CC SABATHIA AND THE MLBPA TEAM UP TO CELEBRATE THE NEGRO LEAGUES’ 100th, PAYING TRIBUTE TO LEGENDARY AFRICAN AMERICAN BASEBALL PLAYERS
Negro Leagues Baseball Museum To Benefit From Partnership
NEW YORK (July 9, 2020) – In commemoration of the Negro Leagues’ 100th anniversary, the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) has launched a unique collaboration with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum (NLBM) and iconic lifestyle brand, Roots of Fight, to pay tribute to the African-American legends who paved the way for diversity in the sport.
Additionally, World Series champion, Cy Young Award winner and one of the famed ‘Black Aces’, CC Sabathia will be the Creative Director of the clothing collection, which is dedicated to highlighting the impact yesterday’s legends have had on today’s greats.
“Preserving the legacy of the Negro Leagues’ contributions to baseball is vital to growing our game’s diversity and popularity,” MLBPA Executive Director Tony Clark said. “This partnership will help bring to life the spirit of these great players for a new generation of players and fans.”
A portion of proceeds from all sales will benefit the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum’s efforts to preserve and celebrate the rich history of African American baseball and its significance in the social advancement of America at large. As well, Roots of Fight will be donating a portion of sales from this program and their entire site to the NAACP, Black Lives Matter and other initiatives to help fight racial inequality and injustice. ROF has committed a minimum of $50,000 for 2020 to these causes. Furthermore, when legendary former players are featured in the collection, a portion of proceeds will also go directly to them or their estates.
“The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum is proud to partner with CC Sabathia, Major League Baseball Players Association and Roots of Fight on this thought-provoking and stylish collection that beautifully captures the winning spirit of those courageous baseball pioneers who overcame tremendous social adversity to play ball,” NLBM President Bob Kendrick said.
Sabathia designed the program and apparel to include the phrase “They Played for Us” to represent the lasting influence Negro League Players have had on today’s game and popular culture. The phrase is meant to amplify the magnitude of the impact black players of yesteryear have had on today’s players. They played for us, so we can... This will give individuals a chance to finish the sentence with a personalized message of gratitude.
“Having the chance to be around many legendry black players early in my career, I quickly learned of the magnitude the Negro Leagues had in Major League Baseball and for me specifically as a black baseball player,” said World Series Champion and Creative Director, CC Sabathia. “Through this collection, we celebrate those black players that came before and remind ourselves that they played for us, so we can.”
Featuring a full range of T’s, hoodies, two-tone baseball long sleeves, shorts and expanding to fleece and jackets in the Fall/Winter, the collection was thoughtfully designed and curated to preserve the Negro League’s rich history and celebrate the pioneers who authored it. The first capsule of the collection will pay tribute to the NL’s Centennial, as well as the life and legacy of baseball’s beloved Jackie Robinson, who famously broke the color barrier in 1947. Prices range from $40 - $350 USD and will debut exclusively on RootsOfFight.com.