Chicago Youth Baseball Leagues Benefit from FBI Fraud Case

What we’ve got here is about 125 bats that
we took during the John Rogers case. John was a noted forger; he forged everything
from vintage autographs—Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb—all the way up through the ‘60s stars—Mickey
Mantle, Hank Aaron—all the way up to the current stuff he was doing, Albert Pujols
as well. Tonight we came out here, a group of FBI Chicago
employees, to give back to the community. And our folks came up with an organic idea,
and that organic idea was: If we took one of these bats and we put in the hands of one
of the kids in Chicago, could that bat make a difference for that kid? At the start of this case, I had advised my
prosecutor that if we ever come upon large amounts of seized material that we can make
good on—such as these bats by removing the signatures—I said that maybe at the end
of the case we get a restitution of forfeiture order so that we can donate the bats to some
good cause. Back in the summer of 2006, we were looking
for ways to give our inner-city urban kids, minority kids, more exposure in the game of
baseball, and so we developed the program along with the Chicago White Sox, White Sox
Charities, that we would have elite travel baseball funded by the Chicago White Sox for
urban inner-city minority kids. One of the things we get to do is we get to
bring a group of kids together from all over the city, and they get to gel together, get
to know each other, get to know a little bit about each other, especially with the gang
problems we’re having in the Chicagoland area. People that are working on this program every
single day, they’re the heroes. And they’re the heroes because they’re
making sure they’re giving these kids an opportunity. The kids in these neighborhoods are incredible
kids. If they’re given an opportunity and they’re
given good guidance, they will succeed. We’re very thankful for the donation that
they gave us and thankful for all the agents who came out today to spend time with our
kids, play catch with them, and talk with our kids, so we’re very thankful for that. Any time we can get someone to come out and
be positive around our kids and talk about their careers, we’re very thankful for that. This, you know, this generous donation of
these bats is really just going to help keep the ACE legacy, you know, keep it going, you
know. Keeping us on the field, you know, and really
just keeping an ongoing legacy of having us become good men, and good baseball players,
you know, getting us to college, really.

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