Garth Brooks steps up to the plate


Sunday, February 1st 2004, 12:00 am
By: News On 6


KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Country singer Garth Brooks has been invited as a non-roster player to the Kansas City Royals' spring training camp that opens Feb. 20 in Surprise, Ariz.

Brooks' visit is designed to promote his charity, Teammates for Kids. He has an .027 average in 39 at-bats over three previous spring training camps.

The two-time Grammy winner, who grew up in Yukon, Okla., pinch ran for San Diego in a 1998 spring training game and hit .045 (1-for-22) for the Padres in 15 games the following spring. In 2000, he went 0-for-17 with four walks for the New York Mets.

His lone hit was a single up the middle off Mike Sirotka of the Chicago White Sox on March 21, 1999.

Brooks' invitation was announced Friday by the Royals.

With the help of 67 baseball players, Brooks started Teammates for Kids in 1999 to raise money for children's charities around the world. Today, there are more than 450 professional baseball, hockey and football players participating in Touchem All (the baseball division), Top Shelf (the hockey division) and Touchdown Teammates (the football division).

In the last five years, the athletes' contributions have helped generate over $37 million for children in the United States, Canada and 41 other countries.

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On the Net:

http://www.teammates4kids.com.