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Press Release

04/20/2011 4:40 PM ET
Major Leaguers honor local Action Team captains
Damon, Price and Shoppach recognize student leaders in national pogram to encourage youth volunteerism

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- During an on-field ceremony prior to tonight’s game, Tampa Bay Rays players Johnny Damon, David Price and Kelly Shoppach will represent all Major Leaguers when they honor nine high school students serving as captains of the Plant City (Fla.) High School Action Team®, part of the national service-learning program in which Major League players and high school students are inspiring and training the next generation of volunteers. During the 2010-11 school year, these Action Team captains raised awareness about the importance of community involvement among other students in their high schools and organized volunteer activities.

Administered by the Major League Baseball Players Trust and Volunteers of America, the Action Team program encourages young people throughout the United States to volunteer in their communities. To date, Action Teams of high school students and Major Leaguers have inspired more than 26,000 high school students across the country to help more than 111,000 people in need by volunteering in their communities. An award-winning Action Team service-learning curriculum created by the Players Trust in partnership with The Wall Street Journal Classroom Edition teaches valuable community-service skills to 1 million high school students in more than 5,000 classrooms across the country. The Association of Educational Publishers presented this innovative service-learning program with a 2009 Distinguished Achievement Award.

Receiving signed certificates of achievement from the players tonight are Action Team captains Amy Booher, David Coovert, Molly Coovert, Jacob Goad, Ivan Gutierrez, Jeremy Minaya, Dane Rice, Amelia Ruff and Allie Scmidt.

Action Teams are at work in 162 high schools across the country and Puerto Rico. Each month during the school year, Action Team captains participate in a conference call hosted by legendary broadcaster George Grande, where a Major Leaguer and a featured Action Team of the Month discuss the importance of community service and share volunteering tips and ideas. High schools interested in joining the Action Team can receive applications and additional information by visiting www.ActionTeam.org or by sending an email request to ActionTeam@mlbpa.org.

Through the Players Trust, Major Leaguers contribute their time, money and celebrity to call attention to important causes affecting the needy and to help encourage others to get involved in their own communities. For more information on the Major League Baseball Players Trust, please visit www.MLBPLAYERS.com and visit the Players Trust Channel on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/mlbplayerstrust.