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MLB "PLAY BALL" Initiative partners with Hank Aaron Sports - Fantastic 44



PRESS RELEASE 05.20.2022 (For immediate release)

MLB “Play Ball” initiative partners with Fantastic 44

The inaugural season of Mississippi’s Fantastic 44 just got a whole lot better with the announcement that there will now be a strategic partnership between the initiative of gathering the top 44 minority High School baseball players from throughout the state of Mississippi and MLB’s Play Ball initiative.

“This initiative is as simple as it sounds, and that is to encourage everyone to play ball regardless of your gender, race or social status. The game of baseball is a year-round sport in most parts of the south, because of our weather. This offers the opportunity for our youth from all backgrounds to get involved and participate and we are thankful to MLB and the Braves organization for partnering with us and our future leaders, the Fantastic 44”. Said Tim Bennett who is Co-Owner of the Milwaukee Brewers (AA)-Biloxi Shuckers and CEO of the Hank Aaron Sports Academy

The Fantastic 44 are chosen from among the 245 High Schools and even some talented Jr. High School players to participate in June and July beginning with 2 weekend practices at the Hank Aaron Sports Academy in June and then advancing to match play in single game series at Trustmark Park (Atlanta Braves-AA), MGM Park (Milwaukee Brewers-AA) and concluding at Rickwood Field in Birmingham, Alabama. These games will be played as “showcase” or “exposure series” in order to garner attention to these young men from local and regional coaches and scouts so as to enhance their future opportunities in the game of baseball.

"The Mississippi Braves are proud to partner with the Hank Aaron Sports Academy and Major League Baseball on the Play Ball Weekend initiative. We look forward to combining our efforts towards the same goal of growing the game of baseball in our inner cities."

- Pete Laven, - Mississippi Braves, General Manager

The kickoff ceremonies / meet & greet for the Fantastic 44 will take place at 10:00 a.m. on June 11th at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in Jackson, Mississippi, followed by skills, drills, and inner squad at the Hank Aaron Sports Academy located on 1200 Cool Papa Bell Drive. For more information contact or

Players can register at

Carrying the legacy of the most prolific baseball player in our generation to all deserving youth.

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