Nobody is taking themselves out to the old ballgame right now, so, at least locally, the old ballgame is doing its part to spread some good cheer.
The Utica-based United Shore Professional Baseball League announced it is putting together care packages for thousands of health-care workers in Metro Detroit, including Henry Ford Macomb Hospital in Clinton Township, McClaren Macomb Hospital in Mount Clemens, Ascension Providence Rochester Hospital in Rochester, Beaumont Hospital in Troy and DMC Sinai Grace Hospital in Detroit.
The bags will be distributed to doctors, nurses and other workers.
The bags are courtesy of several local businesses, including one local Jimmy John's franchisee, Jason Turner, who is supplying 6,000 gift cards for the bags, and then another 1,000 cards for free sandwiches.
“We are thankful to be able to show our appreciation to our local health-care workers who are going through so much to support all of us at this time,” Turner said.
In the gift bags will be a Jimmy John's card for a free sandwich; water courtesy of Pepsi and CGC Water; chips from Frito-Lay; playing cards from Coppola Wines; gift cards from Dunkin' Donuts, Chicken Shack, Smithfield Foods, Zap Zone, Dave & Busters, Sudz on Mound, Tide Dry Cleaning and Lucido Jewelry; an oil change from Kozak's Mr. Muffler; and four free tickets to a future USPBL game at Jimmy John's Field, when the season eventually starts up.
“The USPBL and Jimmy John’s Field have been supported tremendously by our local hospital systems and this is just a small way that we can show our support in return," said Andy Appleby, CEO of the USPBL.
The USPBL previously pledged free tickets to first responders, once the season begins.
The four-team USPBL, which is entering its fifth season, was scheduled to start May 8, but pushed back the target date to May 29. That date remains fluid, as the league continues to "monitor developments and guidelines set forth by the state and federal government," it said Wednesday.