Orioles giving back during coronavirus pandemic

May 15th, 2020

Since Major League Baseball was put on pause due to the coronavirus pandemic, many across the sport have done their best to help those most affected by COVID-19. In this regard, the Orioles are no different.

The Orioles have spearheaded several charitable initiatives over the past few months, and many connected to the club have branched out with an eye toward giving back on their own as well. Here is an overview of those efforts.

April 20: The O's and the Baltimore area Chick-fil-A partnered to distribute 645 meals to employees at Baltimore’s MedStar Harbor Hospital. The meals -- split between the daytime staffers and night shift workers -- were donated in part by manager Brandon Hyde and executive vice president and general manager Mike Elias.

May 1: Asher Wojciechowski, Shawn Armstrong, Cedric Mullins and Austin Wynns helped donate lunches to the staff at Hopkins Medical.

May 2: Elias and staff spent their morning distributing meals provided by World Central Kitchen to Baltimore families in need.

May 7: The Orioles partnered with Dunkin' Donuts to deliver donuts and coffee to Maryland Food Bank volunteers. That same day, the O’s partnered with OneBlood to hold a blood drive at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Fla., with an eye toward helping those affected by COVID-19.

1B Chris Davis
On March 26, Chris and his wife Jill donated breakfast to the staff at the University of Maryland Children’s Hospital to honor what would’ve been Opening Day. The Davises are regular benefactors to the hospital, having made a $3 million donation late last year.

1B/OF Trey Mancini
Though he’s undergoing treatment for Stage 3 colon cancer while in quarantine, Mancini is also finding time to help others. On May 13, Mancini had sandwiches delivered to John Hopkins Medicine to show his appreciation for those working on the frontlines of the pandemic.

LHP Richard Bleier
On April 1, Bleier gifted an Italian lunch to the entire emergency room staff at Wellington Regional Medical Center in Florida’s Palm Beach County. The donation came on the day Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a stay-at-home order for the state.

“Much respect to the nurses, doctors, medical staff, and everyone else working extremely hard in all the hospitals around the country to help people,” Bleier wrote on Instagram. “I hope everyone who is in a position to help someone else does so in this time of need. We will all get through this together [six feet away from each other of course].”

RHP Evan Phillips
While he remains in Florida rehabbing a right elbow injury, Phillips has taken up a new project with his fiancé Elizabeth Devita. Together the couple is pitching in by making masks that are designed and sewn by hand. Phillips has recruited fellow O’s pitchers Paul Fry and Cody Carroll to model the masks, some of which are baseball themed.

“I think the expectation was to help out family and friends, or maybe local businesses in need,” Phillips told CBS Baltimore. “Then it just kind of grew into [Elizabeth’s] own Etsy shop and people were just placing orders in bundles.”

RHP Miguel Castro
Back home in the Dominican Republic city of Villa Hermosa, Castro and his family have been delivering food and other essentials to vulnerable members of the community. Castro travels with a government-issued security detail after he was robbed at gunpoint this winter.

O's No. 1 prospect Adley Rutschman
Back home in Oregon, Rutschman donated $10,000 to help fill food boxes for families in need in his local school district. Rutschman’s parents Carol and Randy are longtime teachers in the district.

Cal Ripken Jr.
For nearly two decades, the Iron Man has worked to promote sport participation and help kids across the country through his Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation. His focus recently shifted to helping those affected by COVID-19. In April, the foundation partnered with Feed America and others to donate $100,000 to address food insecurity during the crisis. The money was meant to benefit food banks on both the local and national levels.