Away from the field, three New York Mets are giving back with their charitable efforts.
As the end of the 2019 New York Mets season drifts farther and farther away, the beginning of the 2020 season is not quite upon us. In between those two seasons comes another notable part of the year, the holiday season.
Though giving back to others is important all year round, the holidays in particular always seem to remind people that everyone should do their part to help the less fortunate.
Luckily, the Mets have had many players over the past few years who possess this “giving” attitude as well as a “winning” one. With the holidays almost upon us, it’s a good time to highlight a few current Mets players who do a lot of charity work, both during and after the baseball season. They frequently give back to fans with their towering home runs and shutdown innings. These players also give back, through their charitable initiatives, with the kindness of their hearts.
Unless you live under a rock, every Mets fan knows that Steven Matz is from Long Island, New York. Matz himself is very in touch with his New York roots, and his charity work reflects this. Since 2016, he has honored 9/11 first responders such as firefighters, policemen, and members of the military through his “Tru32” initiative. This organization is an extension of Pastime for Patriots, a MLB military-related charity initiative begun by former MLB reliever Brad Ziegler.
At several home games every season, Matz hosts and honors 32 first responders, thanking them for their service and acknowledging the importance of their work. These events usually involve invitations to batting practice, a meet and greet with Matz, and several autographed baseball items. In recent years, Matz has extended the program to fund scholarships for children whose parents lost their lives in the line of duty.
When asked about this initiative in 2017, Matz said, “They sacrifice their lives in their line of work, so just to show appreciation to them is what it’s all about.”
Matz has also expanded this initiative into several other lanes (pardon the pun) such as his “Strikes With Steven” charity bowling event. This event, begun last year, raises money for Tru32 via tickets that include dinner, drinks, bowling, and celebrity guests.
As Matz has become a staple in the Mets’ starting rotation over the past few years, his continued devotion to giving back to first responders has cemented him as one of the most visible faces of charity work in New York.