The Los Angeles Dodgers, Dodgers Foundation, and iHeartMedia Los Angeles announced early on Tuesday that they will be providing critical donations to support local COVID-19 relief efforts that will aim to uplift significantly impacted Angelenos, including the most vulnerable populations and those on the front lines of the crisis.
The press release stated that relief efforts will address those experiencing homelessness, food insecurity, difficulty with basic needs, in addition to providing support for health care workers.
The campaign kicked off on Tuesday afternoon, when the Dodgers, Dodgers Foundation and team partner California Pizza Kitchen delivered 100 pizzas and Dodger goodies to UCLA Health staff at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.
CPK will also deliver 100 pizzas to UCLA Health staff at UCLA Medical Center Santa Monica on Wednesday. The team will announce future relief efforts with Dodger team partners throughout the month of April.
Relief efforts will bring together in-kind and monetary donations from the Dodgers, Dodgers Foundation, team partners, players, and fans, and direct the support to the organizations that need it most, providing more than 100,000 meals and $100,000 of in-kind donations. Dodgers Radio AM 570 LA Sports along with all iHeartMedia Los Angeles radio stations will utilize their platforms to raise awareness for the campaign with promotion throughout the month including on-air updates, interviews and digital support.
Fans can text “Relief” to 41623 or visit Dodgers.com/Relief to donate. A special online auction will also launch on April 8th and will feature autographed Dodgers memorabilia, jerseys from the 2020 roster, and game-used Max Muncy and Enrique Hernandez jerseys from games in which the players homered.
Initial grants will be directed to the Los Angeles Food Bank, My Friend’s Place and the Mayor’s Fund of Los Angeles. Additional funds raised will be directed to similar organizations with substantial need.
Initial donations include food, hygiene necessities, clothing and promotional items distributed to the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Grab & Go Food Centers, the Dream Center and homeless shelters in partnership with City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks. Additional donations will be provided to healthcare workers at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, UCLA Santa Monica Medical Center, and affiliated UCLA Health medical facilities.
Other sponsors joining these efforts include: ARCO, California Pizza Kitchen, Dasani, Dunkin’ Brands of Southern California, Farmer John, Gatorade, Jack in the Box, Levy Restaurants, Mastercard, Postmates, Smart & Final Charitable Foundation and Southern California McDonald’s.
In other news, the MLB and the MLBPA were busy early this week discussing the prospective start to the 2020 regular season, despite the pandemic still being near its peak in many parts of the country.
Even without any strong support of relief in sight, some of the discussions centered around players returning to camp sometime in May.
One idea surrounded the concept of all 30 teams playing the entirety of the season in the Greater Phoenix Area with no fans present.
“MLB has been actively considering numerous contingency plans that would allow play to commence once the public health situation has improved to the point that it is safe to do so,” the commissioner’s office said in a statement. “While we have discussed the idea of staging games at one location as one potential option, we have not settled on that option or developed a detailed plan.”
Full coverage on the Associated Press website was provided by Ronald Blum on Tuesday.
(Jon Chapper furnished some information provided in this report)