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New national Girls Softball Division added in 2010 Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run Program04/01/2010 4:15 PM ET
Major League Baseball Properties and Aquafina today announced the 2010 Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run, the "Official Youth Skills Competition of Major League Baseball," is underway with over 4,000 competitions planned to take place across North America. For the first time, a nationwide Girls Softball Division has been incorporated into the existing Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run program. The youth skills program will reach more than 600,000 boys and girls between the ages of seven and 14, providing an integrated competition that recognizes individual excellence in core baseball and softball skills. Aquafina, the "Official Bottled Water of Major League Baseball," is in its third year sponsoring the grassroots program following its sister brand, Pepsi, the "Official Soft Drink of Major League Baseball," which was the title sponsor between 2002 and 2007.
The Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run program is also a key component of the active role Major League Baseball is taking to support the White House Anti-Obesity Campaign introduced by First Lady Michelle Obama earlier this year. This nationwide campaign is designed to unite and inspire families to take real and sustained actions to eat better, be more active, and make a commitment to embracing healthier lifestyles.
Pitch, Hit & Run (PHR) invites youth to demonstrate their skills, competing in pitching, hitting and running abilities. PHR participants can advance through four levels of competition, beginning at the local level, which can be hosted by organizations, leagues, or volunteers within a community, and continuing through sectional and team competitions. All 30 MLB Clubs will host team championships at their ballparks on weekends from May 29 through June 27. The top competitors nationwide from each age group (7-8, 9-10, 11-12 and 13-14) will advance to the 2010 Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run National Finals during MLB All-Star Week in Anaheim, CA. The addition of the Girls Softball Division will give young girls the opportunity to be awarded and advance separately through all four levels of competition, including the 2010 National Finals.
"Major League Baseball is thrilled that we will reach over 600,000 youth across the nation to aid in their development of strong skills and healthy lifestyles," said John Brody, Senior Vice President, Corporate Sales and Marketing, Major League Baseball. "While Pitch, Hit & Run has always invited young girls to participate, this expansion to a truly national girls program is a tremendous way to grow the game among young girls for years to come. We sincerely thank Aquafina for their support of the program's mission to give our youth opportunities to build lasting skills that they can use both on and off the field."
"We are proud to support young athletes while also encouraging them to remain active and develop their skills through the Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run initiative," said Jeff Dubiel, Vice President of Sports Marketing, Pepsi-Cola North America Beverages. "It is our hope that the addition of the Girls Softball Division will attract more young girls to participate and pursue their dreams on the field." This is the 14th year MLB has run a youth skills program. Information regarding dates, times and locations of local competitions as well as entry forms and other materials for the 2010 Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run initiative are available online at www.MLB.com/PHR.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.