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Cal Ripken and His New Cooperstown Connection

Above: In this picture, Cal Ripken Jr. laughs and smiles while promoting his Ripken Youth Baseball program. Ripken is intent on developing young baseball talent all across the U.S.  The program also helps to work with at-risk youth programs in difficult areas. Photo Credit – Dan Gelston, AP Sports.

Cal Ripken is expanding his youth baseball program with a new agreement aligning him with Josh Harris and David Blitzer.

On Wednesday, Cal Ripken has come to new terms for his youth baseball apparatus. According to Dan Gelston of AP Sports, Ripken’s youth tournaments are in agreement with the owners of two other sports franchises.

Details on the Agreement

The Ripken Experience for tournaments is partnering with Josh Harris, owner of the Philadelphia 76ers of the NBA, and David Blitzer, who owns the New Jersey Devils in the NHL.

Blitzer, who is also a minority owner of the Cleveland Guardians, mentioned that he will send a northeast Ohio-area team to visit Cooperstown’s All-Star Village this season.  Blitzer will also potentially become the majority owner of the Guardians in a few years.

But What Will He Do?

Ripken is ready to explore new segments of the U.S. to develop talent.  Unsurprisingly, Ripken Baseball is especially active in Maryland. According to the Lexington (Kentucky) Herald-Leader, the Hall of Famer is ready to make excitement happen across the U.S.

Not only that, but the program is working to help mentor youth programs that may not be in well-off areas. “On the foundation side, we don’t look to make baseball players,” Ripken said in a phone interview Wednesday. “We look to have changes in their lives, and we think sports benefits everyone. We’re trying to use sports as that alternative to match people that care with kids that need guidance and some mentors.”

The end goal is to provide a Major League experience for the development of the youth players. And Ripken bases his love of the game on his career with the Baltimore Orioles. “I think it would be fun. I think I could help in the right way.” But we will see how the agreement and the youth trend continue to develop.

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