Rockies take part in Home Plate Project

August 31st, 2019

DENVER -- Rockies first baseman Daniel Murphy and relief pitcher Bryan Shaw made contributions, and pitchers Kyle Freeland, Antonio Senzatela and Yency Almonte joined them for a day at Wyatt Academy -- a Denver Public Schools charter school -- as part of the Home Plate Project, which helps to fight childhood hunger and food insecurity.

All 30 clubs are participating in the Home Plate Project, an initiative in partnership with singer Garth Brooks’ Teammates for Kids Foundation (TFK) and Big League Impact, which was founded by Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright and is supported by Twins pitcher Kyle Gibson.

Ninety-four percent of the families of students at Wyatt Academy live below the poverty line and are eligible for free or reduced lunch. To combat the situation, the school launched the Family Empowerment Center, which according to the school is “a safe, welcoming place for families to find resources they need to set themselves, and their scholars, up for success. It features a clothing boutique, grocery, and laundromat -- all at no cost to families.”

The visit from the Rockies and their players occurred Thursday.

“We served lunch to the kindergarteners, first-graders, second-graders and third-graders, then visited a fifth-grade classroom with the players and did a Q&A with them,” said Jim Kellogg, the Rockies’ vice president of community & retail operations. “And Wyatt, after testing last year, ranked highest of all DPS schools for improvement. So what they’re doing there is incredible.

“We were there for about an hour and a half, visiting with the kids, taking a tour of their school and serving them lunch. Guys were behind the counter and sitting at the tables. It was really heartwarming, and we’re going to continue to do stuff with the Wyatt [Academy].”

The Home Plate Project includes a $900,000 initiative, including $300,000 from players toward distributing food and non-perishables to children in need.

From the MLB press release on the project, dated Aug. 1:

Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2019, Teammates For Kids ( began with the support of 67 Major League Baseball players who made a pledge to help kids. Since then, more than 4,700 professional athletes from baseball, football, basketball, hockey, soccer, rodeo and racing have joined the TFK team. Since its inception in 1999, the Teammates For Kids Foundation and its network of thousands of professional athletes has distributed funds to charities focusing on children’s health, education, and inner-city outreach, through building Child Life Zones, supporting youth athletic programs, and funding life-saving surgeries.

Big League Impact, Inc. ( is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to help meet basic human needs like food, clean water, medical care and shelter, in an effort to restore dignity and hope to people in the US communities and around the globe. Started by St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright in 2013 as a fantasy football fundraiser, Big League Impact has grown from coast to coast, now working with 80 MLB players, and having raised more than $4.5 million for athletes' causes.