Beginning in 2015, Major League Baseball (MLB) and the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) joined to launch the PLAY BALL initiative, which focuses on the sport of baseball and encourages sustained participation in the sport for years to come. The Mayors PLAY BALL Program’s purpose is to reach kids who don’t normally play baseball and strengthen the connection with those who are currently involved in the game.
As we enter our sixth year of the partnership, we look forward to having mayors help lead the charge in bringing back baseball and softball to cities with 2021 Mayors PLAY BALL Sandlot events. For mayors not familiar, a sandlot is a piece of unoccupied land used by children for pick up baseball/softball games. Mayors PLAY BALL Sandlot events can be hosted in baseball stadiums, parks or vacant lots which allow for safe play.
For 2021 USCM will distribute special Mayors PLAY BALL Sandlot equipment kits to the first 200 cities who register their events. Kits will include a Franklin vibe ball (special for the Sandlot game), plastic softballs, MLB deluxe 4-Piece throw-down rubber base set, foam baseballs, and PLAY BALL bat & ball sets. We will be sending this in addition to the incentive t-shirts and banners typically sent for local events. We will also provide a special link to Franklin if cities would like to purchase more Sandlot kit items for events.
We created a special Mayors PLAY BALL Sandlot Activation Guide and hope the Mayors Sandlot events will help reignite the passion for the game both youth and adults may have lost.
From March to September of each year, with the help of mayors across the country, “PLAY BALL” events are held with the goal of energizing communities and generating support and love for baseball and softball. The COVID-19 Pandemic has been a turbulent time for cities and youth. When schools closed and parks and recreation programs were limited by stay at home orders, The Mayors PLAY BALL Program pivoted to becoming virtual by offering unique ways to promote baseball and softball activities online. This year, as we hopefully resume gathering, Mayors will help lead the charge in bringing back baseball and softball to cities throughout the country with Sandlot Baseball Mayoral PLAY BALL events.