The D-backs Inter-Tribal Youth Baseball & Softball Tournament is the largest all-Native American baseball and softball tournament in the country. Games are played throughout the Salt River reservation at ballparks around the Valley. Since the tournament’s inception in 1999, it has boasted over 14,000 participants who have played in over 1,700 friendship games. Each year, approximately 75 teams travel to Phoenix from tribal nations all over the country to participate. More than 1,125 participants representing more than 23 tribes participate in the 2019 tournament. Trophies are awarded to the championship teams and MVPs before the game on Native American Recognition Day.
Saturday, June 1, 2019 marked the D-backs 21st Native American Recognition Day in partnership with Gila River Hotels and Casinos and annual Inter-tribal Youth Baseball & Softball Tournament.
This festive day at the ballpark includes performances from various Native American drum groups, dancers and vocalists as well as art displays and educational exhibits. The team also recognizes several of Arizona’s Tribal Royalty Contingent and the ceremonial first pitch, national anthem and color guard display are all performed by members of the Native American community.
- The Arizona Diamondbacks partnered with the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community to provide renovations of Lehi Field located on the reservation.
- The Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, Gila River Indian Community baseball and softball programs and the White Mountain Apache Little League have participated in the D-backs Give Back Youth Jersey Program. Since 2015, the tribal leagues have received approximately $53,000 in free jerseys and caps.
- Gila River Indian Community baseball program receives $20,000 per year for equipment
- The Salt River Community Children’s Foundation received a $10,000 donation in 2015.
- The Miracle House Foundation has received over $45,000 in support since 2009.
- The Phoenix Indian Center has received over $20,000 in donations since 2014.
- The Native American Community Health Center received a $10,000 grant in 2012.
- Native American Connections has received over $200,000 in grants since 2013.
- Native American tribes received $225,000 in relief funding during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis.
- Navajo United Way received $10,795 for the Assayi Fire Relief Fund in 2014.
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Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation launched the D-backs Give Back Youth Jersey Program, providing youth baseball and softball leagues across Arizona with high-quality jerseys and caps at no cost. The D-backs Give Back Youth Jersey Program has significantly offset diminishing resources and has allowed participating leagues to reallocate funds toward equipment, registration fees and facility improvements. In 2020, two new jerseys were added with our tribal word mark to the mix of uniforms worn by many Little Leaguers.