This year, more than 30 Major League ballplayers, coming from more than a dozen teams, have joined together in the fight against slavery. Each of these players and their families are using their platform to engage fans and communities in ways that make an impact off the field.
San Francisco Giants pitcher, Jeremy Affeldt, helped form Team Not For Sale as the first to make a personal pledge back in 2010. During this past off-season, Affeldt joined Not For Sale President and Co-Founder Dave Batstone on a visit to Kru Nam’s village in Thailand in order to see first hand the children that he is playing for. The visit was covered in more depth by MLB.com in January and can be read here. The experience not only reaffirmed his commitment to Not For Sale, but encouraged Affeldt to reach out to other ballplayers to join the ranks of Team Not For Sale.
“We’re trying to leave a legacy that when we leave this game, we are known for not only what we did on the field, but what we did off the field,” Affeldt said last season. His passion for justice spurred him to write his first book, To Stir A Movement, which is being released this spring and features his experience working with Not For Sale.
For 2013, he has pledged $250 for every strikeout he throws. Joining him in 2013 are 30 more ballplayers, also making a pledge. Each pledge is personalized to a stat/accomplishment of their choosing. In addition to their pledge, many are making their activism a family affair. Players’ wives are joining in to create various events, engagement, and fundraisers to end slavery and create a world where every child is free to play.
Everyone has a role to play in the modern abolitionist movement. These ballplayers have chosen to lead by example, a decision that makes us proud to hold up our athletes as role models. And considering the impact they are having on the lives of those once vulnerable and enslaved, their actions are nothing short of heroic.
Full roster for Team NFS 2013:
Jeremy Affeldt SF Giants / #41
Brandon Belt SF Giants / #9
Ian Kennedy AZ Diamondbacks / #31
Matt Holliday STL Cardinals / #7
Micah Owings WAS Nationals / #46
Nick Hundley SD Padres / #27
Cliff Pennington AZ Diamondbacks / #4
Josh Collmenter AZ Diamondbacks / #55
Charlie Culberson COL Rockies / #23
Adrian Gonzalez LA Dodgers / #23
Matt Cain SF Giants / #18
Cody Ross AZ Diamondbacks / #7
Vernon Wells NY Yankees / #10
Brad Boxberger SD Padres / #29
Justin Masterson CLE Indians / #63
Hunter Pence SF Giants / #8
Barry Zito SF Giants / #75
Dexter Fowler COL Rockies / #24
Chase Headley SD Padres / #7
Skip Schumaker LA Dodgers / #3
Brent Lillibridge CH Cubs / #20
Paul Goldschmidt AZ Diamondbacks / #44
Wade Miley AZ Diamondbacks / #36
Blake Hawksworth free agent
Josh Lindblom TX Rangers / #25
AJ Ellis LA Dodgers / #17
Shawn Tolleson LA Dodgers / #38
Stephen Drew BOS Red Sox / #7
Jaime Garcia STL Cardinals / #54
Brian Roberts BAL Orioles / #1
Travis Ishikawa BAL Orioles / #45
Jake Brigham TX Rangers / #49
Gavin Floyd CH White Sox / #34
Stefan Gartrell CH White Sox / #76
To learn more, go to: http://www.notforsalecampaign.org/team-nfs/