“It’s more than baseball … It’s life!”
That’s the motto of Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI), a program founded in 1989 by former Major Leaguer John Young. Young set out to overcome the obstacles—like crime and a lack of funding for fields and equipment—that prevented many inner city kids from playing baseball.
The result was a program that taught the fundamentals of baseball and softball, as well as the importance of academic success and social responsibility—both requirements for participation.
RBI in Kansas City
Thanks to our presenting sponsor, Royals Charities, the RBI program at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City gives boys and girls, ages 5-18, the opportunity to play baseball and softball, all the while learning the importance of teamwork, leadership and life skills.
With the help of our partners—the Kansas City Royals, KCMO Parks & Recreation Department and the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum—the Boys & Girls Clubs began operating the RBI program in Kansas City in 1996. Since then, the program has continued to grow. Click here to join or to learn more about the RBI program in Kansas City.
Here’s a look at RBI’s evolution:
- Since 1996, RBI has grown from 150 youth, to over 900 participating youth per year.
- Every year, RBI sends teams to the regional playoffs, where they have the opportunity to qualify for the RBI World Series.
- In the spring of 2007, our RBI program was selected by The Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation as one of five sites to be part of a pilot program to identify and strengthen quality RBI programs across the country.
- Since 2009,
- 130+ high school graduates who played baseball with the Clubs have gone to college
- 54 RBI players have received baseball scholarships
- two RBI players were drafted by Major League Baseball