Major League Baseball’s annual draft will be on the move from New Jersey and heading to Omaha, the site of the College World series, and the Holland Performing Arts Center.
Major League Baseball will move the date of the first round of the 2020 Draft to June 10 so that the event does not overlap with College World Series games. MLB will invite all participating CWS teams to participate in the festivities, as well as local high school and youth-league baseball and softball players.
“Major League Baseball is excited to bring the Draft to the site of the College World Series, where the top collegiate players will be competing later that week for a national championship,” MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said. “Placing the draft in the competitive atmosphere of Omaha will bring greater exposure to the event and give future professional players a more rewarding draft day experience.”
Rounds 2-10 of the draft will be held June 11, with the remaining 30 rounds on June 12. On June 13, 2019, MLB staged its first regular season game ever in the state of Nebraska as the Kansas City Royals met the Detroit Tigers at Omaha’s TD Ameritrade Park, two days prior to the start of the CWS at the same ballpark.
MLB teams with Scotts Company
Major League Baseball will work again with The Scotts Company for the 2020 Scotts Field Refurbishment Grant Program, which improves fields in communities of need.
The special ambassadors for the program will be Olympic softball Gold Medalist Jennie Finch and former Philadelphia Phillies star Ryan Howard. Applications can be submitted through January 31, 2020 at MLB.com/scottsfield. Winners will be announced in early spring and project work will start to take place throughout the spring of 2020.
“I was lucky to play on some of the best fields in the world during my time with USA Softball, but traveling around the country as a parent and instructor, I’ve seen first-hand the need to improve field conditions for future generations of players,” said Finch. “I’m so happy that I can help Scotts and MLB continue this effort.”
MLB and Scotts started the program in 2016 to provide kids with modern, playable fields in communities around the U.S. In four seasons, the program has renovated over 20 youth fields across the country with $1.5 million of support.
“As a baseball player, one of the best feelings every day was arriving at the park, seeing the fresh-cut grass and running out there with your teammates,” said Howard, a 2008 World Series champion. “I’m looking forward to hearing from all the communities that need our help and deeply encourage anyone who thinks their field can use our support to apply for these unique grants.”
The program will provide grants of products and services, including infield sod, that each have a collective value of up to $50,000 to four organizations with fields in need of renovation. To be considered, applying organizations must provide programming to youth in underserved areas across the U.S.