Curts Pitch 4 ALS GOES GLOBAL!
I had the privelage of meeting ALS patients and their families at the Tokyo Dome this morning prior to the exhibition game. There are 8,000 known ALS patients living in Japan. I would guess that there are 75% of that number living here undiagnosed as well.
The chapter has been here since 1986 and works in relative obscurity, which is unfortunate. We’re going to see if we can’t change that in 2008.
Curts Pitch 4 ALS is a program started 17 years ago. Basically Shonda and I donate $100 dollars per strikeout, and $1000 per win to the local ALS Chapter(s). What started as a program to benefit the Philadelphia ALS chapter run by our extraordinary friend and tireless advocate Ellyn Phyllips has now grown to encompass the Arizona and Boston Chapters of ALS.
The 2008 season, forgive the pun, of Curts Pitch has been thrown a curve. My shoulder problems are going to prevent me from pitching for quite a bit of the first half of the season. We were trying to find a way to insure that the local chapters don’t suffer because of this, and continue to raise money and awareness at the same time.
What I decided is this. Shonda and I will make donations to each of the chapters based on statistics of one of the local pitchers, you can see who I picked on the right. I have not spoken to any of these guys so they are probably not aware of this just yet. If they get involved great, but I would imagine they are likely already committted to charities of their own. No matter! We will donate to their chapters, and in 2008 we are adding the Japanese Chapter of ALS to the mix and will be donating to them based on Daisukes stats for the upcoming season!
In the very near future I will provide a link to a page that will allow fans of these players/teams to sign up for Curts Pitch to benefit the Chapter of their choice. I am hopeful that we can generate a massive amount of awareness for ALS in Japan as well, as I was told today none of the Japanese players is involved with ALS, and the ties are just too strong between the game and the disease to not try and make that happen.
In the meantime, anyone wishing to contribute or get involved with the Japanese ALS chapter please check out