominated Andre Beltre.
September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, so Major League Baseball clubs will #GoGold in their own unique ways. Last season, multiple local charities were part of special pregame presentation.
The Players Trust Buses for Baseball program provides thousands of disadvantaged youth with an unforgettable trip to a Major League baseball game. Last season, over 50 individuals from Rae's Hope, a local Dallas based charity, were treated to an unforgettable day at the ballpark as the personal guests of the Players Trust and Rangers players.