Charitable Work in 2012

I’m very proud to proclaim, officially, that during the 2012 season I’ll be partnering with a charity to help bring a few more positive externalities from my ballhawking activities. Earlier this past winter, I reached out to a charitable orgainzation in regards to a partnership and was met with nothing but open arms and supportiveness. Before any of that, I asked Zack Hample’s permission as well, as he works with the same charity. I didn’t want to steal his thunder, and he was also very reassuring.

So, with great pleasure and excitement, I officially proclaim: During the 2012 regular and post seasons, I’ll be raising money with each baseball caught, found, glove tricked and otherwise for Pitch In for Baseball, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization!

So, how exactly would this charitable activity work?

That’s a great question! The answer is relatively simple, cheap and fulfilling. During the regular season, I average roughly 300 to 375 baseballs caught. Some of them are significant, and some of them are very mundane. My goal for this year is 450, which will be quite the task.

I’ll ask potential donors to pledge on a per-ball basis. Essentially, if someone were to pledge $0.01 per ball, at the end of a season, assuming I perform at an average level, the donor would be reminded of their total pledge, which in this case would be roughly $3.50. Pledges are not locked in, and merely a pledge. You don’t need to donate the full amount, or any at all for that matter, just what you feel comfortable with. Pledges can be made anonymously, or if you’d like, I can add you to the master list of pledges that I’ll be updating throughout the season.

-If someone were to pledge $0.02, their expected donation would be roughly $7.00.
-If someone were to pledge $0.05, their expected donation would be roughly $17.50, et cetera.                                                                                                      

I don’t handle the money, and will actually refuse cash donations. It can get sketchy and people can make off-the-wall accusations that way, so I’m just going to avoid it altogether.

But what does Pitch In for Baseball do?

Direct from their website:

We ship new and gently used equipment to children all over the world, as well as here in the U.S. Anyone is eligible, so long as your community has a genuine need for youth baseball and softball equipment and the kids want to have fun. We normally work with leagues and programs in the community that have the ability to distribute the equipment and have a demonstrated track record of working with kids.

Here are a few more little factoids to possibly help persuade you to pledge:

-I don’t see a penny of the money, ever.

-All donations are tax-deductible (but, as usual, you should consult a tax professional before claiming the deductions).

-If someone pledges $1+ per ball and makes the full donation, I’ll personally buy you a ticket to a late 2012 game at Miller Park. I’ll feed you, buy you a few age-appropriate beverages, and you can keep any baseballs I snag that day, (!)excluding(!) a game home run. Essentially, I’ll give you ballhawking lessons! Also, I’d like to see some sort of receipt of donation before our adventure, just to make sure everything is kosher!

-PIFB indeed helps children overseas in some of the most needy places on earth, BUT, they also help Little Leagues in your own back yard. They provide aide to anyone with a reasonable need, and you can earmark your donation for a specific project.

-Do you want to pledge a high about per ball, but are worried that I’ll go crazy, and snag 700 baseballs? First off, I won’t, but that’s not the point. Pledge your amount, and denote a pledge ceiling. “I’ll pledge a quarter per ball, up to $20.00,” for example.

-You can go outside the box, and be REALLY cool, and donate a piece of equipment per X balls. (One tee for tee ball per 200 balls, or say, one of your old, gently used gloves in the garage per 50 balls, or challenge me… Fund one complete team per 500 baseballs, etc).

Personally, I don’t see a reason someone COULDN’T pledge!

Contact me via email at, a comment here, or on Twitter to pledge!

Let’s do some GREAT things this season, while having an even better time!


And, here’s the master list of pledges in chronological order (which will be updated as donors join):

  1. Myself! I’m going to pledge $0.01 per ball, and $5 per game home run.
  2. Brooke P, $0.01
  3. Susan, $0.01
  4. Wayne Peck, from Collection of Baseball $0.01
  5. Rose P, $0.10
  6. Roman, @ThanksBilly, $0.25
  7. Jay Y, @JayMoneyYohnk, $0.10
  8. Mateo Fischer, from Observing Baseball $0.01
  9. James Toler, @JT_the_Kid $0.50 (!!!) and $1 per game home run
  10. Pete G., @superfanpete, $0.01 and $3 per game home run
  11. Scott M., @suprfanscott, $0.02
  12. Timmy T, @Timmyt3477, $0.10
  13. Zack Hample,, $0.02
  14. Casey Ward, $0.02
  15. Teri, @Teri_KMJ, $0.50 (!!!)


  1. Wayne

    And that my friends, is how its done! Great write up, Shawn! And I’m glad you’re doing charity work! Not only does it give something back, but it eases the bad reputation that Ballhawks carry on their shoulders of “stealing” all the baseballs from everyone. Like, Zack and myself, and others, I’m sure you don’t carry away a bag full of baseballs. We all give away most baseballs caught, but like Shawn has stated, we like to keep the home run baseballs we catch!

    • ballhawkshawn

      Wayne, support is awesome, but, the support *of a peer* is awesome in its own right. I truly do appreciate, more than people can imagine, the support I get from you guys. (And I love giving that support right back!)

  2. Pingback: Ballhawk Charities 2012 « Observing Baseball

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