Brita, Steel Sports Support Two Urban Baseball Teams for National Youth Baseball Championships

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Initiative has provided over 500 young athletes in urban communities the opportunity to play in the NYBC.

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“Team MLB Urban Youth Academy and South Dekalb Tribe are two organizations that provide their young athletes more than just baseball but a pathway for life."

Water filtration brand Brita® has expanded its partnership with Steel Sports by supporting California’s Team MLB Urban Youth Academy and Georgia’s South Dekalb Tribe with funding to attend the National Youth Baseball Championships (NYBC).

Since inception of Brita’s “Urban Youth Initiative” in 2016, it has helped pay expenses for four teams to attend the NYBC championships in New York and more than 40 teams for qualifying events. Brita’s goal is to give young athletes in urban communities the opportunity to play in the NYBC and encourage those kids to drink water as their primary hydration source instead of sports drinks.

“We are committed to providing young athletes the opportunities to play in competitions which otherwise may not have been a reality,” said Ed Huber, General Manager of Brita. “Team MLB Urban Youth Academy and South Dekalb Tribe are two organizations that provide their young athletes more than just baseball but a pathway for life. Brita congratulates both teams, and we’re excited for them to participate in the NYBC, an experience they will remember for the rest of their lives.”

“The health and welfare of youth in Steel Sports programs is imperative,” said David Shapiro, CEO of Steel Sports. “For the third consecutive year, hydration is a core safety message thanks largely to Brita’s support.”

Team MLB 14U from Compton, California won its regional qualifier on April 15. Formed in 2006, Compton was Major League Baseball’s first Urban Youth Academy; each aims to set the standard for baseball instruction and teach ways to enhance quality of life in communities.

“We are so proud of our 14U travel team for advancing to the championship of the NYBC,” said Del Matthews, Senior Director of Baseball & Softball Development, MLB. “This is a great testament to the hard work and dedication of both our players and coaches at our Youth Academy in Compton. The opportunity to travel to New York and compete against some of the best from around the country is going to be an unforgettable experience for the kids, and we thank both Brita and Steel Sports for giving them this chance.”

The South Dekalb Tribe 12U from metro Atlanta won the East Coast Qualifier on April 15. Its mission is fostering good character and building productive citizens and communities through athletics.

“We are so grateful for our kids to have the unique opportunity to travel to New York to play in the NYBC,” said South Dekalb Tribe Head Coach Charles Johnson. “Thanks to Brita and Steel Sports, our kids now have an amazing opportunity to be a part of an experience they will remember for a lifetime.”

The NYBC is on July 23-29 at Steel Sports-owned Baseball Heaven in Yaphank, N.Y. It crowns national champions in 10U-14U age divisions and is televised coast to coast on CBS Sports Network and streamed on MLB.com. Team MLB and South Dekalb Tribe begin play on July 24.

More information about the National Youth Baseball Championships and qualifiers: NYBCbaseball.com.

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Nathan Clinkenbeard
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